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Thread: Metal Blast Gate Positioner

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    No, not all of SoCal is Los Angeles!

    Metal Blast Gate Positioner

    This is one of those things where if you have the behavior, it might help. If you don't experience this issue, you'll wonder if I've bumped my head on something.

    My metal blast gates have a little stud knob to lock them in the open or closed position. My DC tends to suck the gate halfway closed if it is not held in the open position. I didn't like bothering with the turn-knob, especially if I were opening or closing the gate with a stick from a distance (as I normally do; custom built stick . . . even too silly to show here).

    Remove the knob and get yourself a small barrel shaped magnet and a screw that will fit but not extend into the gate path; that is . . . a short one.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Mill your 'precision magnet placement appliance' into the proper dimensions and form.

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    Screw it on where the knob used to be.

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    and now . . . the gate stays closed (it used to do that anyway but it makes this sound more exciting than it actually is).

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    And the gate stays open (it didn't used to do that without turning the locking knob).

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    So, now I'm all happy and you all are thinking of banning me from the forum.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Floydada, Tx
    Sweet I will have to do this. I always had a problem when makin mold havin the gates rattle shut and chips start spewing all over the floor. Or worse sandin a panel and havin the gate close and fillin the shop with a dust strom.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Thomasville, GA
    Great solution to the problem, Glenn. I use the same type of gate but haven't had the problem you described -- yet. All of my gates are horizontal or vertical and the slider moves straight inline. I'll keep your idea in mind if any of my gates start acting up.
    Bill Arnold
    Citizen of Texas residing in Georgia.
    NRA Life Member and Member of Mensa
    My Weather Underground station

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Delton, Michigan
    i had that happen on one as well glenn but i over came it but repostioning the gate so it wanted to stay open.. but in your case your mathode works well in any position
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Plainwell, Michigan
    what you still doing up ain't it past yer bedtime

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    With a single 20-foot flex hose that I move from machine to machine, I don't have any blast gate problems. Looks like your solution works for those who do, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by glenn bradley View Post
    ...and you all are thinking of banning me from the forum.
    But if we did that, who would we have to point at and snicker?
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  7. #7
    Nice idea for keeping the gate from sliding, Were I to approach the delima, I believe I would take out the screw and pop in as small rubber ball (like the space balls used in panel construction) and reinsert the screw (perhaps a bolt and lock nut) to apply some tension on the gate plate yet allow to be pushed in and out with a stick. What the gate needs is som tension on the gate plate to stop the movement (you provide that with a magnetic attraction which can be overcome with a stick The rubber ball will do the same

    Just another approach... Thanks for your posting and idea to consider.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Manistique, Michigan
    Great idea. Now if they only made plastic magnets so I could do this on my blast gates....

    I learned vibration analysis from an expert who started one of the premier vibration analysis companies back in the '50s. We use magnets to hold accelermeters to equipment while taking readings. To take readings on non iron materials, most of the time we use epoxy to hold the magnet, especially on concrete. He always told us if we came up with a concrete magnet that he would buy hundreds of them.

    This guy is amazing. He is a nuclear physicist that worked on the Manhatten project for Einstien. His job was to make sure air plane vibration was isolated from the bomb so it wouldn't go off while in flight.

    Sorry about the digrestion.
    Rich (the Yooper)

    "To the world, you may be one person, but to one person, you may be the world."

    "Common sense is not so common."

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Oklahoma City, OK

    Mod to make blast gates "automatic"

    I took this one step further. I used door lock actuators and two little linkage arms to build "triggers" to hold the gates open and to close them remotely. Now I don't have to run all over the shop looking for the gates I've forgotten to close. I use a 12V battery, a solar charger and pushbutton switches next to each of the two DC switches. Rubber bands make perfect springs to pull the gates closed (after trying $30.00 worth of different springs). Now when I turn off the DC, I push the putton and Voila!, all the gates are closed.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Backa.jpg   IMG_1017a.jpg   Overall Fronta.jpg  
    Cut to Print, grind to fit, paint to match

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Hi Gary

    First of all Welcome to the family. Hope you enjoy your stay. You find we love lots of pics here so you already dun good.

    Now I have no knowledge of a door lock actuator so i had to look it up. I only use one everytime i get into my car eh! Duh.

    So i studied your pictures for a long time and i am still none the wiser on how this actuator opens the gate. I can see the bands pulling it closed but the arm of the actuator appears to be screwed to the gate casting so how does it attach to pull the gate open?

    I presume the stoke of these actuators is too short to drive the gate directly?

    Any ballpark figure on what the actuators cost? I guess one could get them from a scrap car dealer.

    This is a great idea you have and by the looks of it could also be wired to a remote control.

    My dust collector is currently in the corner waiting for ducting and then i will be tackling this element of my shop fit out.

    Thanks for posting. Now you have started I bet there are a dozen more projects you have in your shop you could enlighten us to.

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