Platform: SolidWorks // Laser cutter // 3D printer
At the onset of our robotics course, most of our students have no prior CAD experience. Within a few weeks, the students become proficient enough to create a virtual prototype of the motor mount shown here. We look at appropriate responses to the constraints of the design, and consider techniques to enhance the strength of the part.
The laser cut sheet was an example of designing to maximize resources. The servo mounts and chassis are designed so that that multiple instances of the mounts can be fabricated from the material left over by the wheel wells of neighboring chassis.
This project required students to respond to both practical and aesthetic constraints. Being responsible for the final appearance of the wheels encouraged them to set their own goals for executing the project.
By the conclusion of the unit, students fabricate a robotics platform that is comparable to those produced by first-year students at a local university’s engineering program. As the year progresses, we use this base configuration to explore concepts in electronics and programming.