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Need Some Help / Ideas for Clutch Pedal with Prothesis

 
Old 04-29-2019, 10:17 AM
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AdamMeh
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Default Need Some Help / Ideas for Clutch Pedal with Prothesis

I need to come up with a block of some sort to add to my clutch pedal. Due to having a prosthetic left leg, I'm unable to push the clutch pedal to the floor. I can't flex my foot for the final couple of inches of travel, and my heel is hitting the floor pan before the clutch pedal is fully depressed. My brother mocked up a wooden block for me to use as a test and we got the thickness correct (I can drive a 4 speed again! Woot!), but I need a permanent solution.

Was thinking a plastic or aluminum block? I don't have much of a background in fabrication, so I'm at a loss on how to proceed. My goal would be to have the block made with a channel cut in it so I could slip on a replacement rubber pedal pad and have it look "stock". Paint the block black and that's good enough for my needs. The block size and the channel would need to replicate the same size and thickness as the pedal is from the factory so the pedal pad will stay in place.

I would be willing to pay someone to make this part for me if it's within reason. I checked a local machine shop with a water jet, but they wanted $300 to make it. Hoping to find something a little more reasonable for the wallet??

Here is a shot of the testing block we did to give you some idea of what I need. Yes, I know this is very crude, but it helped me get a handle on the situation and I was able to drive the car some to get a feel for it. Man it felt good to bang gears again!

Thanks in advance for any help with this.
Adam



Rebuilding - so now's the time to get it done.



Last edited by AdamMeh; 04-29-2019 at 10:45 AM.
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Old 04-29-2019, 10:36 AM
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Might be a suitable project for a 3-D printer. Check with area schools, maybe.
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Old 04-29-2019, 10:48 AM
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Hey Dalton - thanks for that idea. Hadn't even crossed my mind!
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Old 04-30-2019, 06:16 AM
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why dont you just take another clutch pedal and cut themetal pad off, take a piece of square tubing and weld that accross the face off the old one and weld the second pedal on top of that. Both problems solved.
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Old 04-30-2019, 07:09 AM
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I love solving problems like this and wish I was closer.

The clutch is mechanically four pieces working together to disengage the transmission as I recall.

Clutch pedal, rod from clutch pedal to the Z-bar; Z-bar itself; rod from Z-bar to the transmission. Stay with me for a minute because it is about the angles. If the rod from clutch pedal to the Z-bar were longer it would disengage the clutch sooner meaning you push the pedal down a shorter distance, correct? So could the Z-bar or the rod from clutch pedal to Z-bar be modified (or both) by changing the size or angle slightly to get a shorter throw on the clutch pedal?

Now if it would help I have an extra Z-bar here at home and I have the clutch pedal to z-bar rod I believe. If modifying it would work I am glad to send them to you for modification attempts.

I may need a second cup of coffee but that seems to me it might work.

If I am wrong I apologize, just trying to help.

David Howard
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PS: The arms on the Z-Bar are 90 degrees off of the Z-bar rod. Maybe if "curved" it could be at the same location when in the engaged position but travel would disengage the clutch sooner if it was relocated on the rod and had a curve to it. I know I am not describing it very well, might have to draw it up to have it make sense. Sorry.

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Old 04-30-2019, 07:22 AM
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I located this drawing and picture on the internet, not mine, but thought they may trigger a light bulb of thought. Maybe it will help understand the geometry of the z-bar.
Good luck.
David



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Old 04-30-2019, 07:40 AM
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how much free travel before clutch starts to disengage? adjust rod longer until there is almost none. that will raise the disengage point higher off the floor. .a new clutch disc could also help. as they age, the spread a little when released requiring more pressure plate travel to fully disengage. another stock looking approach is cut the clutch pedal lever and re-weld it at a slight angle raising the pedal higher off the floor. the whole pedal, not just the front side. then there is also clutch switch adjustment to remember to deal with.

Last edited by derekderek; 04-30-2019 at 07:41 AM.
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Old 04-30-2019, 07:46 AM
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Old 04-30-2019, 08:55 AM
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As I see it-

The shorter the throw- the MORE force will be required-

Something like this could accomplish what you are looking to do.

It's just a simple piece of 1/4 steel with a couple holes drilled in it- changes the leverage and throw of the clutch pedal- $5? some drill bits- a couple of bolts...No CAD - 3-d printer or Bridgeport mill needed!

You can move the rod lower and get more travel-

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Old 04-30-2019, 09:47 AM
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Yes, changing angles, lengthing rods and moving holes will all muliply the force to move the pedal a shorter distance. Just make the pedal taller and solve the issue....or get a special driving prosthesis with a shorter foot, which would just be more expensive.

I mechanic friend out in Utah lost a hand in a roll over and one of his friends works for a company that builds prosthetics. He has a " hand" that has special sockets for all sorts of tools.

Personally i would just weld another pedal on top of the pedal and be done with it. No need to over engineer or make it into a major production
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Old 04-30-2019, 12:26 PM
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x2
cut & weld it so theres no need for a block, you wont see it. A Hyd slave may make things easier

Anyone know if there is electric assist available? May be needing something like that one day myself, cant bring myself to go auto

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Old 04-30-2019, 01:46 PM
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brilliant minds at work
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Old 04-30-2019, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by cuisinartvette View Post
x2
cut & weld it so theres no need for a block, you wont see it. A Hyd slave may make things easier

Anyone know if there is electric assist available? May be needing something like that one day myself, cant bring myself to go auto


I went with Hyd- and there is electric clutch out-BUT neither are really cost effective.

Now have less throw and am going to lengthen it but with less effort like below-



Electric Clutch-

http://www.mega-line.de/index.php/en/products/clutch

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Old 04-30-2019, 06:32 PM
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Wow... I've said it before and I'll say it again. This forum is awesome. Thank you so much for all the ideas guys! I shouldn't have a problem making this work now. I love driving a 4 speed, and had to fight to keep that right on my license after my leg, so I really do appreciate the help - all of you.

Adam
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Old 04-30-2019, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by AdamMeh View Post
I need to come up with a block of some sort to add to my clutch pedal. Due to having a prosthetic left leg, I'm unable to push the clutch pedal to the floor. I can't flex my foot for the final couple of inches of travel, and my heel is hitting the floor pan before the clutch pedal is fully depressed. My brother mocked up a wooden block for me to use as a test and we got the thickness correct (I can drive a 4 speed again! Woot!), but I need a permanent solution.

Was thinking a plastic or aluminum block? I don't have much of a background in fabrication, so I'm at a loss on how to proceed. My goal would be to have the block made with a channel cut in it so I could slip on a replacement rubber pedal pad and have it look "stock". Paint the block black and that's good enough for my needs. The block size and the channel would need to replicate the same size and thickness as the pedal is from the factory so the pedal pad will stay in place.

I would be willing to pay someone to make this part for me if it's within reason. I checked a local machine shop with a water jet, but they wanted $300 to make it. Hoping to find something a little more reasonable for the wallet??

Here is a shot of the testing block we did to give you some idea of what I need. Yes, I know this is very crude, but it helped me get a handle on the situation and I was able to drive the car some to get a feel for it. Man it felt good to bang gears again!

Thanks in advance for any help with this.
Adam



Rebuilding - so now's the time to get it done.

the top pic. right about where the razor knife is pointing at the clutch lever. cut a V in the front of the lever around there. bend lever forward and weld it at the new angle-height. but do some playing with duct tape and wood to get the height you want first. and get it adjusted up to highest doable point first.
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Old 04-30-2019, 11:20 PM
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I have a really nice 3D printer (a Lulzbot Taz 6), which is usually employed to make trinkets, and the occasional Corvette part.

If there is something that can be easily fabricated, perhaps similar to the wood block your brother made, please PM me and send some pictures or a diagram. I'd be happy to make a few test pieces to see what works for you. I have an 80 4-speed to test it on, assuming the pedal is the same shape.

My initial thought would be a trapezoidal notch that slides behind the pedal to capture it, and a pin or sliding shim to hold onto the top so it doesn't fall off.
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:33 AM
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Thanks again for all the awesome ideas guys! Bikespace - thanks for offering to go above and beyond - I would have taken you up on your offer, but I had already found a local shop to get it done for me prior to reading your response.

I decided that I really wanted to end up with something that could be returned to "original" if needed, so a removable block was the route I went. I found a local shop to make the block for me and I think this will work out great for my needs. Overall, I'm very happy with how this assembly turned out.

Thanks again,
Adam


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Old 05-07-2019, 07:30 AM
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Very cool! Glad you'll be back driving a 4 speed again.
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Old 05-07-2019, 07:32 AM
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I'm glad it worked out for you! Enjoy the drive.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by AdamMeh View Post
Thanks again for all the awesome ideas guys! Bikespace - thanks for offering to go above and beyond - I would have taken you up on your offer, but I had already found a local shop to get it done for me prior to reading your response.
...

Thanks again,
Adam

Need more information! My daughter is only 5 feet and getting the clutch to the floor requires acrobatics on her part.

A block of wood and duct tape would likely do the job, but...

Great that you've solved the problem!
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