I must get these ideas for a sun tracker out, so I can move on to more pressing matters. I simply feel the need to develop an idea, and then set it aside for possible implementation in the future. Yesterday, I proposed some thoughts on building a spinning tiny house on wheels which would follow the path of the sun for the benefit of of solar heat in the winter and more natural light. See it here at Sun Tracking Tiny House.
I wasn’t very happy with the complexity of any of the previous designs. So here are two ideas that I think are simpler:
Any trailer with a ball coupler for towing, could be supported by a screw jack stand with a ball of the appropriate size on top of it. This would be the pivot point of the sun tracker system. The tail end of the trailer would be supported by two heavy duty trailer tongue jacks with pneumatic tires. The entire trailer is lifted up in the air so that all of the trailer tires are suspended. If at least one of these “landing gear” wheels were electrically driven by a gear reduced motor, the whole trailer could swing about a radius equal to the total length of the trailer. I feel that this design is simple enough and within my capabilities. It also doesn’t require completely rethinking the construction of a tiny house on wheels. In fact, it may be an afterthought for any tiny house on wheels. Most of the components for this are already available, with some creative modifications.
It is not without it’s problems though. The ground over which the landing gear travel needs to be almost perfectly level. Also, the size of the arc the house would travel to catch the winter sun would require a fair amount of ground space. It would also be more difficult to spin the whole house around on warm days, requiring MUCH more space. Perhaps the house could be flipped around end for end, twice a year manually, depending on the season. Definitely a major flaw.
Of course, it’s possible that the pivot point could be under the trailer load center, allowing the house to rotate about this central point. Install landing gear at equal distant points from the load center, and make them travel along the circumference of the arc formed by the house rotational path. One drive wheel again, or two on opposing sides. To support some of the weight and help prevent the “Spirograph Effect”, a screw jack like the one that supported the tongue in the previous proposal, would support a ball coupler installed underneath the trailer frame at the intended pivot point.
I researched jacks and powered trailer dollies a little bit. This is very much possible, but I’m ready to think about other things. I’d love to see somebody build this! It’ll be a few years until I give it much for thought! Bye, for now.