ROBOT magazine article part 2
ROBOT magazine is supposed to be posting building instructions shortly for the bot I submitted for the Fall 2006 issue - keep checking here if you want to build one.
This one was done for fun... just to see how many parts I could throw at it from the retail kit... I ran out of most of the beams, all of the little black connectors, and all the Hassenpins and those similar-looking grey pins. I also was asked to use all the motors and sensors...
My wife didn't like it because it looked "creepy" (her words)... if it weren't so loud, I'd put it under the bed or couch and have it grab her ankle (of course, then I'd be sleeping on that couch).
I'm guessing they have something to do with Steve...maybe they are the new right angle conectors?
To expand (and it's high time I did this), proper credit should go to a lot more than Steve Hassenplug, as (a) the other MUPs either also suggested the need, and all pushed for such a piece to be designed and added, and (b) that LEGO listened. I picked on Steve because I know him, and has name was the easiest to pervert into a "pin". As I said before, all blame for introducing this label should rest squarely on MY SHOULDERS, and mine alone... but all credit for the piece should go to LEGO and the four original MUPs.
Hassenpins, (also called that by Jim in the blog recently), are a major plus point for the shop version of the NXT kit. There are none on the educational kit.
I saw your previous question about the differences. I will write a comparison next week ... I am away for a few days now.
Be seeing you,
Hence there should be nothing to blame yourself for, Brian (at least not for that har har! Just kidding...)
I'm really curious, though, about their actual benefit - as for me, I'm using them rather scarcely on my bots, finding them pretty bulky (but I might be more fond of very compact robots than other people).
Matthias Paul (quite absorbed with finishing the leJOS 3 release presently, to draw a clean line before the run for NXT Java starts)
What would make me even happier?
A similar pin that hold in all 3 dimensions, not just 2. A cube could be made with 4 of them.
A couple of weeks ago I decided it was time to try my hand at building with studless technology in preparation for my purchase of an NXT (I don't know when we Australians are getting the set). My first efforts were directed at determining how to build basic structures. In particular how to build a rigid (in 3D) open rectangle. Now this is a trivial task with studded technology (4 beams and 4 plates) but quite a difficult task using studless techno. I came up with a couple of solutions and also studied LEGO's approach. These solutions all had 3 problems in common. 1) "Expensive" in the number of (often) rare parts.
2) Inellegant - their appearance is not attractive.
3) Many holes in the beams are blocked with pins thus making them unavailable for axles.
Enter the "Hassenpin". Problems 1 and 2 solved brilliantly. The MUPers are to be congratulated for recognising the need and LEGO for responding appropriately.
I have studied closely how rigidity is achieved in both LEGO models and those that fans have built. Basically two approaches are used. Either build the model around a large piece that has inherant rigidity (eg a turntable, motor or NXT brick) or stack a lot of beams horizontally. These methods are well and good for many situations but there are some where they are not appropriate and the "Hassenpin" fills the need.
I would be happy if LEGO sold packets of these pins as I don't think 8 in the set is anywhere near enough. In the meantime I just have to wait patiently to even get an NXT.
Robotics Investigation Force
See the centre of the box lid in the large picture linked from here:
There cannot be many Hassenpins though, as I can only see one on the lid and none in the trays.
The 90 degree ones ARE EXTREMELY useful! They are expensive to purchase though!