Okay, okay, with COVID waning for now I am returning to some semblance of normality, which means building and blogging automata projects again after some absence.
The current project incorporates some bees, 11 of them to be exact. They are each about 4" long in size, but some are only partial bodies as they will be embedded in a comb. In the photo below you can see six bees under construction. They are made of basswood rather than tupelo which I often use because I wanted a little more strength to give strength to the leg joints.
The legs are made from 12 gauge copper wire. I wanted them to be bendable to configure to their placement on the comb. The thought of making more fragile wooden legs seemed more than my fat fingers and patience could handle, so I convinced myself of that I would apply the three foot rule and forego small detail on the legs. Similarly the antennae are made of brass rods brass to escape the wrath of little fingers.
All of the bees move of course; after all it is automata! The heads seen here either bob up and down, move side-to-side, or spin. The large abdomen on the right slides in and out of a comb cell. there will even bee wing flapping, yes you heard it here first! A prototype single cell structure is shown with the abdomen stuffed in it. More on the comb in a future blog.
So this is the start of things. I have a plan, believe it or not, and have some more photos and video to share later. In the meantime it is back to the bees...
Automata is a creative blend of my life interests , engineering, art and woodworking.