I’ve completed the build of my Wall-e about 5-6 years ago and had the desire to do some upgrades awhile now. Since last year I’ve really come to grips with 3d printing printing minor parts for R2 and other smaller projects but now have been giving Wall-e an “extreme makeover”. All the major parts of my Wall-e needed some TLC. So since June until September I’ve been letting my printers run 24/7 printing new CAD designed and fabricated parts in the hundreds. Specifically, the new treads are the biggest change. My original treads were made of foam rubber which I weren’t the best solution as they gripped the ground too well, waering out both the motors and motor controllers. These new ones glide a lot better and still have good traction where needed. The short list of new parts is:
- Totally new neck and connectors
- Completely printed head and eyes
- 70 new treads 40% solid PLA
- new conveyor belt gears of 75% solid PLA
- new BnL hubcaps all around
- 2 new arms including shoulder hub / pulleys
Next year the Wall-e film is 10 years old and I thought I’d have him in prime condition for the coming year of scheduled and surprise events (more to follow). So here are a few pictures of newly fabricated parts.
Today I was invited to the local public library that had a themed weekend about recycling. Of course my Wall-e is the perfect symbol (ambassador) for recycling. It was more of a meet and greet day, get the chance to selfies with Wall-e and learn a little bit about the importance of recycling. The public wasn’t as large as typical visits I’ve done in the past but was still a lot of fun a it was for a good cause. The library also offered to donate some funds to my charity of choice which is a double bonus. I didn’t get a chance to take many pictures of the visitors interacting with my Wall-e but here’s a few, enjoy 🙂
I’ve had to take a little break with working on wall-e because life had gotten in the way as well as my other R2 need immediate attend, tweaks and fixes. Over the past month I’ve re-design and built my Wall-E treads. My original gear design was never working properly so I built s all aluminum design which works (I dare say) perfectly.
Well, it’s 12 days left until my first Wall-E appearance EVER. We will be at this years annual HobbyMässan (Hobby Expo) in Stockholm. Its the biggest hobby event of the year and after almost 2 years of designing, building, re-designing and more building. Its finally time to show him off. The hardest part was designing the treads so that they not only look screen accurate but even roll. I can say this much without going onto too much detail that it may look simple and easy but its ALL built from scratch, EVERY single detail. When I built the R2’s many of the smaller details you can get from private makers here and there. Anyway, all I have left to do is finish the arms, finish up the eyes/head, install all the linear actuators and finally tidy up the electronics. Here’s the latest picture for those that are curious:
oh and by the way…I haven’t even announced to the organizers yet that I’m even bringing him so it should be fun to see everyones reaction.
I’ve been busy working in the “real world” yes but during my in-between time I’ve finally got around to working on the treads. I used hinged conveyor belts and hand carved foam rubber. Other Wall-E builders are using a kind of pored resin rubber and other are using resin which looks great but I wanted to try a little different approach because of weight issues. Solid rubber is very heavy and Wall-E has between 64 and 66 individual treads. The foam rubber I’ve found seems strong enough to withstand events and still only weigh a 3rd of solid rubber. Its a test and only time will tell if it was the way to go. Here’s the production process in pictures: