Tinkering School

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TSO-G Day 3: Framing Takes Shape, Wheels Roll

Tinkering School Staff1 Comment

Many designs require several attempts to build successfully, and A.J.’s water storage and release mechanism was such a design. His team was quickly advancing, attaching wheels roughly halfway along the 4 foot by 8 foot trailer frame, and adding structural supports along the way. Yet, seemingly the smallest of intricate details proved to require the most focused of attempts and failures.

Senior Tinkerer, A.J., fills his sink’s water storage container to test his PVC plumbing.

Senior Tinkerer, A.J., fills his sink’s water storage container to test his PVC plumbing.

“Let’s just call this A.J.’s Tenth Sink, and, hopefully, it works,” he said before filling his water container fitted with a multiple jointed spigot and pipe assembly.

Leak after leak had sent A.J. and his teammates back to the shop to troubleshoot the device, and the tenth attempt proved to be no different.

Such failure is at the heart of the Tinkerers’ collaborative learning experience, and many designs for attaching wheels, joining 8 foot boards to create 16 foot-long RVs, and building the proposed amenities undergo failure before success.

Senior Tinkerers put the top framing on their RV’s base and must now tackle how to steer the vehicle.

Senior Tinkerers put the top framing on their RV’s base and must now tackle how to steer the vehicle.

“The name of our RV is Bessie the Cow,” senior Tinkerer, Leo, joked with his teammates during the lunch break.

Their challenge will be driving a 6 foot by 16 foot RV on six wheels that allow for 6 inches of clearance above the ground. They succeeded in flipping their top framing over and onto the base of the vehicle. Next steps will be to start bracing walls, adding bedding, and constructing a steering mechanism.

Other teams are adding wheels to the flooring of their RVs, yet to encounter the many problems that have impeded Tinkerers in the past such as cambering. Tinkerers worked steadfastly to the end of the day, seeing only success on the horizon.

A.J. celebrates his eleventh and final attempt at creating a water storage and spigot release for his team’s RV sink.

A.J. celebrates his eleventh and final attempt at creating a water storage and spigot release for his team’s RV sink.

For A.J. a small hole in a PVC elbow kept him from succeeding on his tenth try, but this was an easy fix. Swapping out the old PVC elbow joint with a new one, A.J. prevailed on his eleventh attempt.

“Yes!” he said, all smiles, as he watched water empty through the water reservoir and out of the spigot he had crafted.

Check out the photo slideshow and video of Tinkerers’ second build day.

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