Help (advice) with building a braiding machine? Answered
I've been working with braiding plastic shopping bag strips into rope, and by hand it's a slow and tedious process. I know that braiding machines have been around for ages, so the patent on many of them has to have elapsed. I've Google'd and Bing'd and Yahoo'd my heart out looking for how to build a simple one to no avail. The only thing that comes back is Chinese sellers of a commercial braiding machine.
All I want is something that I can build, a hand crank mechanical kind, that can braid 7-10 strands into a larger rope. It doesn't even have to go fast, in fact I'm fine with it being slow.
Can anyone provide plans for one?
Ok so I think I have plans, but now I could use some advice with how to go about fabricating the sprockets. One idea is to purchase a premade sprocket and modify it, then use it as a master for a mold to create more. I was thinking of either doing the whole dissolving styrofoam with Acetone then pouring the plastic in the mold thing, or possibly adapt the Oogoo instructable. Thoughts??
Update 2: My latest brainstorm leaves me thinking that I could use a bicycle sprocket (gear) as a master and then make a mold from it, then make duplicates from the mold. Thoughts???