When I started designing my final project, I thought I was going to be making a game. I wanted to design an apparatus that launched ping pong balls accurately into cups, making my robot into a game of sorts. When deciding how to launch ping pong balls, I decided I wanted to use a stomp pad. I had catapult options and spring loading options, but I was really adamant about using air instead.
I decided the best thing to make would be a Lego tower with a chute on one side and a pulley and weight system on the other; the weight would be drawn up and dropped on the stomp pad, and a ball would fly out of the chute…simple right?
Immediately I ran
into problems. Lifting and dropping a 1Kg
mass using nothing but string and Legos turned out to
be a bit more difficult than expected.
Next thing I knew, I had spent days on just the mechanical aspect of the
structure and concluded that an accurate, aimable cup
game would be nearly impossible to make in time, so I opted for a slightly
similar, yet just as entertaining, project:
a kinetic sculpture of a NASA shuttle launch.