Sep 252015
 

Hello all of you, Lego fans !
Forklift_1024Time has come for a new MOC, a from scratch MOC that kept me occupied for quite a long time. I was searching for a new idea and I saw a few forklifts on Rebrickable… the idea was here, building something big, strong and with a few nice mechanisms. I started by inspecting what the other builders made so far, and I realized that I’ve set myself into a challenge that I probably could not win 🙂

Instead of copying, I took a white paper sheet and made the list of the functions I would like to see on a forklift :

  • Raising and lowering of the forks, with the ability to lift loads
  • Steering by the rear wheels
  • Leaning forward and backward of the lifting arm
  • Adjustable forks, in terms of spacing
  • Adjustable forks, in terms of height

The other things to add, as a Lego Technic model were for me :

  • Hiding as much as possible the Power Function items
  • Building something that looks like a forklift
  • A working steering wheel. I hate when they don’t work !
  • Respecting the scale

Then went the time of the constraints. Will I be able to lift 1 kg ? not sure, the thing remains a toy made of light plastic pieces. Should I build it so it can raise a 1kg load ? Well, I probably could, but this would certainly have a huge impact on the look. So, a light load will suffice, for example, 2 or 3 wheels on a palette. Will I be able to motorize everything ? Is it necessary ? what are the functions that don’t need a motor without altering the playability ? Well, the forks can be adjusted once and, and the model still playable. What about counterweight… If I put a load on the front, I need a weight on the rear, and what’s heavier than the battery box ? nothing. Another good point of putting the battery box at the rear is that I will make it easily accessible, which eases its replacement.

Modularity ? Hum yes… but why ? What is modular on a forklift if not the forks ? And what to do… A possibility is to replace the forks by a tub. If you search on the web, you’ll find a few forklifts equipped with that, it’s usually used in the constructions sites to lift the cement or building materials on the scaffoldings. I’ll think about that later.. or not (it ended with a not haha)

The construction

I started by the forks, it’s the more interesting thing on the forklift. I built them a bit wide, with small wheels to reduce the strain when the forks touch the palette or the ground, when loading… To keep them symmetrical when being adjusted, I added a mechanism at their center. I also added pulleys to make them adjustable and simplify their attachment with the strings. Impossible to use chain there, i could not find how to tie them on the forks…

Then, I’ve made a chassis, integrating the motors and the battery box, and the 2 large actuators in charge of the leaning. The biggest challenge was to make it rigid enough without using hundreds of useless pieces. Once done, assembling the bodywork was the last step.
To be honest, the first release was almost all black and really ugly. Instead of making try after try to find a workable combo, I’ve drawn it under Lego Digital Designer and then played with the color tool until I made something that suited my wishes.

Finally, I’ve built something. Is it good or not, I dont know, but it’s playable, tested by a 7 years old kid ! That’s not that bad afterall, and I’m satisfied enough !
Watch the Youtube video if you want to see the demo, or download the PDF instructions below if you want to build it yourself !

Have fun with Lego !

Clic here for PDF instructions :  Forklikft - RC - MOC (4253 downloads)

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