1/4 scale R/C Tachikoma build (Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex)

Hardsuit

New Member
Current progress on my new R/C Tachikoma build. It'll be approximately 1/4 scale, using two main measurements as the limiting
factors: 1) The 4" mecanum wheels, and 2) Being able to fit through a 30" wide door frame while being driven via remote control.

For reference, the finished dome in the photos below measures 13" across, and the main "eye" sensor holes measuring 3-3/4" across.

The upper body dome was printed in 4 parts, and then joined together. Each section took 6 hours of print time, and ~80 grams of ABS
plastic. The support structure for the part while it was printing actually weighed more than the part itself at 110 grams. (I plan to shred
them back down for use in the filament extruder at the Makerspace to reclaim the ABS for re-use at a later date.)

First print section just finishing printing:

Dry fitting 3 of the four sections together:

Wet sanding some of the parts:

A peek underneath at the joint seams:

All four sections joined, bondo and sanding in progess:

Assembled after final primer pass and 600 grit wet sanding:


The finished build should have synchronized eye movement, individual arm and claw open/close controls, body leaning/twisting/bowing/rearing,
and abdomen rotation/wiggle. The mecanum wheels will allow for sideways movement in addition to the normal forwards/reverse/turning abilities.
I will also be putting in a two-way audio system and a FPV setup for stand back "PUSH the Trash Can" style interaction at conventions.
 

3oin

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Subscribed ! :) Look at my Avatar !

Can't wait to see how this turns out :) good luck, I'll be watching with interest.

p.s. what 3D printer did you use to print such large sections ?

Thanks

3oin
 

zookone

Well-Known Member
My only question is... Why so small? It should be like, at least 4x bigger.

Just Kidding, totally awesome! love tachikoma. totally subscribed and am going to follow your build.
 

Hardsuit

New Member
Quick update...

Designed and printed angled pipe clamps (for 3/4" schedule 40 PVC pipe) that the legs will be mounted from. I also have
successfully modified my R/C transmitter to now have 4 joysticks, by replacing the 4 rotary pots with 2 Sony PSP joysticks.
I will be 3d printing enclosures that will mount/blend-in with the top shoulders of the transmitter case. The main gimbal joysticks
will be moved as usual with the thumbs, and the PSP joysticks will be moved with the index finger. Pics to be added in a later post.


As a side note, I would *highly* recommend the FrSky Taranis R/C transmitter for anyone who needs a higher end R/C controller. It
will handle 16 channels out of the box (using two receivers), or 32 channels if S-bus compatible servos are used. It also runs on the
OpenTX firmware, so it is Open Source and fully hackable, with the ability to assign any channel to any control, switch, pot, joystick,
mix, or combination thereof. Bonus is the pricing, which is under $200.
 

Hardsuit

New Member
Minor update on the Tachikoma:

New parts arrived fresh from the 3d printer (shoutout to the PolyPrinter folks for using the legs as one of their prototyping shapes as they do beta testing on their new double-wide printers), and also a paint color test on the upper dome body

13771826394_af892be102_c.jpg
 

Hardsuit

New Member
Legs look sweet. What have you been using to 3D model the geometry?

Lightwave. I've been a user on and off since the days of the Video Toaster. It has required some adjustment to my
normal modeling methods to accommodate the needs of 3d printing (avoiding booleans, watertight meshes, etc)
but I'm adjusting fairly quickly.

Workflow is generally:
Lightwave (modeling)
Accutrans3D (conversion from .LWO to .STL and watertight check)
Netfabb (scaling adjustments and .STL mesh repair)
KISSlicer (gcode generation for 3d printing)
Pronterface (printing control of the Polyprinter)

Print material is ABS (1.72mm filament, usually Octave or Makerbot brands), and layer height is .3mm
The Polyprinter is capable of much finer resolution, but since I am doing lots of surface prep work anyways
(the sanding, Bondo, sanding, filler primer, sanding, filler primer, sanding, etc etc etc dance...) I'm just
printing it at the lower resolutions to have the parts print a lot faster. We have to babysit our prints at the
Makerspace (not allowed to start a print and then leave for 5 hours while it prints...) so speed of printing
is something that is a consideration.
 
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zookone

Well-Known Member
A lightwave user - cool. I still use Form*Z we used to use Lightwave at one job I had to create our animations. I never ended up using it for modeling. I would encourage you check out Rhino I just started to learn it. It is so easy, only took me about 4 days to adjust. Rhino produces some pretty stellar .stls. It would let you skip the accutrans step. As you might have more control with your models faceting when converting from Polyshell/nurbs to the facetted polymesh stl.

Does the amount of Polys slow the printer down too or just build layer thickness? Thats sort of rough you have to campout. But I guess there are other tools and stuff to work on huh?

looking forward to seeing more of your mech!
 

Hardsuit

New Member
A lightwave user - cool. I still use Form*Z we used to use Lightwave at one job I had to create our animations. I never ended up using it for modeling. I would encourage you check out Rhino I just started to learn it. It is so easy, only took me about 4 days to adjust. Rhino produces some pretty stellar .stls. It would let you skip the accutrans step. As you might have more control with your models faceting when converting from Polyshell/nurbs to the facetted polymesh stl.

Does the amount of Polys slow the printer down too or just build layer thickness? Thats sort of rough you have to campout. But I guess there are other tools and stuff to work on huh?

looking forward to seeing more of your mech!

Biggest issue with Rhino is I would have to pay for a copy in a little while, and a fairly large amount at that. I'd rather putter along with my legit (if older) copy of Lightwave for now. The Accutrans step is mebbe 2 minutes long at worst, so not a big deal or time sink.

The number of polys doesn't slow the printer down at all. It does effect how quickly KISSlicer can generate the gcode (which is what drives the printer), but it's not anywhere near enough of a slowdown for it to be an issue.

And camping out isn't too bad, since it lets me multitask on the sanding/bondo/primer/sanding/painting dance for parts that are already printed.
 

Hardsuit

New Member
Got a lot done today. Glued together the two halves of the legs for 3 out of the 4 legs. Also got bondo passes on all three,
and multiple coats of filler primer on two. All that was happening while I was babysitting the prints for the lower body dome
sections. I got all 5 of the duplicate sections printed, now just have to model up the final section for the front. The five currently
printed sections are where the mounting points for the 4 legs and the rear abdomen/cockpit attach to the central body, while
the final section is where the 2 arms and the cannon are mounted from.

Does it smell funny in here?
13839963985_a594890a47_n.jpg 13839985893_6d8664683d_n.jpg
Lots and lots of sanding...
13840017883_4d0fa001b0_n.jpg 13839949165_8e7680bf0b_n.jpg
Starting to see progress.
13840338724_0309fdb2a9_n.jpg
Lower dome taking shape. (These sections took 2 hours and 15 minutes to print per section, and used 29 grams of ABS each)
13839977335_4cb300b4d2_n.jpg
All in a day's work...
13840100403_e32f4080d3_n.jpg
 
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Hardsuit

New Member
Not really a part of the build, but a useful demo piece for when I do a panel or have a table at a con or Maker Faire.

I used a failed print from one of the upper dome sections to show a visual explanation of the finishing process for the Tachikoma.

Starting on the left:
Raw print - Sanded raw print - Bondo - Sanded Bondo - Primer - Rough sanded primer - 600 grit wet sanded primer - Final finish color
13887818994_ed5d28cbd4_c.jpg
 
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Hardsuit

New Member
Next bit of Tachikoma work:
Assembled, Bondoed, and started on primer layers for the bottom body dome, plus more primer and sanding steps on the other parts.
13962403803_574fdeebe3_z.jpg
 
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Hardsuit

New Member
Hardsuit,

This is going to be an epic build. And R/C to boot. Any plans to kit it?

Best regards,

Mark

No, for multiple reasons:
1) It's pretty damn huge. The dome in those pics is 13" across, and the legs are 14" long. I haven't even started on the biggest part yet, which will be about 20" long.
2) I have *zero* experience in molding and casting stuff.
3) It's *huge*, and the material costs for the molds would be insane for a very questionable ROI.

There is a good chance I will just bundle up the base .LWO files along with the final .STL files and just dump 'em all on to Thingiverse.
 
Hey man this is looking great! If you need some molding and casting tips and tricks just send me a message. I will see what I can do to help!

Thanks,

Tank
 
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