Motorized Cube Gears
by dougc314, published
I built it (Emmett's that is) and was showing it around work. One of my favorite collaborators (Brian C.) and I were discussing motorizing it. I had visions of a tiny motor in the center, and was fussing over battery size, etc. when Brian suggested blowing a hole through one of the big corners and connecting a drive shaft to the center to an external motor. A quick look on Ebay found a motor, and when it came in the mail I started in on the design. I designed the parts in Alibre, sorry, OpenSCAD is a very impressive tool, but I am too CAD oriented). I did import the stl of the gear into Alibre. The zip file has the Alibre files and STEP AP203 exports as well.
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Awesome, thanks so much for doing that. I was actually thinking of making a similar modification, but haven't had any time lately. I'm going to be showing the printer at a technology in higher education conference in March and am hoping I can have a motorized cube gears running at my display table.
I reviewed my design, (to remember exactly how I did it). I used epoxy glue to glue the nut into the hex recess. With my build, if the cube binds (I have smoothed so it doesn't) but if I hold the cube, the motor stalls, and the nut holds. It's possible your motor is stronger. I will look into redesigning the shaft so that it actually captures the nut, but give me a couple of days.
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My exact assembly process was:
print Emmetts parts, thing #10483
print my three parts. (not motorflange2.stl)
remove one of the big corners and pin, and the three associated small corners and pins.
glue the nuts into the motor-gear flange and drive shaft(4-40 large pattern) and let set.
attach the motor to the gear flange (bgear1motorflange2.stl)
screw the drive shaft onto the motor shaft and then glue other end of the drive shaft into the center hole where the removed corner was. I used a thick piece of paper to gap the center. Be sure to align the center correctly (mine is wrong, although it doesn't matter too much)
Wait for the epoxy to cure, and reattach the three smaller corners.
I then cut a USB extension cable to the desired length, stripped the cut end and epoxied the cable into the base. I had to attach the red, or positive USB voltage to the motor NEG terminal to get it to turn in the correct direction.
Epoxy the motor into the base.
With the motor I used USB power barely makes it go, I assume if I polish all the pins a bit to remove friction it would run more smoothly.
Video at youtube.com/watch?v=TjBAd8S2Yms
I guess I don't know how to add parts properly, so while I figure that out I'll add the url here
1/19/11: Due to a builders issue I have added a redesigned drive shaft that captures the nut, so that it isn't just glue holding the cube onto the motor shaft.
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