There seems to be a small community of DIY vehicle builders, but they tend to stick to forums and such. I think because of liability issues (and rules for cars are pretty strict as they are), there isn't a lot of sharing between builders beyond the basic frame

I don't know how reliable things like CANpie or Can4linux are (Controller Area Network or CAN used for internal systems communication in vehicles, and these are open source)

Speaking of vehicles, one design I'd like to see, even just for farms or for private property use only, is the "Rocker Bogie" design. It's the same system used by pretty much all NASA rovers since Sojourner

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Even though I've seen NASA use it since I was a kid, what really took my imagination in the direction of the Rocker Bogie, is Simon Stålenhag's excellent artwork

First, it was this one called "Missing Person"

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He's since used the same vehicle design several times in other artwork. Each one is eerily beautiful in a hauntingly post-apocalyptic way

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Looks like the interior of this style of vehicle is a cross between camper, research lab, and transport

Although the front is hard to see, it's well lit inside and seems spacious

Yeah, if I'm ever building a vehicle to carry me through an apocalyptic environment, it would definitely be a Simon Stålenhag inspired rocker bogie type

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There are a lot of research papers on the Rocker Bogie layout, but almost all of them follow some version of this

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It occurs to me that a typical washing machine has a powerful enough motor that can be adapted as an in-wheel motor

They're quite powerful, usually efficient, and flat enough that they fit in the wheel width

The coil stator doesn't bear any kind of static load from the vehicle so it can be mounted on the axle. The magnet hub can be attached to the wheel, but without bearing any load either. Also, these are designed to handle vibration by necessity, but a rocker bogie will experience less of it

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Even though washing machines (like most modern consumer appliances) are chock full of proprietary junk when it comes to control software, the motors still appear to be a straightforward 3-phase

This one is for a Samsung washing machine

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If the stator is movable within the axle, it's possible to use variable fields to improve efficiency at high speed

Although speed isn't the priority for a rocker bogie arrangement, this shows there's flexibility in a similar type of motor

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@jasper To reduce the influence of the magnetic field at higher speeds. Since the magnets are of a fixed strength, the stator is moved instead. I think Tesla electric motors avoid this by using only electromagnets

This is a good paper on variable field permanent magnet motors


I had a look at the control board when our machine died a few months ago, all it had was a ARM cotrex M3 microprocessor, a few mosfets and relays and a couple sensors

it feels almost insulting to pay so much for what is essentially a glorified arduino

@cypnk I wonder if it would be efficient to salvage such motor and make a wind (or water) turbine out of it.

@Xipiryon This is an even better video demonstrating how to wire such a motor and turn into a turbine power source :

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