BB-8 Builder Scales Up Classic Lego Go-Kart to Make a 3D Printed Version That’s Five Times Bigger
Matt Denton, who has a YouTube channel called Mantis Hacks, co-created the terrifyingly huge Mantis walking robot, and is one of the original builders of BB-8, the roly-poly orange and white droid from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Denton is also a fan of LEGOs and recently created his own giant LEGO project.He was inspired by the scaled-up LEGO built by designer and XRobots majordomo James Bruton, whose 3D printed projects we’ve admired before. Both Bruton and Denton visited with the LulzBot team at the recent TCT Show, as technology from the company is behind many of their creations and they enjoyed the opportunity to talk with visitors about what 3D printing can make possible.
Denton’s original plan was to create a 3D printed go-kart that his 8-year-old nephew would be able to fit in, but he realized that it would take far too long; in addition, he needed to make sure that whatever he built would be able to fit on the build plate of his Lulzbot TAZ 5 3D printer.
Whatever Denton made, it would have to be at least a little economical in terms of print time and plastic, and he found the perfect project to scale up in a classic 1985 model – the LEGO Technic Go-Kart set #1972, which has 98 pieces.
To determine how much larger his version would be, he found the largest piece in the kit, which is a blue plate, and kept sizing it up until it just barely fit diagonally on the 11″ x 11″ 3D printer bed. The 3D printed LEGO go-kart is five times the size of the original – so while his nephew can’t quite fit on it, a toddler probably could.
Denton spent seven days – a total of 168 hours – 3D printing each of the 98 parts, some of which, according to Hackaday, had to be printed in series of smaller pieces. He used a total of 5 kg of filament, using mostly 20% infill for the parts, and all of the parts were 3D printed, with no bridging or supports, using ABS material.
In his YouTube video, Denton said, “I like working with ABS because of its…it’s just great stuff to work with, when you can bond it again with acetone and what have you and glue it back together and repair it. It’s just my material of choice.”
He did acknowledge that ABS can cause issues with warping, and said that the corners of the longer, flat pieces had a tendency to curl up at the edges. The 3D printed LEGO Go-Kart weighs about 12 lbs, and cost him about $103-$128 to make. The car works just like a real LEGO kit would – it can be assembled, disassembled, and reassembled without any glue.
According to Popular Mechanics, “The result works like real Lego, with parts that fit together without adhesive. The pinion steering is functional, as are the Ninjaflex wheels.”
The only components of the project that aren’t LEGO are threaded rods that go down the middle of the cross axles, and the Neoprene hosing. Denton attended Maker Faire Hannover in August, and got to show off his 3D printed LEGO project.
The most fun part of the whole project, at least in my opinion, was when Denton challenged Ruben, the nephew he wanted to build the go-kart for in the first place, to a LEGO building race. He gave Ruben the original Technic Go-Kart set, dumped all of his giant 3D printed LEGO parts on the table next to him, and the two went to work piecing together both the little go-kart and the big go-kart.
To see who won, take a look at the short video below!
Discuss this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com, or share your thoughts in the Facebook comments below.[Images via Mantis Hacks YouTube]
You May Also Like
Markforged Demonstrating its Blacksmith AI
Accuracy in Additive Manufacturing (AM), from the CAD design to the printing process, is not always easy to deliver. Companies are working hard at trying to ensure consistency and repeatability...
3D Printing News Briefs: August 7, 2019
We’re taking care of business first today in 3D Printing News Briefs – VELO3D has announced its largest 3D printer order yet, and 3D Systems is partnering with Thor3D for...
The Do’s and Don’ts of Additive Manufacturing
The best-use cases for 3D printing aren’t always obvious. When designing an object for additive manufacturing, it’s important to keep the limits and benefits of the process in mind. These...
3D Systems: Augmenting Your Workflow with Traditional and Additive Manufacturing
Combining Old and New Technology Remember the days when people thought that we would all end up with our own home desktop 3D printers to make anything our hearts desired...
View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.