Picture of K'nex Strandbeest
A motor powered Strandbeest made from K'nex!

Strandbeests, which means "beach beasts," are a type of kinetic sculpture made by Theo Jansen. These sculptures are able to walk with only wind power. After designing the walkers with a special algorithm, he races them on the beach to measure their fitness and incorporates the best traits to modify improve the design. The designs grow more complex over time, and have artificial stomachs, obstacle detection and other features. This video should give you an overview.

Here is a video of my Strandbeest. It has terrible traction on concrete, and the motor is a bit underpowered.

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Step 1: Gather Pieces

- 12 white
- 60 yellow
- 12 red
- 10 orange
- 80 grey

End Connectors
- 20 tan lock

- 3 black
- 36 red
- 72 yellow
- 30 blue
- 20 green

Motors and Wheels
- 1 trekker motor

Step 2: Design

Picture of Design
K'nex was a limitation in the design, as the rod lengths only came in certain lengths. Creating intermediate lengths with rods and connectors would weaken the structure and increase weight. The lengths used here can be modified, but the K'nex motors will probably be too weak to power anything larger. Also the joints were not entire pieces, so the ends would twist a great deal, requiring a heavy double-layer design.

Keep in mind that this is a very very basic design. It does not have numerous legs, so the movement is very unstable. More legs can be added by simply attaching legs at different points along the central axle.

Step 3: Build Basic Structures

Picture of Build Basic Structures
Build these basic structures of the leg.

Step 4: Build a Leg

Picture of Build a Leg
Combine the elements from the previous step. Note the different layers the pieces are on in the third image.

Step 5: Build Second Half of Leg

Picture of Build Second Half of Leg
Build and complete the legs. Note which layer each component is on.

Step 6: Build the Truss

Built the truss and attach components.

Step 7: Build the Opposite Side

Picture of Build the Opposite Side
The Strandbeest is symmetrical, so now build the other side, but reflect the layering of your pieces.
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ninjalim10 months ago

does it have to be a treker moteor

Kred141 year ago
adding more legs will help with the moon-walking, increasing the friction between the feet and the floor/ground
danielhone92 years ago
on the video it looks like its doing the moonwalk
freeza363 years ago
theo jansens dont have motors though
This is cool, this is the next thing I was going to attempt after I took apart my K'nex clock.
aashilrv4 years ago
LOL It almost looks like a moon walk.
Franky145 years ago
what are the 3 black rods
the strengthened black rods are used to connect the to pairs of leg he used in the strandbeast, if you dont have any, use the grey/orange long knex rods
snow clones5 years ago
You are insanely smart, and this thing is truly "beest"!
eyebot1175 years ago
Such fascinating examples of kinetic art! Can they be ridden like a bicycle and steered? Could they hold my weight? GAH! I have to find out more! =P
 Try with pvc pipe.
Here is a template i made for the strandbeest designs 
Strandbeests Leg.png
The walking mechanism you are using is called a ''Clan Linkage''
Actually, a Klann Linkage seems to be pretty different from the linkage used in Jansen's Strandbeests. Here is a comparison: http://www.mechanicalspider.com/comparison.html
i made a six-legged strandbeest. it walks perfectly in a straight line, i will try to get a picture or a vid on youtube.
Same as Oompa-Loompa. I am definitely making one of these. (I just need a motor first) I have thousands of pieces, but no motors. Very sad.
oompa loompa WAS smart, now he is just average.
I got my motors from roller coaster sets, they have lots of rods and a motor. Just make sure it isn't a plug in model if you are going for something mobile
riku16 years ago
what motor is that the 12v one??????? i only have the motor below.
It's 6 volt with 4 AA batteries. I have one. Double as powerful and has two speeds.
riku16 years ago
add more detailed instructions plz and if possable state substitution pieces
where can i get that motor
Idk if its still sold its like a treckor or something
all terrain trekker and no it is not sold anymore but you can get it at amazon or something like that
ok =)
you have made the crank move the wrong way to the legs.
smilee6 years ago
can you use a different motor???
It's an interesting creation and can be improved. I wan't to buid such a thing on my on and thank you for informations.
crestind, Are you Dutch? 'Cause I am.
stale566 years ago
this guy i smart, he knows what hes talking about
grevious6 years ago
ummm... i looked at the video and now im confused, ar these things actually real...?
crestind (author)  grevious6 years ago
What do you mean?
is a strandbeast a real thing? or is not?
WoD5 grevious6 years ago
these are very real but there not alive they simpley have a bunch of simple sensors like tubes kenected to botles, to sence the water, and a BIOS (basic imput output) toproseses left and right or 1s and 0s. but i could understand your disbelief. there quite amazing machines.
grevious WoD56 years ago
wow they do seem very simple for there functions, ill have to look deeper into these...
Srry for double comment, can I make one of these move with a wind up?
crestind (author)  Your Average Guy6 years ago
It won't work. They're nowhere near powerful enough.
what about with three wind up motors?
crestind (author)  Your Average Guy6 years ago
They'll start off strong and lose power very quickly, so you'll probably only get one revolution or so. It needs continuous power.
Ok thanks, yeah i just figured that out.
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