by chriskpalmer, published

Sphericons by chriskpalmer Nov 19, 2010



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Concept by Colin J. Roberts and Paul J. Roberts. Please see their website for more information and history: http://www.pjroberts.com/sphericon/index.php

Some have two positions. In the picture see the amusing paths that these objects (the ones without "Stop" in the filename) will roll along.

3D Modeled by Chris K. Palmer

Printed by Jeff Rutzky. See his model in action here: http://www.vimeo.com/16985828

I uploaded these with Paul's permission to commemorate the arrival of my Cupcake CNC!


The HexaSphericon was successfully printed on a CupCake CNC by Jeff Rutzky. He put 3mm rare earth magnets into it to allow for the two parts to be put together into all the possible positions. All the uploaded models have the small square holes like the rendering of the part with the bottom side up and visible shows to receive 3mm rare earth magnets.

The models with "Stop" in the file name will not have a continuous roll path like the ones in the rendering but instead will roll until hitting a stop flat spot. The rendering without paths shows some but not all of the other Sphericons with stops as well as the ones without stops.

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do you need an angled surface to make them roll? or a ball/magnet inside?


They work?
How!? =-O

I went to school with Paul. There that's my current claim to fame - i'm working on others :)

VisCAM View measured the holes as 4mm. That seemed a bit large for my 3.2mm magnets, so I built it at 75% on my SD300. At that scale, the magnets fit snugly in the holes and they became neatly anchored after I dipped the parts in PVC welding solvent (Weld-On 2007). This technique might also work with ABS using acetone, too.

My PVC models have just the right weight to roll perfectly, so I've posted movies of the HexaSphericon and OctaSphericon on my blog entry at http://mysd300.blogspot.com/2010/12/sphericons.htmlhttp://mysd300.blogspot.com/20...

Looks great!

I made the square holes 4mm to allow for a technique my friend Jeff Rutzky was using to put a little piece of surgical rubber tube in with the magnet to hold it in place.

Your solution to scale it down a bit seems like a good one to get a tight fit for the 3.2mm magnets.

Glad to see it realized
and the movie shows the charm of the quirky path well.

These are neat. I made an octasphiricon. It took me three tries to put it together right!

I printed at my standard low density, but I think these need to be 100% filled. If it is too light it doesn't gain enough momentum to get around sharp turns, and has a tendency to flip over an edge and stall. It will help to have a smoother surface finish too.

I had trouble printing full sized, b
ut 75% worked okay. I just used dowels to hold it together. I'm definitely going to try again. If I can get it to work well I'll probably try some of the others!

I filled my sphericon with plasticine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plasticinehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P..., since I don't have these special magnets of dovel in my possesion. Interesting side-effect is that the object gets heavier.

Sounds like fun! You might try filling it with clay to make it heavier. By the way if you did fill it with clay the hole made by the ones with no stop will make one with a stop and vice versa.

Why not try odd numbered ones? Then you would get multiple versions as you try different orientations. With the odd numbers you would have stops built in.


I did originally model the odd ones too (see http://www.pjroberts.com/sphericon/index.phpwww.pjroberts.com/sphericon/in... above for info on them) but I was interested in the ones with continuous paths not the ones that would have a "stop". It is not much trouble to include them though so as per your request I have uploaded them as well


Chris K. Palmer