Creating a Dalek
The Fairfax Dalek started out in 2013 with our First Lego League team wanting to have a Dalek in our local town parade. He was originally was created with mostly recycled parts and promptly broke down part way through the parade. Over the years he has acquired his own Dalek Facebook page. This began a long journey to today with many Maker Faires (His last one was in 2018), science fairs, maker popups, and making many friends ( but don’t tell him ) along the way.
The Dalek has been the Design Process (Design, Build, Test, Rebuild) in action. From getting him working after breaking down at the Fairfax parade to ripping a large portion of wiring at a North Bay science faire, he has tested our skills and persistence. Along the way, he became a member of the family.
When the project started out, I wanted him to be different from most Dalek and made him remote controlled as opposed to sitting inside him. He has mecanum wheels which allow him to move forwards, backwards and sideways. The eyestalk could move up and down and the head could rotate. He had an arduino with sound board to allow us to play back sound clip through an on board amplifier by triggering them with a remote controller. ( His favorite word is “Exterminate!!! )
The Dalek has been an integral part of our maker community. A robotics teammate, Max, made it up from UC Santa Cruz to help us out at the 2018 Maker Faire. Max had been with us from middle school days on through Vex Robotics in high school and received his degree in Computer Science.
When we heard that Maker Faire was starting up again, Nick and I pulled him out of his trailer and started to assess him. We decided to rebuild him with some other the things we had thought of over the years. Some of the ideas included adding wireless microphone with sound changer, motorizing the weapon so it can move, and adding an iris to the eye to give a little more personality.
Nick had recently graduated from Cal Poly in Electrical Engineering so he has taken on building up the voice changer system. I have started on the 3D printing the iris and are working out our plans for the rest of his improvements.
Follow along on our Dalek Build V2.0 blog page.