For an school assigment , we made our own disco ball. It may not look very beautifull, but everything works, and if you spend some more time on it than we did, you can make an even better version! This were the steps we had to take to make our disco ball:
Step 1: The Ball
For our disco ball we used a 3D printer to print the ball.
For the ball we used a SkechtUp model, wich we cutted in half. The 3D printerisn't able to print a whole ball, only a half ball is possible, so we printed the model you can see in the picture two times. Later on we glued them together.
We imported the model to Cura, a program where you can make models for the 3D printer. Make sure to look at the layers from wich de ball is constructed, sometimes the program fills the whole model, but you don't need a massive ball. It also takes much longer to print a model when it's totally filled.
When our two half disco balls where finally printed, we coverd them in pieces of CD's. We cutted te CD's with scissors, but you can also cut them with a knive. It will take mutch longer, but you can cut the CD pieces in a better shape. .
We sticked the pieces to the ball with a glue gun, to make sure the pieces wouldn't fall off really fast. We also glued the two half balls together with te glue gun.
As you can see in the picture, our balls are open at the top. It's a fault from the 3D printer, but it didn't really matter. It was even useful, because now the ball can easly stand on itself.
Step 2: The Spinning Mechanism
The more challenging part from our project was letting the ball spin. We already had a motor with a kind of gear wheel, so we used that as a beginnnig.
We measured the sizes of the gear wheel and made a sketchup model for something that would fit the gear wheel, based on the sizes.
We also imported this model to Cura, and printed it.
The mechanism had to be placed on a plate. We made this plate with a laser cutter, for this we used the program Inkscape.
We placed the 3D printed mechanim on the plate and glued it with the glue gun. We were really happy to see that it fitted on the gear wheel, as you can see in the picture. Also you can see a sneak peek from how it's going to look when the motor spins in the video.
Step 3: Get It All Together
To make it all work, we taped all the parts on a wooden board. You can see one of the wheels (we used two, besides the motor) in the picture. They all have to be as high as the others, otherwise the plate wont spin perfectly. It all doesn't look really beautiful, but it works.
Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed!