Geometric chuck was a particular device that stacked up a number of rotating wheels which vary in speed and their offset to a particular central shaft. This was in order to machine ornate designs through the use of a lathe.
Ted Kinsman Light Painting
According to Hackaday, it is actually a piece of machining obscura that comes all the way from the 19th century and was initially inspired by a light painting. The particular light painting was reportedly built by Ted Kinsman as seen in PetaPixel.
Instead of the more complicated gears and wheels which were used in the distant past, Ted actually instead elected to use more modern stepper motors. Three different stepper motors were all stacked on top of each other. Every one of these motors were able to reportedly rotate at a more independent rate.
LED Spinning Plates
The design reportedly only implements three different steppers as the whole slip rings are still needed to send power as well as control signals to each stepper which are prohibitively expensive. The use of an Arduino was programmed in order to run the show.
This resulted in the changing of the speed of each motor which then affected the patterns that the system generates. In order to be able to place LEDs on the spinning plates, or even install a pen in order to mark a piece of paper, it is finally possible to generate all different manners of other beautiful spirograph-like patterns.
Lego Gear Designs
If the motor speed is varied, or if the positioning of the lights is varied, this will result in the change of patterns when painting with light. It can reportedly be a fun build to use for light painting along with some really great visuals produced.
Hackaday also notes appreciation for the creative use of the Arduino which in turn makes varying the whole parameters much easier compared to having to change out different gear sets in some of the more classical designs. For those that still miss those old school spirographs, it is actually possible to build one by using Lego.
Lego Mindstorm Robot Kit
It might also be entertaining to consider experimenting through the use of other light painting techniques. Art through the use of robots can be much easier with the help of things like Lego which only need to be assembled and programmed instead of built from scratch.
Lego has made robots even more entertaining and accessible to children with recent launches like the Mindstorm robot kit which is made to not only keep them busy but also provide a source of education while not missing out on being entertaining. There are also other more popular robots like the Boston Dynamics which, although aren't as widely available as Lego, still remains an interesting and educational piece of hardware.
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Written by Urian B.