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research-article

A 3D Printed, Non-Assembly, Passive Dynamic Walking Toy: Design and Analysis

[+] Author and Article Information
Christian Trevino

Robotics and Motion Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Texas at San Antonio, One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249, USA
christiantrevino@hotmail.com

Joseph Galloway

Robotics and Motion Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Texas at San Antonio, One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249, USA
arr466@my.utsa.edu

Pranav Bhounsule

Robotics and Motion Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Texas at San Antonio, One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249, USA
pranav.bhounsule@utsa.edu

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4040634 History: Received July 16, 2017; Revised June 06, 2018

Abstract

We present the redesign and analysis of a century old walking toy. Historically, the toy is made up of two wooden pieces including a rear leg and a front leg and body (as a single piece) that are attached to each other by means of a hinge. When the toy is placed on a ramp and given a slight perturbation, it ambles downhill powered only by gravity. The toy needs careful tuning of its geometry and mass distribution. The traditional technique of manual wood carving offers very limited flexibility to tune the mass distribution and geometry. We have re-engineered the toy to be 3D printed as a single integrated assembly that includes a pin joint and the two legs. We have to manually break-off the weakly held support material to allow movement of the pin joint. It took us 6 iterations to progressively tune the leg geometry, mass distribution, and hinge joint tolerances to create our most successful working prototype. The final 3D printed toy needs minimal post-processing and walks reliably on a 7.87 degree downhill ramp. We created a computer model of the toy to explain its motion and stability. Parameter studies reveal that the toy exhibits stable walking motion for a fairly wide range of mass distributions. Although 3D printing has been used to create non-assembly articulated kinematic mechanisms, this is the first study that shows that it is possible to create dynamics-based mechanisms such as walking toys. https://youtu.be/wJ3W3MomWl4

Copyright (c) 2018 by ASME
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