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Craig R. ( B9-0032 )



I knew from the first moment I saw them, that the beautiful laser cut steel treadsections made by Scott Sanderson were exactly what my robot needed. They were steel like the originals, and would provide a good heavy base for my costume robot. Not to mention the awesome quality. I bought Scott's "kit" version which meant he welded them together, then I had to do all the grinding, and finishing work. Because I live relatively close, Scott offered to let me do the grinding in his garage, so I went off to Cleveland and told my wife I would be home by dinner time.

I ended up spending the entire weekend in his garage!  It was A LOT of work! Here we are lining up to weld on the real working hinges.

Danger! Danger! Yes, they fit! Thanks Scott!

Now, back in my garage, its time for the finer finishing work. Scott welded some steel into the top corners of the tread openings so I could grind in the radius details with my Dremel. Again, a lot of work!

I wanted to get all the details right on my treadsections and I studied photos very closely. One thing I noticed was that there were not sharp corners on the originals and the inside corner where the "step" meets the side, is a nice rounded cove. I had Scott add some extra welds there, covered them up with Bondo, and sanded them to a nice smooth radius.

Another detail I noticed on the original robot was that the upper wheels seemed to be higher than what is specified in the original Studio blueprints. The original builders put the upper wheels much higher than where they are in the studio prints, and the treads were right up at the very top of the openings. I really wanted to add this detail, but Scott's treadsections (as well as almost every other treadsection made since the originals) were made using the studio blueprints. This meant that I very carefully had to re drill all the upper holes 11/16" higher, and close in all the old holes. I think Scott thought I was nuts when I asked him to weld in all the upper holes! This picture shows a wheel in the relocated holes.

This shows the jig I made to trim the side panels. It is simply a scrap piece of 3/4" plywood that has a slit cut for the table saw blade. The slit is wide enough to allow some adjustment. This made it very quick work to trim the panels. The corners were sanded round with my stationary belt sander.

I trimmed the panels so they were shy of the treadsection edges about 1/16" to 1/8". This is how the original panels were, plus it prevents the edges of the panel from getting snagged. I decided to attach the side panels with tiny 4-40 flat head machine screws, 13 on each panel. Lucky for me my drill press was large enough to handle the task! Tapping the holes was the real fun though!

Finally, all primed and ready for the paint shop! All in all, I spent two full 15 hour days on EACH treadsection to do the finishing work.

Here they are in the paint shop. They do have a texture on them, but its hard to see in the picture. The texture is a spray on textured paint called SEM Texture Coating 39853. The silver is a color to match Duplicolor T229 SilverM.

Here I'm doing the final assembly and putting on the wheels and treads. The wheels are CNC machined solid aluminum, and the treads are real rubber treads by Norman Sockwell.

The Finished product!


This shows the modified power connector on the back. My power supply and sound source are located outside of my robot.


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