Perhaps you had one as a kid, or perhaps you’ve seen them on TV commercials. Regardless of which it is, most of us who were born in the ’70s and ’80s are familiar with the Spirograph, a geometric drawing toy which is used to draw mathematical roulette curves. Developed by a British engineer named Denys Fisher, these toys began hitting the shelves of stores back in 1965. However, the original spirograph was actually invented by a mathematician named Bruno Abakanowicz sometime in the late 19th century, in order to help calculate area delimited by curves. Today, many varieties of the toy can be purchased, and now if you own a 3D printer you can simply 3D print your own.
An expert metal worker from Latvia, by the name of Valdis Torms, has come up with his own unique design for a 3D printable version of the famous Spirograph. Having been creating virtual 3D designs on his computer for years, Torms recently got his hands on a 3D printer which allowed him to bring these designs to life. So he decided he would create a 3D printed spirograph.
“I had a similar toy, when I was child,” Torms tells 3DPrint.com. “I loved it and I could play with it for hours. It was something like graphic editor in my childhood, so I made this Spirograph for my little daughter, and I hope she will love it too. “
“When I was studying, we had to calculate gear sizes using only our minds and calculators,” Torms remembers. “It wasn’t easy at all, so work with such great program as Solidworks is just a pleasure for me.”
While the design can be printed quite quickly, Torms recommends printing it at very high resolution to ensure it works correctly. This can take several hours to complete. If printed correctly, literally thousands of variations can be drawn, using the different base shapes and various pen holes on the smaller gear. Then if you have experience with Solidworks, the gears can be modified and reprinted in order to create even more variations, so the possibilities are really endless. Gears can be created in different sizes and even non-circular shapes.
Torms has made the files available to print this spirograph available for free on Thingiverse. What do you think about this cool 3D printable toy? Discuss in the 3D Printed Spirograph forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the video of this toy in action below.