In the News

Drawbot presentation slides

In April of 2012 Dan made a presentation at the Vancouver Hack Space about the Makelangelo polargraph drawbot. Dan talked about his history building machines, what he is working on, and what the future holds. Click on each image for a more detailed explanation.


Drawbot: checking out the competition

  • Drawbot: No pen up.  Not self-calibrating.  Interesting path planning (circular halftones?).  Very slow.
  • Hektor: Pen up.  Spray paint plotter.  Self calibrating.  Terrible path planning.
  • Smooth Octopus: Pen up.  Nice plotter.  Not self-calibrating.  Java path planning.
  • GarabatoBot: No pen up.  Nice plotter (motors integrated!).  Not self-calibrating.

Do you know of any others?  Please comment!


3D Printed Thrust Bearing

When two objects are moving together they can have two kinds of contact: sliding or rolling.

  • Sliding produces a lot of friction which leads to extra work, heat, wear, and damage. Sometimes this can be overcome by using two different types of materials: brass slides easily over steel, but steel doesn’t slide well over steel.
  • Rolling is smooth and (nearly) frictionless. Bearings are like wheels on a car: they turn as much sliding friction into rolling friction as possible. Did you know there are bearings inside most of your moving household appliances?

      What makes Thrust Bearings special

      Thrust bearings work like normal bearings except they can take more axial load. (force in the direction the center axis is pointing). Put two of them back to back and you get a Slew Ring, a bearing that can take a great deal of force every which way.