Introduction: 123D Design Fully Articulated Battle Robot Action Figure

About: I'm Mario Caicedo Langer (M.C. for short), a Colombian STEAM educator living in Azerbaijan, BSc in Naval Sciences, Master in Toy Design, and former Navy officer. I am a CAD and 3D Printing enthusiast and an ar…
Officially, this was my final project , the piece de resistance of my time as Artist in Residence on Instructables.

(Piece de resistance... I always wanted to say that!)

Ladies and Gentlemen: I give you my fully articulated battle robot action figure, with dual missile launcher!

I named it "Jaeger", because I love so much the "Pacific Rim" movie.

I wanted to combine all the concepts of those awesome months. Toys, robots, missile launchers, 123D Design, 3D printing, and, curiously, reuse and recycle. Yes, recycle. Because I recycled a previous design (my Artic C.A.T. Tank), for creating a whole new project!

You will see how I transformed triggers into fingers, wheels into joints, a tank's body into a robot's body. How I applied everything I learned about 123D Design and 3D printing.

If you want to see it working, please click in this link, or you can see the Jaeger shooting its missiles in this video:

Click here to see the design on the 123D site.

Step 1: The Tank

I started opening the Artic C.A.T. file on 123D Design. The wheels and the launcher worked pretty well, and I solved a failure with the launcher's joint. So I will reuse those designs for the Jaeger's articulations.

Step 2: Recycle!

I raised the tank and turned it 90 degrees, for start shaping the Jaeger's body.

Using negative extruding, I cut the useful parts (the wheels with their axis, the launcher). I took the launcher apart, and I start placing the wheels (articulations) in shoulders and crotch.

I cut the tank in half, so I could start using Mirror Pattern.

Step 3: Legs

Copying the articulation from the shoulder (wheel), I made the knee and the ankle. Then I joined the wheels from the hip and the knee, using a primitive box. I used other boxes for making the leg and the feet.

Step 4: Shoulder

I copied the launcher and I combined it with the shoulder's wheel. Then. I cut the barrel and I left the articulation. I will fix the arm to that articulation.

Step 5: Arm

I copied the leg for making the arm. I just reduced the size (with "scale"), rotated the arm and removed the ankle's articulation. Then, I attached it to the shoulder's articulation.

Step 6: Wrist

I copied the shoulder axis and then I inserted it on the wrist area.

Step 7: Fingers

The hand is fully articulated. For the fingers, I used two basic parts from the launcher: the articulation and the trigger. I duplicated those parts until I formed three fingers and a thumb.

Step 8: Hand

Using a primitive box, I joined the finger articulations into a single hand. Then, I attached the hand to the wrist axis.

Step 9: Correcting Details

I used for a moment the Mirror Pattern, for seeing how was the robot. Then I realized the shoulder would work better if I inverted the articulation.

Step 10: Chest

For the chest, I used a hollow truncated cylinder.

Step 11: Shoulder Pads, Hips, Knee Pads and Feet

For the shoulder pad, I used a half sphere.

For the hips, I copied the chest piece and reduced it. Then I modified it for a correct thigh articulation.

For the kneepad and the foot, I used again the trigger piece.

Step 12: Head

For the head, I used a modified half sphere. Then I used negatively extruded primitive boxes for making the eyes.

(Yes, I know: It looks like the love child of Juggernaut and an enemy Horde Trooper from She-Ra. But I love it that way!)

Time to work with the whole robot. Mirror Pattern for good!

Step 13: Weapons System

I installed two launchers over the shoulders and some sweet battleship turrets (from the 123D Design Online Kits) on each arm.

At the end, I marked my toy in one of the soles.

Step 14: 3D Printing

I used the Objet Connex 500 for printing.

First, I printed a prototype on VeroClear, on scale 0.5 from the original size. The material allowed me to see where still remained support material after cleaning and how well worked the articulations. The prototype didn't survive the cleaning process on the water stream. But I learned I needed to strengthen the hips articulations and modify the fingers. Besides, Veroclear is a very breakable material in that scale.

Then, I printed a second Jaeger on VeroWhite, on scale 0.8. It works much better and survived the cleaning! It was the prototype I showed on my Final Luncheon. Problems: It's too heavy, the articulations are very loose (you can make an awesome marionette), and VeroWhite is still very breakable. I armed the launchers on the same way of the Artic C.A.T., using springs and bolts. I made some missiles with an option I discovered on the Objet Studio: layers of VeroWhite with air!

At the end, I found the best 3D printing was with ABS, starting from a 0.6 scale.