Yet another reason to get a laser-cutter
July 17, 2009 9:24 PM   Subscribe

Build your own strandbeest (laser-cutter required) [via]

Theo Jansen's Strandbeest has been discussed previously, but this is the first time I've seen the movement explained. I'd like to see the 'springy-tuned legs' concept applied to this design.
posted by mhjb (9 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Pushed for time? skip the FPP and go straight to this animation of the movement.
posted by mhjb at 9:26 PM on July 17, 2009

In one sense, it seems like a kind of impractical design, the motion looks like it's fixed, just based on cams, so you have very little flexibility in terms of freedom of motion, and you can see in the video it appears to have a lot of trouble just moving in a straight line.

On the other hand, it could be a lot simpler to build then a robot that has more articulation and has to balance itself.
posted by delmoi at 10:03 PM on July 17, 2009

That gait animation is hypnotic.
posted by Ritchie at 12:07 AM on July 18, 2009

What Ritchie said.

I wuz going to link to the gif before I clicked and read [MORE INSIDE].

I know just enough about mathematics and mechanical engineering to realise what an absolute dunce I really am.

Simple. Graceful. Elegant. Hypnotic. Genius. All those words, and some.

This project is heavily influenced by Theo Jansen's natural gearing mechanism, it’s a very efficient mechanical leg design for converting rotary motion into leg movements, and is very elegant in my opinion.

The basis is the relative distance of the 12 joins, Jansen calls them "The 12 Holy Numbers". The numbers were developed with a genetic algorithm. In a couple of interviews that he wrote the evolver on a Atari STe computer and it took literally months of 1990’s processing power to find the solution.

posted by uncanny hengeman at 12:16 AM on July 18, 2009 [1 favorite]

Pretty. Can't turn. But pretty.
posted by rokusan at 12:45 AM on July 18, 2009

It's even creepy in Lego.
posted by rokusan at 1:06 AM on July 18, 2009

Pretty. Can't turn. But pretty.

That's what I thought, but if you watch some of the other videos, you can see it can rotate by changing the phase of the cams on the left and right side.
posted by delmoi at 2:04 AM on July 18, 2009

I am so having my students build this next semester.
posted by signal at 6:59 AM on July 18, 2009

A man with a laser cutter should be able to mount a gear on a servo so it is close to true (see the video at 0:42). It does look awesome in the clear acrylic.
posted by nowoutside at 7:27 AM on July 18, 2009

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