Radio-Controlled Infant Chariot

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Introduction: Radio-Controlled Infant Chariot

This Instructable describes materials needed and assembly method of the above Radio-Controlled (RC) Infant Chariot, or something similar. The approximate weight of the infant in the above photo was 5-6kg.

Step 1: Gather/prepare Materials and Tools

Materials to construct the above RC Infant Chariot, or something similar, are:

1) A baby bouncer. The above example has an adjustable reclining angle. However, you can use use other brands/models, e.g. IKEA's

2) A "dolly". The above example required halving one of the dolly's steel bars to make two shorter sides, which matched the bouncer's base frame.

Where possible, choose a dolly that has all wheels swivelable. If the tow link is rigid enough, swivelling rear wheels allow the chariot to match the RC vehicle's turning circle. If you are good at woodwork, you could make your own dolly

3) RC vehicle with sufficient, smooth towing power and reversing capability. The above example is fitted with an electronic speed-control and motor and set to "RC Crawler mode", i.e. good for low speed towing.

For heavier infants (e.g. above 6kg), a 4WD vehicle is recommended for better traction

4) A shelf bracket cut to two pieces to attach to dolly and RC vehicle, or two flat straight brackets. The piece intended for the shown dolly required a rectangular hole to allow two adjacent screws rigidly fitting it to the dolly frame

5) Cable-ties, used for bouncer rear-end attachment to dolly, and tow-linkage

6) Suitable self-tapping screws to attach the bouncer front-end, and tow-link bracket to the dolly.

Tools required are screwdriver (or power driver), power drill, and drill bits sized for pilot holes.

For smaller infants, recommended fitting material is a pad/insert and a head/neck brace to help keep his/her body and neck straight.

Step 2: Mount Bouncer on Dolly

1) Attach bouncer rear-end with cable-ties

2) Drill a small pilot hole from bouncer-base to dolly. Attach front-end with sufficiently long screw to penetrate dolly frame. Above example uses a self-tapping screw approximately 40mm long

Step 3: Construct the Tow-link

1) Before deciding where to attach the tow-link, place the brackets from Step 1 at various levels on the chariot and RC vehicle to check that links will connect via cable-ties in at least two screw holes at almost the same elevation.

In the above example, the bracket piece connected below the chariot chassis was roughly the same elevation as the bracket piece connected to the RC vehicle's aluminium rear motor-shield top brace

2) Using pilot holes, screw bracket from Step 1(4) to dolly frame using two adjacent screws for rigidity. As described in Step 1(2), this rigidity allows a smaller turning circle. It also allows better chariot direction control when reversing.

Note: Adjust bracket piece mounting locations to suit your dolly and RC vehicle tow-link height. A higher RC vehicle bracket height, e.g. from an RC buggy wing-stay frame, may require the towed bracket screwed at the bouncer base top instead

3) Install heavy duty cable-ties to form rigid tow-linkage, using bracket piece holes and and strong mounting locations on your RC vehicle, e.g. aluminium motor-shield, rigid wing-stays.

In the above example, three cable-ties were used to mount the RC vehicle bracket to the RC vehicle motor-shield, and four cable-ties used for the bracket-to-bracket tow linkage.

If you like, you could trim stray cable-tie ends and remove sharp burrs with a file or blade. If using blades, wear leather or similar blade-proof gloves to protect your hands.

Step 4: Mount the Infant and Test the RC Chariot

1) Mount the infant. Use padding / neck brace available from baby-care shops or pharmacies if the infant's neck muscles are not yet fully developed (e.g. less than 3 months old).

2) Test the RC chariot. Drive as smoothly as possible; this will help the infant relax and enjoy the view :-)

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    Lucky kid's got a sweet ride! :)