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Archive for the ‘3D printing’ Category

If you want to build your own first-person view RC rover for some backyard exploration, this design by “MoreMorris” is a great place to start.

The tank-esque vehicle features a 3D-printed frame, including print-in-place tracks, and is able to traverse rough terrain as seen in the video below. Meanwhile, a servo-mounted FPV camera on top allows it to look left and right without swinging the body around.

Inside the vehicle, an Arduino Uno board controls its two motors with the help of an L298N driver module. User interface consists of a Nano-based remote, while communication is handled via a pair of nRF21L01 radio transceivers.

Plenty of additional project info is available in MoreMorris’s write-up.

Imaging phantoms are used to evaluate and test medical devices, such as X-ray machinery, where a human subject would be impractical and/or dangerous. In order to simulate the motion and deformation of a lung, Stefan Grimm created an Arduino-powered phantom at a materials cost of around $350 USD.

Much of the project’s structure is printed with dissolvable PVA, used as a form for silicone that mimics tissue and plaster for bone. Movement is controlled via three linear and rotary actuator setups outlined here, and the structure can either be pre-programmed or manipulated in real-time using a USB cable and PC.

You can see a simulation of the setup in the video below, tracking target objects as they move along with cylinders that represent respiratory motion.

Cable-mounted cameras can be a lot of fun for capturing moving footage. Although commercial cable cam options can be expensive, this system by Kasper Mortensen of MAKESOME is comprised of 3D-printed components with a receiver and wheel salvaged from an RC car.

The build was meant to use some of the toy vehicle’s other components, however after some trial and error outlined in the clip below, more involved measures had to be taken.

Everything is powered by a Tattu 650mAh 3S LiPo battery, while an Arduino Nano and an L298N dual H-bridge are used to control the motor (taken from an old HP printer) speed, adjustable between multiple settings by engaging the transmitter’s throttle switch. Final results come around the 13:40 minute mark in the video, and the footage looks fantastic!

One of the simplest ways to make a mobile robot involves differential steering, where two wheels move at different speeds as needed to turn, and a roller on the back keeps it from tipping over. The MrK_Blockvader is an excellent take on this type of bot, demonstrated in the first clip below. It features a nice blocky body comprised out of 3D-printed parts, wheels driven by tiny gear motors, and an integrated roller ball on the back.

The MrK_Blockvader is controlled via an Arduino Nano, along with an nRF24 breakout that allows it to receive signals from a radio transmitter unit. The build includes LED lighting as well as a piezo buzzer for all the beeps and boops. It can also take advantage of various sensors if necessary.

The eventual goal is to use the MrK_Blockvader in a network of robots, hinted at in the second video with a worker at its side.

If you’d like to build a walking biped robot, this 3D-printed design by Technovation looks like a fantastic place to start. Each leg features three servos that actuate it at the hip, knee, and ankle for a total of six degrees of freedom.

Control is handled by an Arduino Uno board that rides on top of the legs, along with a perfboard to connect to the servos directly.

Movements are calculated via inverse kinematics, meaning one simply has to input the x and z positions, and the Arduino calculates the proper servo angles. The bot is even able to take steps between two and 10 centimeters without falling over.

How do we know that planets exist outside of our solar system? While too far away to observe directly, with extremely sensitive equipment like the Kepler space telescope it’s possible to detect changes in light as these exoplanets pass in front of a star. For an excellent visualization of how this all works, check out Marcin Poblock’s simplified model in the video below.

The 3D-printed apparatus employs an Arduino Nano that controls the motion of two planets around a light bulb “star,” via a stepper motor and gear system. The variable light is then sensed by an LDR on a separate Nano-driven device. This sends info to a computer over serial to be graphed in real-time, and can also store it on an SD card for later analysis. 

While this project won’t necessarily help you explore our galaxy, it will provide you with a fun way to learn about the principle of exoplanet detection using the transit method.

3D printing allows us to make a wide variety of shapes, but adding interactive features generally means somehow strapping various electronics to them. The AirTouch project, however, presents an alternative option by enabling a fabricated object to sense up to a dozen different touch points with no components or complex calibration necessary. 

Instead compressed air is pumped into the 3D-printed item, which escapes via up to 12 tiny holes. As each hole is touched, a barometric sensor picks up the pressure response, which is then interpreted by an Arduino Uno board as user input. 

The system has been tested on a variety of interactive figures, from a model rabbit to a bar graph. A short demo can be seen below, while the project’s research paper is found here.

As a fun weekend project at home, Arnaud Atchimon and his son came up with a DIY laser blaster game comprised of a 3D-printed shooter and target setup.

Both devices are controlled by an Arduino Nano, and when the gun is powered up, you can either have 10 shots on target before a reload delay or go into “Stormtrooper” mode for full auto-blasting.

The target assembly senses hits with an LDR sensor and features a 24-LED NeoPixel ring that makes it easy to spot. When struck, it falls either forward or backwards under the power of a micro servo motor, allowing the unit to be used on a flat surface or mounted to the wall.

Will Cogley, known for his awesome animatronics, has created a robotic mouth that’s already a work of art and could form the basis of something even more amazing. 

The device features an array of servo mechanisms to actuate its jaw, forceps, cheeks, and a tongue. The cheek assemblies are particularly interesting, employing two servos each and a linkage system that allows it to move in a variety of positions.

For control, the project uses a Python program to break typed sentences up into individual sounds. It then sends these to an Arduino, which poses the mouth in sequence. Cogley has also experimented with microphone input and hopes to explore motion capture with it in the future.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, and while making your own medical equipment isn’t normally advisable, Johnny Lee’e project explores how to turn a CPAP machine into a ventilator.

The idea is that since these machines are basically just blowers controlled by a brushless DC motor, an Arduino Nano equipped with an electonic speed controller could allow it to act as a one.

Such a setup has been shown to provide more than enough pressure for a ventilator used on COVID-19 patients. This device has in no way been evaluated or approved for medical use, but it does provide a starting point for experimentation.

You can find additional details on Lee’s GitHub page.



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