Plane Design

Joseph Chafkin

For the first week of our project, the group overlooked how challenging designing a plane would actually be. We first experimented with paper airplanes, identifying where the center of gravity and center of pressure were located. Saeed demonstrated to us how small changes in an airplane's composition can completely change the plane's flight trajectory by folding different pieces of a paper airplane.

Keeping our lesson from Saeed in mind, the group began designing dozens of plane prototypes on Adobe Illustrator to be laser cut. Most designs were original, but we also tried tracing the plans of balsa wood glider toys. We cut designs out of wood, paper, foamcore, and various types of acrylic, but nothing was able to fly. With only a few days left and no functioning prototype for the plane, we felt for a moment that we had bit off more than we could chew. 

We considered changing the design from a plane to a dart, but decided that that change would be straying too far from the original design. Luckily, coach Matt was able to find the plans for a glider on that could be 3D printed on NuVu's MakerBot. Though we were disappointed to not be able to use our own plane design, this glider was functional, easy to make, and our only realistic way to make a working, final product in the few days we had left. Accepting this, we were able to move onto the final phases of our project.

Lots of stuff going on

Harper Mills

Today we shifted gears a little bit (pun intended). Matt luckily finished the construction of the body last night so the only thing left to do (for the body) were the electronics. Patrick and fellow intern Graeme worked on that part while the rest of us, under the guidance of fashion coach Tess, worked on fabricating some accessories. This started with a "How To" on using the sewing machine. Students practiced sewing straight lines and turning corners on recycled fabrics. Once they were comfortable with this they started brainstorming different animals or creatures they wanted to sculpt using their newly acquired sewing skills. Tess encouraged them to think outlandishly: make a rabbit Viking princess, a countess mermaid astronaut, the more creative your character is the more creative your sewing and crafting will be. It should be noted that these stuffed toys are relatively unrelated to the original toy/robot. 

After Anna and Felipe came up with their ideas for their characters (a Tasmanian devil-tiger hybrid ninja and a magical panda tailor) they sketched them out and made notes about dimensions, texture and other specifics. Then, with the help of Tess, cut out patterns that they cut and sewed together to create their toy. After some intense stuffing and some additional accessories they both created stuffed creatures that, if I were younger, I would keep with me for a lifetime. Great job guys!

Check out the pics:) 



Experiment with Gears

Jess Ferreira

Walker wanted to experiment with gears and how they worked. He wanted to include the marble in his experiment. Some problems with this experiement were that not all of the gears fit on to the square board like planned. Some of the holes on the board were not measured correctly and were put in the wrong place.


Neil Hildick-Smith

Eli's Destructo-Bot

The Beginning of the Rotation

Jess Ferreira

When the 3d pieces were fairly smooth and able to slide, we snapped the pieces in the board that Walker had made. This board was a representation of the four cubes that would be used in the final product. When the 3d pieces were sandwhiched with the two boards it was able to turn 360 degrees. The complicateions with this sandwhich type figure were when using three axis the 3d pieces would get jammed and wouln't be able to rotate properly. 

Ping-Pong Ball Launcher

Neil Hildick-Smith

Tommy's Ping-Pong Ball Launcher