I went to Maker Faire Bay Area 2009 and saw these cool little robots that held pens and drew lots of spirograph style drawings as it spun around. Unfortunately, I got distracted by something and forgot to go back to it.
I didn't get to go back to Maker Faire until just this last weekend. Fortunately, my daughter immediately caught sight of these robots and we built one together. It was a lot of fun to build with her and a lot of fun to watch in action.
A Spinbot is basically a tripod that has pens in place of two legs and a little motor with a rubber nub as the third leg. Start up the motor and set it spinning and drawing. It's a simple device, but a lot of fun to watch.
Here is Chris Myers' page on the Maker Faire website: makerfaire.com/pub/e/5241
And, here's Chris Myers' website with a few other pictures: isopoddesign.com/6.html
Chris' design uses lasercut acrylic pieces (some of which have been heated and bent), zip ties, double sided tape, and rubber bands to hold the pieces together. The heat-bending of the acrylic is necessary to give the flat pieces acrylic the ability to form a tripod.
After looking it over, I decided it could probably be made into a very printable form. This is my shot at it. Rather than creating a strict copy of Chris' work, I wanted to make a variation that would (a) be smaller (b) be printable in one piece and (c) enable to user to use fewer additional parts. One of the trade-offs is that I had to angle each of the legs at 45 degrees so I could avoid the use of support structures. The legs in Chris' designs appear to be at about a 30 degree angle.