The Solenoid Engine Single is a second generation desktop standing engine with an acrylic framework, flywheel and solenoid piston. The Solenoid Engine single is completely electronically controlled. Piston timing comes from an slotted-opto sensor with a separate adjustable cam. The speed regulation comes from the small embedded CPU. This gives a wide range of running speeds which are adjustable with a pair of push buttons on the back of the motor to increase/decrease the speed.
The speed is regulated by ‘missing’ power strokes when the flywheel is moving over the pre-set speed. This is similar to the way a gas engine is regulated.
It is capable of running from 5-18V supply with an average current draw as low as 20mA, depending on the solenoid choice, speed and supply voltage. Piston timing and con-rod length are all adjustable and there is provision for adding 8 x M5 nuts and bolts around the flywheel for added weight . An LED indicates the solenoid output.
What you get
This is the complete kit, and comprises PCB, Acrylic frame and a Solenoid. It is available with the electronics PCB as a kit or built and tested. It makes a great desk toy, or as a teaching aid for any piston based engine class.
Run from a u:Bit or Raspberry PI
With a few simple changes, the engine can be made to be controlled from a Raspberry Pi or BBC u:Bit ( or pretty much any other computer) see the resources section for details.
This is the second version of the solenoid engine single with many changes to make the construction and operation easier. These include, Separate cam / slotted-opto which gives a better pulse to the electronics and easier modification of the timing. The axle is now rotating, rather than fixed. This enables access to the motors output for use with other equipment. There is now access slots to ease the setting solenoid position and the foil on the flywheel has been removed which improves the look of the engine.
Please note: This Kit Contains small parts and is therefore not suitable for children under 5 years old.