This bulky, wooden device is the Flap-Jack Flipper. As the name suggest, this contraption was built to flip pancakes on a Griddle. Bryce and myself were having trouble coming up with an idea for this project, a sort of writer’s block for designing a prototype. We could not seem to find the middle ground between something practical and something truly interactive. So, we settled for something more on the interactive but less practical side of the spectrum.What we came up with was something that prepared food in the most convoluted but fun way possible. It is built to make breakfast a bit of a challenge; to kinda make a game out of the most important meal o the day. That was the the thought process that brought about the Flap-Jack Flipper (Immensely creative, I know..).
The machine is mostly made up of a wooden frame and a “pully” system I created using foam core and skateboard wheels. It operates using servos to pull the main body machine and then a third servo operates the spatula arm. The worries and challenges of constructing this mechanism were the fact the we were not sure if the servos could pull that much weight and even after they proved to do so, we did not fully figure out the alignment for the string on said servos. Although our first iteration had a few design flaws, it did function much more efficiently than we first thought it would. The inputs for the user consist of three buttons on the back control panel correlating with the 3 outputs, those being the three servos.
The Rolling pully system. Servo pulling the spatula system Arduino operated control panel (truly beautiful design…)
Our software consist mostly of functions serving as our states. Each function operates the push button inputs and their corresponding Servo outputs. The most difficult challenge was learning how to program the continuous rotation servos individually and then tell them to spin in the same direction a the servo adjacent to it if the correct button was pressed. However, once we constructed the function for one correctly, the code wrote itself.