For the final class I decided to assemble the final part of the worm to the rollers. In order to let the whole structure move forward, i located the two motors inside of a wooden cube.
With the help of Michael, we changed the hitters from the motors and we simplified them. After this, I had to connect the backside with the motors to the rest, and Tim suggested to use some thread, in order to avoid that some parts might remain still and fixed.
In the end, the worm looked like this, and it was able to move the rolls (more or less) after being hit and move forward (if it did not get stuck before). It was actually very challenging for me finishing it in 3 days, and getting to know the materials and all the possibilities. Sometimes it was not so easy to decide which one was the better solution for some of the issues, because I didn’t have much experience with making robots (or pseudo-robots) before.
After building the structure, the next step was moving all the wheels forward just by rotating and pushing the last one. First of all, we add an aluminium piece to the motor, so that it would be possible to kick on the last wheel. In order to check the different movements produced by it, I added some anti sliding material, but no big differences were observed.
The wheels didn’t move (of course) as they were expected, and Tim suggested to locate the worm between two pieces of wood. Therefore, it would be possible to rotate the hitter from the motor and (maybe) getting a bigger displacement, but then displacement of the object would be very different to the one I had in mind. Let’s see.
It took some time learning how to make a thread in the aluminium piece to fix it to the motor, cutting it and also recutting the last cogwheel in a (slightly) more precise way.
For the next & last class I planned some more changes:
-adding a second motor.
-locating the motors inside of a wooden cube, so that the two hitters help the structure to move forward after hitting the cogwheel(working as crutches)
-changing the first wheel depending on the necessary weight.
Let’s hope it works.
Biomimicry was this year’s topic for the workshop. With this idea in mind, I started on the first day trying to emulate the movement of an earthworm (although my first idea was creating a sea cucumber to make it more related to the aquatic ecosystem).
After gathering some information about worms and peristaltic movements, I decided trying to simplify it and make it more rudimentary by using an elastic band to contract and expand the length of the little creature.
Following my first sketches, I tried to create a tubular device made out of wooden plates connected to one another with a rubber band and moved by servos. After some minutes, the servos were put aside and I went for a slower but stronger motor.
Before starting to use any electronics, I built the structure of the worm to see if the system working in my mind would work in reality too. The idea had (of course) some issues and I changed some of its components. The last wheel, which would be kicked by the motor in order to make it move and apply some pressure on the wheels in front of it, needed to had at least one cut to improve the movement. While the wheels in the middle needed some more friction, for the first one it was needed some material to stop it from sliding while the rest were contracting.