"Drone It Yourself" kit, and in action (via Jasper van Loenen)
3D printers are just beginning to blossom into the giants they will soon become. Due to the declining price and increased support in the community, it is becoming more commonplace to see small companies and hobbyist with access to these machines. For the people with or without one it has been truly inspiring to witness what has been made by these machines and how quickly they are progressing. One area that will soon flourish due to 3D printing will be toys.
One example of a great product from 3D printing is the “Drone It Yourself” kit. Created by Jasper van Loenen, this kit will let you turn anything into a flying object. Most of the parts that are needed can be 3D printed straight from the original designs, or custom made to fit your personal needs. The kit allows people with no education in radio controlled technology to turn anything they wish into a flying object. Examples of the finished product being used included a bicycle rim flying through the air, a keyboard taking off into the air and an old phone getting clamped together and ready for flight.
Jasper has made the list of required parts available through his website, http://jaspervanloenen.com/diy/. Other than the 3D parts, the kit includes a receiver, four electronic speed controllers, a Bluetooth module, and an OpenPilot CC3D flight controller. Jasper has recently submitted his creation into a contest on the Instructables website. If you like his idea, you should check out his website or help him out and give him a vote for the contest he has entered. After all, it is pretty cool to see a bike tire flying through the park.
T8 Spiderbot, the creepiest 3D printed toy
Another 3D printed, remote controlled creation that has surfaced recently is the T8 Spiderbot. Honestly, I am not too afraid of spiders, but this thing gives me the creeps at how eerily lifelike its movement is. The bot is created and designed by Robugtix.com, a website centered around creating bio-inspired robots. In addition, the robot features their patented Bigfoot Inverse Kinematics Engine. As their website says, “This engine automatically handles all of the complex math theory and calculations required to control a multi-legged walking robot which means that users can focus on what they actually want the robot to do, without having to worry about the complicated details.”
The Spiderbot's structure is made mostly from 3D printed parts, which will come included in the kit. Furthermore, 26 servo motors lay hidden inside which make all the lifelike movements possible. Users can choose to control the bot through an optional Robugtix controller or through their own custom made designs. Communicating with the bot is done through serial communication using xBees, so any method of communication through Tx/Rx pins will work. The Spiderbot is going for $1,350.00, which is a good chunk of change for the average hacker. However, their product is the result of years of research and development. They are available now for pre-order online and are expected to ship at the end of September this year.
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