Create and Improve

Steps to make this product (also posted on Develop and Plan)

  1. Model the parts that need to be 3D printed. Send it to the 3D printing request site.
  2. Assemble the 3D printed parts.
  3. Stick horses on the roof and immobilize motor to pillar using a glue gun.
  4. Make lemon battery with copper strips, zinc strips, wires, and lemon.
  5. Connect lemon battery and motor.

1.  Model the parts that need to be 3D printed. Send it to the 3D printing request site.

Diagram of overall parts

Parts that need to be 3D modeled & printed:

roof, horses, base, pillar, and frame


1) Roof

Measurements: 12 x 12 x 2.5 (cm^3) [(length) x (width) x (height)]

The shape of roof is simply dodecagonal pyramid with a hole on the bottom-middle. The hole is for the pillar to be assembled.

2) Pillar

Measurements: 2.7 x 2.7 x 11.5 (cm^3)

The length and width of the pillar are accurately calculated in order to exactly fit the hole on the roof. Inside the pillar is hollow as my plan to immobilize motor together with pillar is to fill glue stick inside the pillar, heat up the shaft of the motor, and stick it to pillar.

3) Base

Measurements: 12 x 12 x 5 (cm^3)

Unlike the roof, base is designed with hexagonal shape, as dodecagonal column does not give space to make a hole to pull out the wires connected to motor. Every hole in this piece is precisely measured for motor. The cylinder hole is to grab motor and two square holes are for pulling out wires from the base. The rectangular hole on the cylinder is designed in order to connect wire to the bottom of motor where the parts that need connection are.

4) Horses

Measurements: Cannot be defined (Approximately, 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 (cm^3), including the height of long pole on its back)

Four pieces with same model were printed. They are the most complex pieces in this product. Due to its complexity and small size, few legs were broken while removing supports.

5) Frame

Measurements: 7.5 x 19.8 x 7.5 (cm^3)

Two hemisphere holes are designed to put lemon on it. They will hold the lemon juice being spilled on the floor. The parallel holes on the hemispheres are to put copper and aluminum strips. Thereby, the lemon battery device can be organized neatly.


2.  Assemble the 3D printed parts

Assemble plan 1) Roof + Pillar

When assembling the parts, accurate measurement was the most critical condition to success. I gave 1mm difference of thickness between the hole and the pillar. Fortunately, it fit so rightly that I did not need to advise design or put additional work.

Assemble plan 2) Base + Motor

This image clearly shows the usage of holes on the base. Also for this one, measurements should be precisely calculated for the hole that motor comes in. It worked well too.

Assemble plan 3) Assemble 1 + Assemble 2 + Horses

The horses are stuck with glue gun. However, since a glue gun also melted the roof, it led the bottom of the roof to be bumpy. The final step of carousel part was the most struggling section in manufacturing works. The reason is because the shaft of the motor should be placed on the center of the pillar exactly vertically. After I made first try, I acknowledged that without the condition, pillar will spin in an odd angle with gigantic vibration caused by unbalanced movements. At the end, I filled the pillar with glue stick, heated the shaft of motor, and used the heat to melt the glue stick. After glue stick cooled down, the shaft of the motor was fixed. It somehow worked, but it was not satisfying enough. Some minor rattling sound and movement were still observed.


3. Stick horses on the roof and immobilize motor to pillar using a glue gun.

Pillar + Roof + Horses

Bumpy bottom of the roof is shown on the image above. The image also shows two holes have identical size which allows them to be fit perfectly.

Pillar + Motor + Base

The actual process of using the holes on the base. All of them were designed carefully and thoughtfully in order to avoid re-printing pieces which takes considerably more time and resources.

4. Make lemon battery with copper strips, zinc strips, wires, and lemon.

Copper and aluminum should be connected, other two wires are connected to motor. That is how to create electric current flow by transforming potential energy from lemon pieces to electric energy. Detailed information about how lemon battery works in Define and Inquire.


5. Connect lemon battery and motor.

This is the end of making process. As I did not plan to make a switch, the device should operate when the wires are all connected. Whereas the photo above shows that the product is not working appropriately though every components are placed alright.



The device did not work. As the carousel worked well when powered by AA battery, the reasonable problem is on copper and aluminum strips or deficient power supply of lemon battery.


To be continued in Reflect and Share about why the device did not work.