Help required in washing machine project

Hello All, I am from software background and new to electronics and Hardware world. I recently bought an Arduino just for learning. I am starting a new project - to build a washing machine. Basically I am looking for suggestions on - selection of motor and its drivers, other required circuits. what would be the motor if the required load to drive is about 10Kg? Any links? Do I need to use any gear boxes so that I can use a low powered motor ?

Thanks Aby

Buy a commercial washing machine (you get them cheap on ebay) and replace just the electronics with your Arduino if you want more features. If you do the mechanics yourself the slightest unbalance may injure you seriously.

BTW: this is not a beginners project. Start with some easy sketches and drive LEDs and such stuff. You should have an education or experience with electric stuff before using high voltage applications.

Hi Pylon,

I have done some basics projects. I have done some home automation stuff that can be controlled from PC software / Mobile with an Arduino as well . so just thought of doing a washing machine since my commercial washing machine is always giving me problems . The service technician says that the 'PCB is gone' . Since this is a frequent issue, I thought of doing one. I am more eager to know about the mechanical advantage of gear. If any of the member has taken the mechanical advantage with gears ( I am sure it is possible with pulley) then it should be possible to drive the load with small DC motors.

I'd suggest, rather as Pylon did, that even if you plan to build a machine from scratch, it would be a very useful learning experience as a prerequisite for that project to replace the broken PCB in your existing system with an arduino.

If you are coming from a software background, or even an electronics background, to a mechanical project then a key thing to think about is momentum. In software and electronics you are used to everything happening instantly. With mechanical systems you have to think of accelerating and decelerating masses and the time and energy involved. You also need to think about containment - if you have a mechanical failure how will you contain the sudden release of stored energy.

I agree with the comments about replacing the control board. That in itself sounds like quite a fair project and a good incremental step towards replacing parts of the mechanism.