Want to skid through the polar vortex on a DIY snowmobile? Learn how to make a remote-controlled 3D printed snowmobile created by Polish maker Nikodem Bartnik.
As winter was approaching in Poland, 18-year-old Polish, Nikodem Bartnik, started craving for a project that would challenge his CAD design skills when the snowmobile idea crossed his mind. The 3D printed snowmobile is a mix of electronic, metal, and mostly 3D printed parts. It’s an ambitious project that left Nikodem dedicating his time on drawing and modeling (via Fusion 360) before he spent a couple of days printing.
Bartnik, who goes by Nikus on Instructables, is curious about robots, electronics, and programming. He is a dedicated hobbyist who shares his DIY projects on YouTube and has a craving for making impossible things.
This seasonal Weekend Project is one of his best. And, as Winter persists through North America and Europe, there’s no better time to build yourself DIY snowmobile.
It’s important to note that this is one of the more complex projects we’ve featured, so beginners may want to start something a bit less intense. There are also a number of non-printed components that need to be purchased to build the snowmobile, so be prepared to pay if you’re looking to build this for the next snow day.
NOTE: This project is fun and challenging for any willing hobbyist. However, Nikodem was let down by his motor choice because it could not give him the desired speed. Therefore, you may want to search for a stronger motor before undertaking this project.
Let’s figure out how you can make this 3D printed snowmobile on your own.
These are the main components:
This is close to what you need.
Now that we’ve covered this lengthy list of parts, let’s jump into the assembly process.
Start with the track mechanism, which is going to work alongside two tensioners, some gears, and other components.
Be sure to use this informative assembly video to help you visualize the assembly process:
This is the setup that will control the snowmobile when you want to change direction. Nikodem admits that he struggled with the design of the steering system because he wanted to have suspension for both skids in addition to using a servo motor to control them.
He finally figured out how to come up with a simple and flexible solution that uses a servo motor for controlling and springs for suspension.
This method is strong and cheap and was also used to connect the pieces of the track. No screws were needed; you will only need a candle, filament, and an old screwdriver.
How to join the track pieces:
You will have to fix the motor first before you install the track. Otherwise, you’ll make the assembly harder than it should be. Use M3 screws and nuts to secure the motor, and attach the gear (Spur Gear (22 teeth).stl) to it using a screw.
Note: Initially, Nikodem had used a gear whose ratio was too big for the motor. For this reason, he was forced to redesign the new gear to make it work as expected.
You can now close the track loop by ‘creating the last rivet.’ Place the already assembled track under the back of the snowmobile and roll it over until the two ends meet; then pass filament through the holes of the mating parts and melt both ends.
Other customizations like painting are entirely optional. If you’re brave enough to build this snowmobile and venture out into the polar vortex of winter, best of luck and happy sledding!
License: The text of "Weekend Project – Shred in this 3D Printed Snowmobile" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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