It was not our intention to enter Techno Games, but we were persuded to enter, the recording was to be in December and so there is only a short time to come up with some thing. We decided to build a novel battery powered walker called Rita Rocks. We also decide that we could modify Miss Struts for the Internal Combustion driven sprint.
Miss Struts gets new legs
Miss Struts is not the fastest of walking machines but very reliable, so to improve her speed we lengthened her legs by about 20cm. We could of made them longer but we would of haved to of rebuilt her trolly, this was not practicle in the time avliable. To extend the legs we replaced extrusion that is the inner part of the leg. This is not a trival task as it meant rebuilding the legs and their up and down sensors. The results were actually well worth the effort as Miss Struts walking actual improved, the three feet on the ground walking stratagy was much better and steering by adjusting the leg lengths was much improved. There is also an improvement in speed but it is totally insignificant.
Rita Rocks is not a complicated machine and is based on a small toy, a penguin which would rock its self down a gentle slope. It has one foot the other been the body both inline with the direction of walking. It took a bit of time working out how we could replace the slope of the toy to get Rita Rocks to walk on the flat but eventually we came up with the rotating weights on arms. An EMail to Roger Plant (Wheely Big Cheese) and we had a motor and gear box orginised, which we picked up at the Children in Need event in Plymouth.
Because we were not confident of some of the design paramaters we made the piviot point for the foot adjustable. Two weeks later and couple of bits of MDF board and some M12 studding Rita Rocks is built and running. We did not need to adjust the piviot point of the foot but did have to add an extra battery as ballest. She rocks and walks really quite well but controlling the speed of the rotaing weights is very critical. Too slow and she does not step, too fast and she falls flat on her face. Steff has also been very busy and we now have some very grand cloaks. Steff has also come up with a design for Rita's paint work and has finished painting her.
Rita Rocks and Miss Struts goes to Techno Games