Ian sent in this great Egg-Bot plot of a kiwi from…
…New Zealand (of course). Thanks for sharing your photos, Ian!
In the 1870s, Eadweard Muybridge, using brand new photographic techniques, helped settle a bet about whether horses lifted all their feet off the ground at once. His iconic pictures of horses in motion are frequently used in arts and crafts. (Aside: we even ran into them at Maker Faire in a FlipBooKit animation.)
Amanda found a file on thingiverse of outlines of the Muybridge horses that were intended for use for laser cutting (for animation purposes). She remixed it for use with the Eggbot to make the horses go around the egg and published her Muybridge Carousel design on thingiverse.
While talking about egg sizes in the context of the Eggbot project, we realized that while we have access to a few samples, we do not have a good understanding of the normal variation in the sizes of various bird eggs.
The sizes of chicken eggs are well understood and well regulated, but for other types of bird eggs (like the emu egg above) the sizes are not necessarily so standard. If you have access to other types of eggs or eggshells, we’d like your help in gathering data about the size and variation in these other types of eggs.
We’ve set up a survey form to collect egg size data and we plan to post about our results once we have collected enough data.
We have a programming competition every year at the Wolfram Technology Conference, which in past years was the Mathematica One-Liner Competition. This year we held the Egg-Bot Challenge, a change of pace to give attendees a chance to exercise their graphics skills. The idea of the competition was to use Mathematica to generate designs that could be plotted on spheres…
Above is first place winner Jan ?íha’s composition of sinusoidal motifs, and below is second place winner Michael Sollami’s spirograph designs. Head over to see the rest of the entries.
Ann posted instructions in our forums for creating an electric kistka (wax pen) for the Eggbot for traditional Pysanky egg dying techniques. She used nichrome wire, krylon tape, a modified kistka, and a 2xAA battery holder with a switch and described how to mount it in the Eggbot. She posted a couple of designs to Thingiverse demonstrating the technique including the rose design pictured above.
For a Humpty Dumpty design, she wrote up how she made it:
Using eggbot and custom electric kistka, plotted the Humpty Dumpty picture and text on an egg. First plotted outline, dyed brick, colored in bricks by hand with kistka, dyed blue.
You can check out her other designs for the Eggbot on Thingiverse.
Despite what you might guess from the name, our Egg-Bot kit is not just for eggs. In fact, it turns out to be a pretty freaking amazing machine for decorating and personalizing your own Christmas ornaments!
Today we’re releasing the “Eggbot Holiday Super Pak” — a set of Eggbot-ready holiday ornament designs to give you a head start. The set includes the designs above and many more. It’s free, available for download as part of our EggBot Example set (on our GitHub releases page), and will be periodically updated as we add more designs.
Read on for some additional tips and tricks for using ornaments in the Eggbot!
Cliff came with an esoteric dilemma: how to engrave a glass Klein bottle. Acme Klein bottles are blown from borosilicate (Pyrex) glass, which has a low coefficient of thermal expansion, which means that the usual way of engraving a curved glass surface—laser engraving—doesn’t actually work. With more common types of glass, you can use a laser engraver to etch anything you want into the surface. But with Pyrex, the surface simply melts unevenly rather than creating the microfractures that give an etched appearance.
There was one complication, which is that a Klein bottle is a funny shaped object! In order to fixture the Klein bottle in the Eggbot, we made a couple of extra large couplers—much larger than the tiny pads normally used to hold the ends of an egg—with EVA foam rubber pads on their surfaces. The extra large couplers held the Klein bottle securely for rotation.
We did some initial tests with Sharpie and a medium sized Klein bottle to make sure our fixturing worked well.
And then we hooked up an engraver for a real test.
Here’s what the Klein bottle looked like after engraving. Not being particularly creative, we etched the word “KLEIN” into the side. Because the Klein bottle is made from thick borosilicate glass, it takes engraving remarkably well. It is a much more sturdy object than the fragile Christmas ornaments that we have engraved in the past.
While we can’t imagine that it is a major market segment, the Eggbot seems to be ideal for working with Klein bottles (insomuch as anything can be perfect for working with a closed, non-orientable, boundary-free manifold). But regardless, it’s quite wonderful to find an unexpected application like this, where our little robot can solve a real-world problem that we had never even considered.
One of our favorite things about the Eggbot is that we get to connect to the communities that embrace it and find new uses for it. One such group is (not surprisingly) egg artists. They affectionately call themselves “eggers” and are, more likely than not, members of the International Egg Art Guild. One of their enterprising members, Fran, has been creating patterns for use with the Eggbot and sharing them through the Eggers Eggbot Group on Facebook or on Thingiverse.
A pattern, after being marked with the Eggbot using a pencil or marker, can be carved, painted, or decorated in a variety of ways. Carving is generally done by hand using a lightweight air powered drill (such as the Turbo Carver).
As with any specialized group of enthusiasts, they have regional shows to display and sell their creations, and to buy and sell the tools of the trade. Fran uses her Eggbot both for marking eggs for her own projects, and for marking eggs to sell at shows for others to finish.
The Eggbot is particularly useful in evenly distributing a repeating pattern around the egg—something that can be difficult to do by hand. The interlocking circles shown on two of the ostrich eggs above were also used to make the egg ornament at the top.
Thank you to Fran for sharing your pictures and projects!