For my main project, I was once again inspired by the laser cutters, although I may end up going with an alternative manufacturing route after hearing a peer’s less-than-optimal experience creating gears with them. As far as I know, my main project idea is an original idea, although I am sure toys of the same vain exist, the flipbook below being one. I am planning to make a desktop toy, roughly 6” in diameter, named “Mood Rings.”
This toy will consist of three independently rotating concentric rings, with each of the rings holding different elements, again playing up the Kawaii aesthetic. The outer and middle rings will have holders for mylar buttons, the outer ring having buttons of ~1” diameter, and the middle having 1.25” diameters. The outer ring buttons will have different headwear, such as a top hat, tiara, bunny ears, etc. The middle ring will have faces of characters sporting different expressions, such as angry/pouty, yawning/sleepy, and sparkly/gleeful. The inner ring will have a continuous, fun design that’ll be entertaining as the rings rotate, and I would like for the central circle to spin as well, likewise with a design that takes advantage of the dynamic nature of this toy.
Taken from: https://weheartit.com/entry/175735410 artist @SelcouthAcid
A subtle but key aspect of this toy I am aiming for is a satisfying feeling to its turning. I want the gears to have a sort of heavy feel to them, and for a nice “clunk” to happen when settling on an option in the middle and outer rings. Alternatively, I’ll use a planetary gear system as they give a very smooth action. I believe I can achieve this by making the gears large, and out of a heavier material, which is why I am leaning towards a different manufacturing method for the gear system. I may go with off-the-shelf components for it, as I want to personally create and/or draw each of the attire and facial options. I’ll be doing this within Photoshop, using my drawing tablet and editing different works from to-be-credited artists.
For rotating each ring, I am planning to have a rotary arm mesh with the gears at different depths, hence allowing for the independent movement/selection. The inner ring and circle will interface with both the outer and middle rings so you get the fun movement regardless of which you’re moving.
A design with a similar vibe to what I’ll add to the inner sections, taken from: https://www.vecteezy.com/vector-art/551352-tribal-sun-spiral-vector-icon
I honestly have no idea where this idea came from, I suppose movement-wise this isn’t unlike a slot machine, since it involves three separately spinning sections. I recently made some buttons as well, so this again seemed like a good, natural opportunity to have my art and engineering worlds collide for something unique. I really look forward to the different challenges this project will pose; I learned a ton during the upcycle one, and expect to likewise gain some skills in a really fun and interesting way.