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Ham Radio Mount

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I come to the thingiverse gods for help. I am trying to mount my Ham Radio in my car and the bracket I make keeps breaking at the mating points. The radio head mounts between the gear shift and the dash where the ashtray used to be (I took the ashtray out). At the present, I made the bracket in two parts. The bottom mounts with two screws to the lower section of the center console. The top section mounts to the ham radio with three smaller screws. Then the two brackets mount to each other with a GoPro style mount held together with a GoPro mounting bolt. This allows me to mount both brackets, one to the console, one to the radio, then place the radio into position, adjust the angle, (it has to be angled very slightly forward approximately 5 degrees, then install and tighten the GoPro mounting screw to secure it. This set-up has worked well and the mount has been fairly sturdy but the issue is that the mating surface and GoPro hinge part is subject to failure and will break over time. I redesigned the mount basically increasing the width of the GoPro hinge fingers slightly but they are still not very reliable. What I need is a different style mount. The issue is that I don’t know the exact angle needed for the radio and even if I did, how am I going to mount the mount and still be able to get to the underside of the radio to mount it if I design it as one piece?

Does anyone have any ideas for a mounting solution, new bracket idea I could use? I designed the current mount in Fusion 360 and can probably design just about anything I need to, I just need to come up with an idea for something that will work. I’ll try to attach a picture of the mount in Fusion 360 and a picture of the console and radio if I can.

Thanks in advance for any ideas you can come up with.

What has already been mentioned, you print with side of the bracket down add a raft with supports. It will be fine. One last thing print it with PETG. print at 220, retraction 6.5, you will eliminate most of your stringing. PLA will never stand up to summer heat in vehicle. These are only suggestions. 73s

GoPro hinge part is subject to failure

Note this is designed for a small relatively lightweight camera, so not too surprising it doesn't stand up over time with more weight.

Scale the entire hinge section up x2 or x3 and it'll probably hold up. May want to bump your printing temp up 5 or 10 degrees C if you're printing on the lower side of the temperature range as well, for a little added melt to be sure the layer adhesion is good.

A few questions, then a few thoughts...

1) What material are you printing with?

2) What are your fundamental print settings? (Extrusion width, layer height, # of outlines, infill ratio, print speed, print temp, and overlap% because I think it might be relevant)

OK, so here's my $0.02...

  • Anywhere that there's a 90º between two surfaces will be a stress concentration point, especially if one it's a load-bearing joint. Add fillets to the sides of the "GoPro fingers" (that's the best name I can think of), and make them as wide of a radius as you can fit.

  • If you can, I would add teeth to the contact patches between the GoPro fingers (see attached picture). This will a) requires less tightening to maintain an angle (putting less stress on the plastic) and reduce tightening-untightening-retightening scenarios when you try to adjust it (reduced "cyclic loading" on the plastic)

  • If you're printing PLA, don't. Unless you print it pretty much solid, I don't think it would be strong enough for long-term use. PETG is just as easy to print with, and most printers can reach the minimum 230ºC. The big differences are a) NO COOLING whatsoever (except the hotend heatsink, of course), slow print speed, and moderately-fast retractions. The biggest problem with printing PETG is controlling stringing, and if you print these one at a time, I don't think it will be a problem for you.

If you're still having troubles, send me a PM and we can look at the solid model and your slicer settings. I don't mind helping at all, I love it when people use 3D printed stuff to add cool tech to their cars, but I've never seen a DSTAR unit installed! That's a pretty slick little unit, btw, can I ask how much you spent? and how big of an antenna does it need?

would it be an option to print the parts on the side down, instead of the big surface based down?
(assuming it was printed with the big flat front/back part down and the hinges toward up)
The printed structure would have a vertical flow when mounted, rather than horinzontal.
Where pressure migth be pullimg apart a layer section.

That might give more strength to the hinges while the weight pulls on it.
No design change would be needed, in case those hinges are flat/aligned with a side wall of the supporting base.

Just an idea to give more stability to where the weight and pressure pulls the weakes point.

As an additional small strength upgrade for the hinges, it might help to not have 90° corners, between the hinge bottom and the base part.
Rounding the edges to give a larger base on the hinge touching the base.
(looking at each piece laying with the big part down)

Regards, Angi

Printing on side down is needed.
You can also design some holes for some m3 screws and nuts to make the hinges more sturdier.
Actually, only holes for screws could be just fine, they can self-tap thus making the hinge sturdy.

A really simple fix would to make (or find) a mounting point in the top of ashtray opening, add enough length to the top plate to extend past the back of the radio, add a plate at 90 degrees to the top plate that is as tall as from the top plate to the top of the ashtray opening, add a narrow (1 inch, 25.4 mm wide by long enough to reach the mounting point) plate with a slot in the center for whatever screw is there at 90 (or whatever) degrees away from the back of the radio.
You will still have the hinge and the slot will allow adjustment in or out of level. Do it in ABS and it should last.