A distraction from linkages has taken a more pronounced role recently in how spare time is spent.
Developing an inertial thrust mechanism has been a background head game since I first heard of the idea. The Dean Drive was written up in Popular Science Magazine back in 1958. Dr. Laithwaite and many others continue to explore methods that exert a force on an object without expelling mass, like a rocket, or using friction with the ground, water, or air.
Don’t know if I buy off on the amendment to Newton’s Third Law – called “the phasing phenomenon.” Probably because nobody wants to be categorized as some of the believers are.
Sketches of details for a unique inertial thrust mechanism have been done over the past several weeks and CAD drawings started. Parts will be fabricated shortly. This is incredibly exciting stuff.
April 5, 2010
The Spider episode of “Motor City Motors” airs on the Discovery channel. That’s pretty cool. Thanks to Dave Kwiatkowski and Jeff Maxwell for sending a few pictures.
July 28, 2009
Muhammad Mohsin and Ahad Ahmed Satti from the Mechanical Engineering Depatment at the National University of Sciences and Technology, Pakisatn display their Mechanical Spider.
May 28, 2009
www.steamspider.com goes live.
March 20, 2009
Dave Wilson of Motorized Couch .com is working on a walking pedal-powered version called the Novoped with plans on taking it to Burning Man. The spreadsheet was redone to incorporate 3 legs at a 120-degree phase shift for his machine.
Modifying a spreadsheet that calculates all the pivot points from 6 input variables, all their positions for each 10 degree rotation of the crank, graphs the coupler curves for each joint, displays the linearity, step height, and deviation of the foot path was an interesting challenge and involved a significant number of trig functions. It includes a macro that animates the motion of all three legs through several cycles. And some people say I don’t have any fun in my spare time…
Plans are underway for the Steam Spider II to make a very small production run. A break-even learning experience is hoped for.
A student project in the Mechanical Engineering Department, National University Of Sciences And Technology, Pakistan may incorporate the mechanicalspider mechanism.
b0tman did a respectable job of George the Spider at Incredibots. Left and right arrow keys make him walk. The down arrow makes him attack and eat the natives along with pots of monkey flesh.
December 7, 2008
A few video links have been added to the extras page of Mondo Spider and the Walking beast.
A link was added to the Diamonda site. The video on the site is a five-minute tour of the indoor amusement park. Multiple parks in various countries are planned. The Garden Spider Ride is just a very small piece and there are a few glitches with the spider animation. The actual vehicles have not been designed yet but it should be very interesting.
Added a comparison page to show some of the differences between two linkages that are often confused and miscredited. It is becoming more evident how the phrase “mad scientist” came into existence. I don’t expect it to change anything but I feel better…
Seyhan Ersoy did a nice flash animation of the mechanical spider linkage at Mechanisms101. He is a great guy to work with.
Crystal Proteins is getting close to having a 3D image of the Steam Spider II laser etched in glass. The 3D file looks really slick. Love the detail, right down to the bolts on the bezel around the glass window on the boiler.
A Vocational school in Virginia may use files from the Steam Spider II as part of a CNC machining exercise in one of their classes. Another school project in Croatia may be using the linkage as well. That’s kind of cool.
A few other rejections have happened since the last update.
A little remote-controlled spider tank was put on hold for a short period but will continue shortly. Machined the molds and injection-molded the first set of legs. 4 of the links for a leg are a single piece of polypropylene with living hinges.
Posted the initial design goals for the Matrix 1.0. Yeah, I know, someone got carried away.
Miura created the Auriga Spider and posted a few pictures on the Rigs Of Rods forum. Nice job and thanks for both giving credit and permission to use your pictures. Rigs of Rods is a physics-based simulator developed by Pierre-Michel Ricordel that allows users to build their vehicles as networks of interconnected nodes giving it a realistic behavior in an open environment.
August 12, 2007
A delightful photo of the MondoSpider, much better than the white lab coats...
Moltensteelman has sent a few amazing pictures. Must see to believe.
Fell a little behind on my stuff. Lost my job when the factory shut down and currently helping to start up a new one. Some of the parts are on hand for three different spider projects. An Electric Steam Spider II, A small one with a Parallax stamp and a few sensors for a company in Thailand, and a mid-size that will be large enough to climb stairs and outrun a human.
December 12, 2006
Steam Spider II turned over to Crabfu.
October 29, 2006
Steam Spider II status. Just a few bugs left to work out but should be walking very soon.
August 20, 2006
The mad scientists of the MondoSpider Project.
Initial design work complete on the Steam Spider II.
June 25, 2006
Wilesco D14 steam engine arrives.
May 28, 2006
A pair of spiders… one by Alpha Romeo. The Steam Spider ships out tomorrow.
May 4, 2006
The plastic version of the steel steam-powered spider is getting close.
March 24, 2006
Crabfu is getting famous with all his steam-powered straight up "badass-ness"....
February 26, 2006
Tooling paths on the T2 and initial design work on the steam spider filled most of the available time in February.
January 20, 2006
Molds for several versions of the legs and two levels of flexible rubber were tested before settling on machining them out of polypropylene.
January 1, 2006
Crabfu makes contact and puts a new twist on things...
December 27, 2005
Leigh sent this update of his project. It looks like he's got the machine walking around on it's own eight feet.
December 13, 2005
Moltensteelman is making progress on his walking beast. The motor, transmission, and differential are installed. The frame is pictured at the completed height above the floor. It is awe inspiring to imagine this thing with legs walking around and is going to make a huge impression, most likely lots of them depending on the size of the feet…
December 02, 2005
The second attempt at the rubber legs was very promising. Stiffer material is being ordered and the third set of molds are in progress.
November 30, 2005
Moltensteelman sent a picture and an update of his Walking Beast. Here are a few specs that he’s passed along: 454 Chevy engine, 41-inch step height, 9,500 pounds, 1 3/4" 4140 chromemolly solid stock pivots, 2 1/2 ton rockwell differential with a planned completion in late spring. Not to worry, he has assured me that he doesn’t plan on stepping on anyone…
November 18, 2005
Leigh sent this picture of his initial walking machine using the six-bar linkage. His team is working on the next generation for the 2006 burning man competition.
First attempt at a rubber leg is completed. The flexibility of the material is greater than expected and will force a redesign or the use of a more rigid substance.
Materials and components have been ordered or are on hand for the T2. Preliminary design work finished on the Assault Spider. Controller, Radio, and motors have not been locked in yet.
October 7, 2005
The T1 model was mailed to an RC toy company for consideration on October 7. An email out of the blue can be very motivating and moved up the schedule on the Assault Spider.
September 5, 2005
All parts are assembled on the T1 except the stepper gears. Crank successfully injection molded with nylon gear insert.
Machinist completes the fixtures and programs for the legs of the T1 spider for pending limited prototype run.
CNC programs have been generated for all four pieces of the T1 spider's frame. The T1 will be symmetrical front to back and side to side.
A progress report was emailed by Moltensteelman, who is interested in building his own version of the mechanical spider. He has just completed the design work and it sounds impressive. The walking beast will weigh in at around 9,500 pounds with a 41-inch step height and powered by a 454 Chevy engine.
October 26, 2004
First mold is completed and injected. The connecting arm for the T1 Spider.
A Dake injection molder is purchased through Ebay for small parts and gears. It is old and in tough shape but functional.
May 18, 2004
"The Big Ant" makes contact and the realization that the mechanical spider is not alone sets in...
January 5, 2004
MaxNC CL10 is added to Klann R&D.
December 10, 2003
Construction completed on the underground R&D facility.
June 17, 2003
www.mechanicalspider.com goes live
The assault spider parts are cut.
November 12, 2002
US Patent 6,478,374 issued
April 2, 2002
US Patent 6,364,040 issued
January 14, 2002
Klann Research and Development, LLC is born as a limited-liability company and registered with the Minnesota secretary of state.
October 22, 2001
Polyspider design work is completed. The pieces are laser cut out of polycarbonate (Thanks to Brenda and her students) and assembled in layers. Check out the video clips on the PROTOTYPES page...
July 17, 2001
US Patent 6,260,862 issued
February 6, 1999
Design of the first human-powered walking machine started. It ends up being 450 pounds of welded steel, old bicycle parts, and three drive-train redesigns that functions but very inefficiently. A less aggressive step height, lighter weight, and tighter tolerances on the tube-in-tube joints would have made a big difference.
Aluminum spider started. The machining was outsourced and a huge debt is owed to Vern for helping with final assembly.
This unpowered plexiglas version was cut out on a bandsaw. Here's a little tip from your Uncle Joe: When drilling holes in small plasic parts... never hold them in place with your fingers.
Cardboard models with sewing snap joints were an excellent way to determine how accurate the theoretical results were. Quick sanity check and gives a different meaning to "looks good on paper".
Various dwell mechanisms considered to combine with four-bar straight-line linkage
July 1, 1994
Burmester center point curves decided on after other linkage synthesis methods were explored.
First log book started after numerous sketches and equations for the development of a walking linkage was inspired by a kinematics class.