LEGO-firing turret targets tender tootsies
August 4th, 2022—
Stepping on LEGO bricks is a meme for a cause: it actually @#$%&! hurts. LEGO brick design is ingenious, however the engineers didn’t take into account the ramifications of their minimalist building system. We’ve seen individuals do loopy issues for Web factors, reminiscent of stroll throughout a mattress of LEGO like they’re scorching coals — or in Adam Beedle’s case, construct a LEGO-firing turret particularly to shoot plastic bricks beneath an individual’s ft.
This undertaking consists of two distinct sub-systems: the mechanical turret that launches the LEGO bricks and the concentrating on system that acknowledges ft. For the previous, Beedle devised a intelligent rubber band-based mechanism that cranks into place with a rack and pinion. An Arduino Uno rotates the pinion with a continuous-rotation servo motor. The pinion gear has a couple of enamel lacking, so it releases the rubber bands and flings the loaded LEGO brick after a couple of rotations. One other brick then drops down from a hopper and the cycle repeats, leading to automated firing.
Beedle 3D-printed the entire turret’s elements and used a second turret motor to supply rotation. The turret additionally has a webcam mount, which is how the concentrating on system finds ft. Beedle doesn’t present a lot element on this method, however we assume that he used one thing like OpenCV operating on a PC to detect ft. The PC would then ship a command to the Arduino by means of the serial port telling it to rotate the turret within the correct course till the detected foot is centered within the video feed. When it will get shut, it begins spinning the pinion to shoot LEGO bricks.
From what we are able to see within the video, plainly the turret labored as meant. That’s to say that Beedle efficiently constructed one thing that may pressure him to step on painful LEGO bricks.