Tinkering School

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Day Six - Vroom, vroom

2013 Session 1 - SeniorsgeverComment

Friday. The last full day of Tinkering School. Hey, why not start something new? At Thursday night's dinner Gever announced that the Friday project would be two-wheeled vehicles, four teams, and a timed race. Yay! But first, everything that we have built will have to be taken apart... IMG 7095

After deconstruction, we have a quick pow-wow to refine the rules and parameters for the race and the construction process. Everyone gets four eight foot 1x4's, two wheels of mixed dimension, and five tokens (hand made by Elijah and Kevin). The tokens can be exchanged for limited amounts of additional materials, or to pay for "big advice", or to buy down their race time (five seconds per token) on Saturday morning. Inter-team bartering and trade is fully supported, and everyone immediately starts trading wheels around. IMG 7100

Followed by a frenzy of design and planning. IMG 7107

IMG 7112

Followed by much prototyping. IMG 7118

Portrait of a Young Tinkerer: Elijah IMG 7130

And then some commitments to key design decisions. The Nooi (consisting of Kevin, Mica, and Rhody) have decided to use a eucalyptus pole as their steering shaft. IMG 7135

Listening in to the conversations in various teams, Gever picks up on a common thread of steering-related consternation and decides to do a 90-second mechanical engineering intervention. IMG 7148

Gever's talk gives some teams confidence to move forward with their plans, and some decide to adopt a new idea. IMG 7155

Kip takes a meditation break as he strips the bark off of a good, solid, eucalyptus stick. IMG 7160

Every cut is precious since the wood is so scarce. Measure once and cut twice suddenly makes perfect contextual sense. IMG 7163

Gabriel and Serena lock their rear wheel into their chassis. IMG 7168

Unwilling to commit to a specific height for their steering column, the Nooi decide to leave it full length for the time being. IMG 7177

The Panda team (Gil, Glynn, and Kip) has a very unique design. IMG 7190

Serena (helping with the blog tonight) thinks that this picture makes it look like she's using her in-progress front wheel mount as a manicure stand. IMG 7195

"Hey Gil?" "Yes, Gever?" "Is that really how you are going to drive?" "Uh, maybe?" IMG 7203

Gever has developed a very fashionable solution to the slit pant-leg problem. IMG 7209

Serena and Gabriel (members of the Kablooi) get their chassis board connected to their first steering solution. IMG 7213

Mica and Rhody toiling away in abject despair back in the bat-infested corner of the barn. IMG 7224

Glynn handles the business end of the drilling operation. IMG 7232

And Kip helps at the other end. IMG 7228

Gabriel at the chopsaw - just one moment of many-hour frenzy of activity in the barn. IMG 7246

The Piki (Althea, Elijah, Sam, and Kate) vehicle is coming together nicely. IMG 7250

Meanwhile, down in the nursery. IMG 7257

Glynn encodes secret messages in the Panda paint job. IMG 7267

Secrets? IMG 7275

Kip connects with his inner Avenger. IMG 7292

And then, somewhat suddenly, there is actual vehicle testing going on. Gil takes the USS Pandaprise out for a spin. IMG 7299

With fewer than 30 minutes to tools-down, Althea and Elijah work hard to finish the Harley-style steering on their vehicle. IMG 7320

And the Nooi get within one eye-bolt of being done. IMG 7326

Then the Piki vehicle comes out of the barn for a test drive. IMG 7331

Feet up, headed down hill - but wait, you forgot your helmet! IMG 7338

Gil picks up speed. IMG 7350

"Hey, Althea! Are those your yellow shorts?" "No Gil, that's my shirt." IMG 7354

Looking like a cross between a Vespa and a poodle, the Kablooi vehicle turns out to be the most maneuverable. IMG 7358

Vroom! IMG 7387

Portrait of a Young Tinkerer, Elijah with a Helmet. IMG 7393

Go Kate, go! IMG 7401

Gil keeps up the Tinkering School tradition by riding down to the conference center on the outside of the vehicle. IMG 7409

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