We’ve seen some pretty cool alternatives to the standard wheelchair, including a leg-bound exoskeleton and Segway that you can sit on. But obviously nothing can be cooler than a wheelchair made entirely of Lego and powered by Mindstorms NXT kits.
Lego robot builder Simon "Burf" Burfield built himself a DIY Lego alternative to the expensive commercial electric wheelchair that works surprisingly well. Brace yourself for the screeching roar of 12 NXT motors.
This 44-pound contraption uses six Mindstorms NXTs, each with its own two touch sensors to control the direction of two Mindstorms motors. The chair uses a total of 12 Mindstorms motors to power 12 Rotacaster multi-directional wheels.
The control mechanism consists of one joystick linked to a single "master" NXT with four touch sensors and two motors that switch the aforementioned six NXTs. The frame, meanwhile, is basically made with “whole load of LEGO Technic,” and the chair is programmed with RobotC.
While the chair doesn't go anywhere particularly quickly--or quietly--it can carry a load of up to 200 pounds (90 kilograms). It’s also pretty maneuverable, as it’s able to move forwards and backwards as well as side-to-side.
Simon plans to further improve the chair by adding Bluetooth so he can control it remotely with an Android phone.
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