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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

PVC T for Pet Food Dispenser

Over the weekend, I bought a 2" PVC T and the hardware to assemble the pet food dispenser.  When I got home, I tried inserting the PVC into the wood supports that I cut on Friday.  The hole was just a bit too small.  My theory is that we should have made the cut for the hole right on the line instead of on the inside of the line.

Next, I tried putting the augur in the T.  It went in the first few inches just fine.  Then, it hit the raised part that is made to step the PVC that is inserted into the T.  Doh!  The augur was sized for a 2" diameter but the inside of the PVC is about 1 3/4" with the raised part.  Strike two.

First, I went to Home Depot and bought a different PVC T.  This one still had a raised part inside but it was about half as thick as the other T.  I was hoping it would be easier to make it work.

Then, Tim and I stopped off at the Makerspace to fix the two problems.  We put an abrasive disc Dremel part into a drill press and used that to make the holes on the wood bigger.  It took a few passes to get it right.  Now, the PVC T fits snugly into the wood supports.

Once that was done, we turned our attention to the augur.  At first, we tried getting rid of the raised part on the inside of the T.  We used a hand file and spent a good bit of time with that.  It did make some difference but not enough.  One problem is that the file was flat and the inside of the PVC is round so there was not enough surface area contact.

Finally, we used a band sander to remove a layer off of one of the auger halfs.  That was very ugly but it seemed to work.  I only brought one auger half so we could not finish the job.

After we left, I thought that we should have used a circular wire brush attachment for a drill.  I did not see one at the space.  Maybe I will go to Home Depot and buy one and then use it to smooth out the inside of the T.  I might also have to re-print the augur parts if they will then fit on the inside of the T.

I will chalk this up to a learning experience.