Introduction: Theo Jansens Strandbeest Wind Up Motor Mod

Picture of Theo Jansens Strandbeest Wind Up Motor Mod

Still awaiting my 3D printer but admiring Theo Jansen's work and really craving to examine the inner workings of one of these little Strandbeest's I forced myself to fork out and buy a lovely injection molded model (they can be found here)
Not being content with having to blow the confounded but very efficient small fan and almost give myself hyperventilation each time I wanted to see it move I thought to try and tack a little wind up motor onto the side.

Step 1:

Picture of

Gather hackable parts and materials.

Step 2:

Picture of

Take the case off of your wind up toy.

Step 3:

Picture of

Sometimes they use a locktite substance to seal the screws, because they are children's toys to avoid them coming apart and becoming a choking hazard. The grip on these little screw drivers can be hard to get purchase on so i grip them with a wireless drill but a pair of pliers can also be used.

Step 4:

Picture of

Take all outside fixtures off the motor, admire the mechanism. This ladybird aswell as the wheels propelling it along did back flips. I took the bottom drive shaft out as it was not needed however it turned out it has a job inside, applying pressuring to one of the cogs and the engine will not work properly without it.
Keep other bits in a jar for future projects.

Step 5:

Picture of

Find cog that fits and shave lip on washer that is already on the drive shaft.

Step 6:

Picture of

Measure the top bar of the Strandbeest and drill the same sized hole in the already pilot hole, furthest away from the winder as seen here on the far left.

Step 7:

Picture of

Check that its a good fit.

Step 8:

Picture of

Find a thin piece of string that fits through the hole furthest away from the previously drilled one, I use kite string.

Step 9:

Picture of

Measure the string too short to reach the bottom metal rod support and attach a little bit of elastic band to provide tension.

Super glue the cog down to the drive shaft, I use a araldite. Leave for 24 hours. Make sure the cog runs absolutely parallel to the motor body.

Step 10:

Picture of

Wind it up and enjoy your Stranbeest indoors as well as out in the big bad world!


vladooo (author)2013-02-23

very nice project !
I just printed this : and would like to mod it the same way you did. I'm not sure I understand your last step with the piece of string and the elastic band though. Why did you add that ?

Lumo the Maker (author)vladooo2013-02-28

The elastic band and string were added to provide the tension to keep the cogs sitting against eachother.

rimar2000 (author)2013-01-20

A video?

Lumo the Maker (author)rimar20002013-01-20

the canon 450 d we have in the house only takes photos

About This Instructable




More by Lumo the Maker:Gopro K'nex Steady CamFoldable Phantom 2 Drone Leg ModIndigo Dyeing: Shibori
Add instructable to: