by SamM, published
Now you can recreate 19th century motion picture technology with your 21st century printer!
Alright, so technically the first zoetrope was invented in 180 AD, but they didn't really take off until the 19th century.
Essentially a Zoetrope (wheel of life) is a spinning wheel with an short animation on the inside. There is a slit for each frame that acts like a shutter, once the wheel is spun it creates an illusion of the frames playing sequentially, bringing the animation to life.
Here is a GIF of a Zoetrope playing a GIF
Each frame is designed to hold a small piece of paper. You can draw your own, or print out your favorite short animation or animated GIF.
This is a vertical zoetrope that lets you set the size and number of frames in the animation, how far back the frames are pushed to create the shutter slits, and how large of a stand. The wheel and stand are interchangeable, so you can also select which parts you wish to print and easily swap out animations.
A few important notes:
1) The outside of the wheel should either be printed with black filament, or painted black later. Having a wheel that's colored or brighter than the inside image can make the animation very hard to see.
2) The larger the frames the easier it is to see the animation. As printer platforms continue to increase in size, the larger and longer these animations can become.
3) While the parts can be snapped together in some cases, you will always get the best results by gluing together the + connectors in the handlebar.
4) There is a 2mm "clip" on the top and bottom of each frame to help keep the paper in place. Given that most printers produce "spillover" this becomes more like 1-1.5mm. Make sure to plan your frame sizes accordingly.
5) If the size of the shutter slits are too large the animation becomes blurry. To small and it becomes dim. Right now you will have to experiment to find the best result for your animation.