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Carapace: an organic motion sculpture

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Project by Derek Hugger posted 10-28-2018 12:33 AM 1026 views 7 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Carapace is a wooden kinetic sculpture that simulates the motion of a sea turtle swimming. A complex series of mechanisms allows Carapace to swim up and down, tilt forward or back, and even lift its head up for a breath of air. As each mechanism is carefully linked to the next, each of Carapace’s flowing motions are driven by turning a single crank.

This sculpture has over 600 parts.

Its mechanisms include:
- gears
- hypocycloid reducers (one is single stage, one is dual stage)
- Peaucellier linkages
- cams
- a synchronized gear mechanism (to keep the flippers moving at a constant speed regardless of vertical motion)
- four bar linkages

Here’s a video of Carapace in motion:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tC0pmwG0XbU

If you’d like to make one yourself, detailed woodworking plans are available on my website:
www.derekhugger.com

Please leave a comment and let me know what you think!

-Derek





22 comments so far

View swirt's profile

swirt

3299 posts in 3143 days


#1 posted 10-28-2018 01:07 AM

The most amazing kinetic sculptures/machines I have ever seen. Incredible work.

-- Galootish log blog, http://www.timberframe-tools.com

View Dark_Lightning's profile

Dark_Lightning

3284 posts in 3280 days


#2 posted 10-28-2018 01:20 AM

WOW. This is incredible! Well done!

-- Random Orbital Nailer

View jamsomito's profile (online now)

jamsomito

254 posts in 597 days


#3 posted 10-28-2018 01:33 AM

Wow, amazing.

View PaulDoug's profile

PaulDoug

1613 posts in 1875 days


#4 posted 10-28-2018 02:03 AM

Congratulations! That is beautiful. I have always wanted to try one since I first saw his Hummingbird.

-- “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

View FancyShoes's profile

FancyShoes

588 posts in 1536 days


#5 posted 10-28-2018 03:55 AM

Great build. Thanks for sharing. Its stuff like this that brings me here.

View Rayne's profile

Rayne

1091 posts in 1711 days


#6 posted 10-28-2018 04:55 AM

Man, this is beautiful. I may give this is a shot one day. How much were all the parts from McMaster Carr for you?

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

1565 posts in 746 days


#7 posted 10-28-2018 05:49 AM

WOW, thanks for this, incredible.

-- Think safe, be safe

View majuvla's profile

majuvla

13211 posts in 3039 days


#8 posted 10-28-2018 09:33 AM

Just incredible

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Grulgor's profile

Grulgor

16 posts in 34 days


#9 posted 10-28-2018 10:16 AM

I love that,it’s so amazing. i’m wondering how to plan such a project!

View Albert's profile

Albert

515 posts in 3761 days


#10 posted 10-28-2018 03:14 PM

One of the most amazing things I’ve seen on LJs. Excellent!

View ClaudeF's profile

ClaudeF

793 posts in 1879 days


#11 posted 10-28-2018 06:15 PM

Wow! Beautiful work from designing to planning!

Claude

-- https://www.etsy.com/shop/ClaudesWoodcarving

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

3170 posts in 2428 days


#12 posted 10-28-2018 08:37 PM

Derek, you are one sick puppy! :D I am in awe and jealous of your abilities. Beautifully done!

-- Art

View Ron Stewart's profile

Ron Stewart

138 posts in 2675 days


#13 posted 10-28-2018 08:47 PM

That’s amazing, inspirational, and most definitely unique.

-- Ron Stewart

View Johan_Bengtsson's profile

Johan_Bengtsson

7 posts in 175 days


#14 posted 10-28-2018 09:19 PM

How do you start the design of your intricate mechanisms? Its a beautiful sculpture.

View Derek Hugger's profile

Derek Hugger

41 posts in 2129 days


#15 posted 10-28-2018 10:48 PM

Rayne – I think all the hardware was somewhere between $400 and $500.

Grulgor & Johan_Bengtsson – I start with animation software. I model some very basic shapes, and then I animate them in the way that I want them to move in real life. Then the fun starts. I begin to think of what kind of mechanisms can drive these motions. I rough in the geometry for the mechanisms and animate those as well. When I’m confident with how everything works, I start work in CAD. From there, I do all the design, geometry detailing, analysis, and simulations. Then, I cut parts and hope that everything works in real life.

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