Instructables

Elastic power car

Picture of Elastic power car
In this instructable we create an elastic (rubber band) powered car from scrap material. The car uses a few important physics principles to travel and also teaches skill to use the all important GLUE GUN!  There is a lot of variations of elastic powered "cars" and this variation adds a little elegance to the bunch. This one also does not get your fingers caught in a mouse (or rat) trap. I have built three versions to date, all using different chasis and this one, although not the fastest, is the one that travels the longest distance.
 
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Step 1: Materials and tools

Picture of Materials and tools
tools.JPG
Look at the pic and improvise..  This is a very flexible piece of work that can be modified as you go along. Ignore the soldering iron in the tool picture, it was taken from another instructable.

Main ingredients:
Plastic drinking straws
Bamboo/wooded skewers
Small (25ml) plastic containers
Old/used optical media for wheels
Other plastic caps for wheels (Size does not matter!)
Epoxy glue
Glue-gun glue
Paper clips
Elastic band
Cotton yarn
Paint (optional)

Step 2: Rear shaft and lever assembly

Picture of Rear shaft and lever assembly
Use three wooden skewers (one cut short) and make a cross as shown in the picture. Stick everything together with epoxy putty. There are other ways to do this, but I found this the easiest and fastest way.

Step 3: Drive preparation

Picture of Drive preparation
plastic cups with nothces 2.JPG
I melted notches and holes into the plastic cups I selected with a hot nail.

Step 4: Complete the drive

Picture of Complete the drive
Use your glue gun to attach the plastics cups (or whatever you chose) to the rear-axle cross assembly.

Step 5: Build the chassis

Picture of Build the chassis
front axle bearing detail.JPG
Look at the pictures and use your glue gun to assemble the chassis as shown. I have not added any dimensions to this design. Figure it out as you go along.

Step 6: Attach drive assembly to chassis

Picture of Attach drive assembly to chassis
The drive assembly which will help add stretch to the rubber band is attached to the rear wheels. The drive assebly which is fixed to the rear axel should allow the wheels attached to also rotate freely.
s.maria1 year ago
Oh. So the axel remains stationary but the wheels move freely for the front wheels and for the back wheels the axel rotates but the wheels stay put?
s.maria1 year ago
This step is a bit confusing. What did you use for the drive wheel? It does not look like CD's. Also, where do we attach the wheel. Is it to the end of the cross we had attached on to the chassis? If you could clarify this, that would be greatly appreciated!
Dr KAZ (author)  s.maria1 year ago
The pic shows plastic wheels on the drive assembly (the cross). They must be able to rotate freely. I glued a small nut on either side of wheels. The CDs go onto the other axle.
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