Thursday 27 January 2011

The Right Cupsize

The spherical treadmill has given me a bit of a headache from the start. To have the styrfoam ball sitting comfortably on an aircushion, robust enough to move smoothly even when there is a mouse on top turns out to be more challenging than I thought. A key problem is that the cup needs to be of exactly the right size, and ordering such a piece custom made is expensive business. I could 3D-print one (£ ~800 excl. VAT) or cast one (even more expensive). In times of financial crisis and budget cuts for research I can't possibly spend that much money if not absolutely necessary.

Because handcrafting is fun and reminds me of my primary school days, I've decided to try papier mache. Not just any papier mache, but a recipe I found here: (Hard Mache). Doing that I realised one thing: back in primary school, papier mache was always very messy, but I thought that was because I 'm young and didn't have the coordination. Now I'm old(er) and it's still messy business. If you are a primary school kid reading this and crying yourself to sleep every night because you got papier mache on your favourite jumper, know this: it will always be messy, don't put yourself down, you're great.

Here are some pictures of the 3-d model I made. Frankly, the papier mache part will look very different, but this model could be used for 3d-printing or any other service (these models have been done with Autodesk Inventor 2011, under an educational license. I'm happy to send them to anyone interested as long as it is only for non-commercial purposes).

No comments:

Post a Comment