by emmett, published
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We just put one of these together, and painted it. This is a delightful little gadget, thank you for posting it!
You should make little pieces that you can glue on the ends with the screws so that it looks like a full cube.... Or maybe i'll do it...
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Use a screw to tap threads into the center block first, because it makes it easier to assemble. No glue needed, the screws should stay tightly in the center block while the gears revolve. Attach the gears, making sure the edges of the cube connect them. If the gears are too tight to spin easily, just unscrew them all a millimeter or two.
The OpenSCAD file is highly parameterized to allow easy tweaking (for different proportions, screw sizes, etc.). You can also change the ratio of teeth on the gears, but you'll need to put the desired parameters into gearopt.m and run in Matlab (or Octave) and copy the result into the OpenSCAD file. This is necessary because I couldn't solve the geometry with anything but an iteration loop, which OpenSCAD doesn't handle so well. I used the MCAD library for Greg's involute gears github.com/elmom/MCAD.
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