Steve's Shipyard


Destroyers! Z-38

How to build the pump

This awesome 1/2 unit pump is easy to make, smaller than any commercially available pump, and much lighter. In addition, I think it is most effective, pumping 1.5 gallons per minute out of a simple 3/16 ID brass tubing outlet. The ruler is provided in the above photo, so you can see how the pump easily fits in the middle of the ship, where most of the water will go. There is a bit of superstructure covering the pump, where it passes through a hole in the deck.

The motor is the first secret ingredient. Well, it used to be a secret, but now, thanks to our web site, here it is. It's a Traxis starter motor, found in almost any R/C car hobby shop. The Traxis part number is 4578, and it goes for about $12. The pump comes with a gear that you will have to remove. I got mine for free, because the R/C guys can't use them if the gear comes off the shaft.(*smile*)

The other thing I like about the Traxis motor is it is very close in motor size to the drive motors commonly used for Destroyers. As you can see, the motor is smaller, and is quite a bit lighter, than the Battler's Connection small motor. In fact, the whole pump is about the same height as a standard 550 motor, and about half the weight.

The pump itself is a Carl Camurati full size pump that I modified with a new lexan top to mount to the holes in the small pump motor. Carl builds a great pump. It's essentially a brass impeller soldered up with a wheel collar that locks onto the motor shaft with a setscrew. The impeller is inside a resin casting, with covers on the top and bottom held together with bolts on all four corners. Simple but effective.

The pump only has 2 inches of hose, and no sharp bends in the outlet. The inlet has a simple screen on the bottom of the pump. The wire is 12 gauge with a Deans Ultra Plug connector. I used the red ultraplug (on the left) for the pump power, and main battery power. The Deans connector (on the right) was used for wiring my solenoid and drive motors to my radio box.

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