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Printable caterpillar track

by carlosgs, published

Printable caterpillar track by carlosgs Dec 8, 2012

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Description

Testing a caterpillar track that is printable in one piece :)

UPDATE: Here is a video! youtube.com/watch?v=nigrV9n9658

UPDATE 2: New version 1.2 of the tracks and wheels: more curve to avoid slipping

Recent Comments

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i see, thank you! Awesome!

The tracks were printed with green PLA from RepRapWorld.com. I have found it is more flexible than PLA from faberdashery.co.uk (first design, printed in yellow), which makes it better for this purpose.

What plastic is this printed with?

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Instructions

Scad code is messy, but i wanted to publish the promising results ASAP :)

Notes:
- [DONE] An idler is required to reduce lateral force in the servo axis
- [DONE] The chain needs to be even more curve to prevent it from slipping out
- Still need to figure out a nice chassis


In order to print the tracks, I use Cura (https://github.com/daid/Cura) and a 0.5mm nozzle.
Settings in Cura:
Bottom/Top thickness = 0mm
Wall thickness = 0.5mm
Fill density = 0%
Solid infill top = OFF
Joris the outer edge = ON

These settings will print the track as a continuous, single-walled spiral, which makes them very flexible and resistant :)

Comments

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msurguy on Jan 7, 2013 said:

What plastic is this printed with?

carlosgs on Jan 7, 2013 said:

The tracks were printed with green PLA from RepRapWorld.com. I have found it is more flexible than PLA from faberdashery.co.uk (first design, printed in yellow), which makes it better for this purpose.

biddoof on Dec 15, 2012 said:

Is nobody building this on the Replicator 2 using MakerWare?  I've tried everything and it always fills the first layer.

jfpion on Dec 13, 2012 said:

I made a more cleaner scad code for the track, the wheel will come soon. I add the possibility to have mores wheels for larger track, snow blade each x teeth:

r=45 ; // outter radius of track
h=6; //heigth of track teeth

n=50;// nb of teeth of the track keep 9/10 ratio radius/nb of teeth

t=1;//perimeters width

w=15; //track width

ri=7.5;//radius of the internal wheel at least 1/2 of the width of the track

pi=3.14159;

j=1;//nb of internal wheel for large track

tw=pi*r/n;//perimetral size of tooth

b=0;//blade each teeth -for snow track, keep integer ratio with the number of teeth set to 0 for none

sb=3;//size of the snow blades

union(){

linear_extrude(height = w)teeth();

linear_extrude(height = w)jante();

for(i=[1:j])

translate([0,0,i*w/(j+1)])scale([1,1,1])rotate_extrude()innershape();

}

module teeth(){

for(i=[1:n])rotate([0,0,i*360/n])

polygon(points=[[r-t,2*tw/3],[r-h-t,tw/3],[r-t,-2*tw/3],[r-h-t,-tw/3]],paths=[[0,1,3,2]]);

if (b > 0)

{

for(i=[1:n/b])rotate([0,0,i*b*360/n])

polygon(points=[[r-t,2*tw/3],[r-h-t,tw/3],[r-t,-2*tw/3],[r-h-t,-tw/3],[r-t+b,0]],paths=[[0,1,3,2,4]]);

}

}

module jante(){

circle(r-h);

}

module innershape(){

translate([r-h/2-ri,0,0])circle(ri);

}

hope this help

because the derivative code from the bracelet is a bit messy !
 

biddoof on Dec 12, 2012 said:

Can anyone provide guidance on printing this on a R2?  Using MakerWare?

I see the option to print without infill, but it still tries to print what looks like a bottom layer (before I stop the print).  I don't see any options to not draw a top/bottom layer.

Thanks!

(FYI I'm working on cura/replicatorG but it has it's own list of problems I'm trying to work through just to get it to print anything at all)

jonny on Dec 10, 2012 said:

What type of servo did you use? Brand and size?

carlosgs on Dec 10, 2012 said:

Those are Futaba 3003 modified for continuous rotation removing the electronics.
But it was just for the first test, I am planning to use SpringRC S4303R (360⁰ continuous servo).

pintokitkat on Dec 10, 2012 said:

What am I doing wrong - the track is a solid disk?

Daid on Dec 10, 2012 said:

Print it without infill/up/downskin. This garantees a good solid single line. Same trick is used with some bracelets and most models from "Joris"

jfpion on Dec 10, 2012 said:

I made a little modification in the caterpilar track scad file:
to make wider track I made the number of circular bump in the base parametric.

m=50;// number of bendy parts around the circle
nb=3;// number of circular bump on base

internal_radius = 3; //9
 
and made the other modification :

for(i=[1:nb]){

in the module base1 and module base2

so you can increase the width of the track ans add the number of circular bump you need.

I plan to make a ski doo so it is better to have larger track

by the way if a open scad wizard coul explain how to make a transversal fin each 5  zig zag (to increase traction on snow) ....

it coul add some versability to the design

carlosgs on Dec 10, 2012 said:

This is why I love open-hardware :)

I will try those parameters in a moment, thanks for the feedback! :PMore iterations are required to get the perfect chain pattern!

emmett on Dec 10, 2012 said:

Awesome, I'm glad someone finally made a real tank out of these. People kept suggesting it, but I don't have any motors lying around. Well done.

carlosgs on Dec 10, 2012 said:

Thanks Emmett, I love all your designs!! they are very inspirational :)

gwc on Dec 9, 2012 said:

You took arround 2 hours to make it into the Featured list! Congratulations!!!

By the way, its awesome!

obijuan on Dec 9, 2012 said:

Your design is amazing!!! Congratulations! 

thecrazy on Dec 9, 2012 said:

Looking good. I like the one piece tracks. Way less hardware required.

exergy123 on Dec 9, 2012 said:

Great!!

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