Let's Make Robots!

Transforming robot wheel

transforms from smooth to spiky for on-road and off-road use

One of the grad students in the lab I work at built a transforming wheel for a design project.  To actuate, it had to be twisted from the side opposite the driving motor, and it involved dozens of joints as well as 4 friction-heavy sliding pins.  The idea never ended up being fully realized. 

I had some down time yesterday- so decided to take a crack at the transforming-wheel concept and 3D print my own design.  My design uses 2 different contact surfaces, one for off-road, one for on-road.  It basically swings open like an apple cut into 6 pieces.

Sometimes a smooth wheel surface is best when encoders are needed and the terrain is flat, other times you want something large and manly for getting over obstacles.  Insert “why not both” meme here… 

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Very clever! I love seeing what smart people cook up with 3D printers!

clever! Reminds me of Flora's head. It works in a simillar way too.

whats that?

That's a previous robot I made. 

http://letsmakerobots.com/node/37002

The petal opening mechanism works in a simillar fashion. While this is dedicated to wheels, mine was dedicated to those petals.

Clever design! I can see future Mars rovers using wheels like this.

Nifty, sir.