Category Archives: Building Techniques

FIRST LEGO League Compatible Robot – Mark III

FLL-Robot Mark III - logo

This is third in a serious of FIRST LEGO League (FLL) Robot which can be made from a single LEGO Mindstorms EV3 (Home 31313) kit and a handful of other LEGO Technic Parts. It was built with the intention of being demonstration Robot that the team members of the Metal Minds Robotics Team I mentor could build at home with their own EV3 Kits.

This Robot is a development of the Mark II Robot with a number of refinements, and the addition of another Power Take Off point at the rear of the Robot. This later addition allows for two Powered Attachments to mounted on the Robot at one time. Another improvement which greatly improves the Robots Turn and Straight Line accuracy is the replacement of the Jockey Wheels with a pair of  “Angled Ball Joints“.

The Unofficial LEGO® Technic Builder’s Guide: 2nd edition

The Unofficial LEGO® Technic Builder’s Guide: 2nd edition

Four years after the release of His first book comes its updated, extended and improved edition available directly from No Starch Press and also from Amazon, Book Depository and other sellers.

Important: the book can be currently pre-ordered from No Starch Press with 30% discount if you use code sariel30. If you’re looking for a free worldwide shipping, check Book Depository.

A Better Replacement for the traditional LEGO Cord/String

1.8mm Atwood Rope
I posed the question, “Does anyone know of a suitable replacement for the LEGO String that I can use that is stronger and more reliable?” I was struggling with the issue that all my long lengths of LEGO Stuff seems to regularly SHRINK on me….. I basically would like to have a 50-100 Reel of it at hand.

Holonomic Platform for 125mm Rotacaster Omniwheels

I’ve been working on a very solid, Holonomic Platform to be used with the large 125mm Rotacaster Omniwheels as part of my display for the TAZ-Brick Collector Club’s Brixhibition to be held on the weekend of 20-21 April 2013.

LEGO Technic Planetary Geared, Drive Assembly

Introduction to Planetary Gearsets & Gear Ratios:

Any planetary gearset has three main components:

  • The sun gear
  • The planet gears and the planet gears’ carrier
  • The ring gear

LEGO Technic Compatible Helical Gears

The teeth on helical gears are cut at an angle to the face of the gear. When two teeth on a helical gear system engage, the contact starts at one end of the tooth and gradually spreads as the gears rotate, until the two teeth are in full engagement. This gradual engagement makes helical gears operate much more smoothly and quietly than spur gears. For this reason, helical gears are used in almost all car transmissions.

Technics & Mindstorms Compatible ‘MinuteBot Baseplate’

I had a package arrive today from Soren Jensen, in Copenhagen, Denmark containing a pair of LEGO Technics & Mindstorms Compatible ‘MinuteBot Baseplates’. The [MinuteBot] Base is a thick, very robust base plate that is a must have for your Technics Models and LEGO Mindstorms Robots. The [MinuteBot Base] is a rectangular plate measuring 21 x 30 Technic holes.

The Unofficial LEGO Technic Builder’s Guide

The Unofficial LEGO® Technic Builder’s Guide: 2nd edition
The Unofficial LEGO Technic Builder’s Guide is filled with building tips for creating strong yet elegant machines and mechanisms with the Technic system. Author Pawel Sairel Kmiec will teach you the foundations of LEGO Technic building, from simple machines to advanced mechanics, even explaining how to create realistic to-scale models. Sariel, a world-renowned LEGO Technic expert, offers unique insight into mechanical principles like torque, power translation, and gear ratios, all using Technic bricks.

Gripper (Claw) for Small 2×2 & 2×4 LEGO Bricks

Here’s a Gripper for Small LEGO Bricks I’ve developed for a larger project. It is designed to pick-up standard 2×2 and 2×4 LEGO Bricks. The gripper is opened and closed via a [spfm] with a 24-tooth Clutch in the drive train to take care of the need for limit-switches and encoders.

High Volume Pneumatic Compressor

Here are the Instructions to build a LEGO Technic, High Volume Pneumatic Compressor. The Compressor uses 2x Large Pneumatic Pumps to fill the Air tank. A large Pneumatic Cylinder is used to drive a Pole Reversing Switch which turns the Compressor off when the system is fully pressurized.

ExoForce Wheeled Rover Prototype

This is my ExoForce Rover Wheeled Prototype Chassis. Using the Exoforce Wheel Mounts discussed in my previous post, I now have the basic chassis set-up. The Chassis allows both the front and rear wheels to be driven. Also both front and rear axles steer in order to help to decrease the robots turning circle.

Modifing ExoForce Wheels for Mindstorms

Using LEGO® ExoForce Devastator Wheels (160mm D. x 28mm) to go Off-road with your LEGO® Mindstorms NXT Robots is a great idea, but as they are, they are pretty useless for a robot. This is due to the mount arrangement of the wheels hub mounting points. As mentioned in my previous post, ‘Using ExoForce Devastator Wheels’. I came up with a reliable method of connecting the wheels to your robot’s chassis. This in mind, I decided to go one step further….

Using ExoForce Devastator Wheels

Using LEGO ExoForce Devastator Wheels (160mm D. x 28mm) to go Off-road with your LEGO NXT Robots is a great idea. But, the biggest problem is creating a solid attachment to you Robot. 

The Ultimate LEGO Technics Crane Claw

I’ve been working on-and-off for a couple years now on a reliable LEGO Technics, Crane Claws which will pick up balls reliably. Initially I started of with a two sided clamp type claw with a rounded cage to secure the ball, but this only worked reliably if the claw was directly over the ball. There had to be a better way!

PF Battery Box with Li-Poly Rechargeable

I decided to modify a Lego Power Functions Battery Box and fit with an 11.1 Volt Li-Poly Rechargeable Battery Pack & use a Regulator I.C. to provide the regulated 9Volts required by Power Functions type Devices. The modification was easy, but time consuming to remove the excess plastic in order to get the Li-Poly Rechargeable Battery Pack to fit inside the battery box.

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