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Dynamo Rover

Kids seem to have unlimited energy sometimes. And what better way to capture that energy by making Dynamo Rover with them. This human-powered bot was created by Instructables user masynmachien. One of the two servo motors acts as a dynamo, converting muscle power into electricity, which runs along a wire to the other servo and makes the bot move. The bot is adorned with cornstarch-based playcorn, a light craft material that gives it a bit of personality and fun color. You can even steer the rover by cranking the dynamo in reverse, using a system that reminds me of the cheapest R/C cars of my youth:

Inspired by toys from the times that remote control largely relied on mechanical solutions, I made the backwards movement into a steering action. By making one wheel run forwards only and cleverly positioning the other wheels, you can still go straight forwards, but moving backwards becomes turning, almost on the spot.

[via Hacked Gadgets]

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson is a Brooklyn-based creative technologist, Contributing Editor at MAKE, and Resident Research Fellow at New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP). He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.


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