Experimenting with Bionicle parts

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Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Wordman » Tue May 01, 2012 7:04 pm

I found a couple of old Bionicle sets (Kopaka, Lewa) and decided to run some experiments to see what kind of frames could be made from some of their parts. The key seems to be to make use of the "fractal scaling" that LEGO builds into some of their parts, where something that looks like one thing at a certain scale might look like something totally different when viewed as part of a different scale. So, for example, the foot of a Bionicle forms the whole torso of a frame.

The next few posts detail three basic frames that came out of my tinkering, with some variants of the first one. I have LDraw files for some, but need to raid the unofficial parts section of the LDraw site to see if parts exist to build the others. All photos link to Flickr, where more angles of the same model can be found.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Wordman » Tue May 01, 2012 7:04 pm

First up is the most promising, because it is both versatile and not particularly complex. It makes use of part 60176 "Technic, Axle Connector 2 x 3 with Ball Socket, Closed Sides, Squared Ends" as the main body, connected to two 32506 "Bionicle Claw with Axle" for some insect legs. This provides a pretty solid platform with a decent array of connection points.

The red crawler is the most basic, with double defense and double direct. It's heavy armor weighs it down, so its fancy legs don't provide any mobility bonus:

Image
crawler-red iso by wordmanward, on Flickr
d6Rd d6Rd d8Rd d6B d6B
.ldr file

The green crawler is a bit trickier on the bottom, as I couldn't fit the bits that I wanted on the top. In the ldraw file, I couldn't find the part I used for the "head" (actually a bionicle shoulder), so the place where it would go is marked by a red axle.

Image
crawler-green iso by wordmanward, on Flickr
d6Ra d6Ra d8Ra d6Y d6G
.ldr file

The yellow crawler cheats a little. Part of the experiment was to use some of the ball and socket pieces for joints. Not the big 2x2 Bionicle versions, but the 1x1 ball connections. They provide a great range of motion for things like hip joints. Unfortunately, they do not provide friction. I had to cheat by putting some plastic wrap inside the joint holding the gun. This works, though purists may scoff.

Image
crawler-yellow iso by wordmanward, on Flickr
d6Ra d6Ra d6Y d6Y d6G
.ldr file
Last edited by Wordman on Thu May 03, 2012 5:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Wordman » Tue May 01, 2012 7:05 pm

Next, a complex, four-leg walker build around a Big Friggin' Gun. A 32475 "Bionicle Foot with Ball Joint Socket 3 x 6 x 2 1/3" forms the body, with a number of places to hook limbs. Honestly, these didn't work as well as I'd hoped, not providing much friction, so any time you move it you have to readjust stuff. If the legs look impossible, realize that they have light saber blades at their core.

Image
white-walker iso by wordmanward, on Flickr
d6Rd d6Rd d6Ra d6Ra d6Y d6G
No .ldr file yet
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Wordman » Tue May 01, 2012 7:05 pm

Last, I really didn't mean to make a Marauder (or whatever the cool kids call it). I really didn't. Much less a chibi version of one. That's what I ended up with, though. Same foot part as the previous frame, with some better use of the big ball socket.

Image
maroon-walker iso by wordmanward, on Flickr
d6Rd d6Rd d8Rd d6Ra d6Ra d6G
No .ldr file yet
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby schoon » Tue May 01, 2012 10:02 pm

Wordman wrote:The yellow crawler cheats a little. Part of the experiment was to use some of the ball and socket pieces for joints. Not the big 2x2 Bionicle versions, but the 1x1 ball connections. They provide a great range of motion for things like hip joints. Unfortunately, they do not provide friction. I had to cheat by putting some plastic wrap inside the joint holding the gun. This works, though purists may scoff.

If you counterbalance the weapon - by giving it a big stock or magazine - so that the ball is also the center of gravity, you might have better luck with the tricky connection...

The "yellow" is my favorite of the group!
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby BigPappyJ » Tue May 01, 2012 10:45 pm

Agree with Schoon, Yellow is pretty darn sweet. Nicely done.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Mantisking » Tue May 01, 2012 11:59 pm

Wordman wrote:Next, a complex, four-leg walker build around a Big Friggin' Gun. A 32475 "Bionicle Foot with Ball Joint Socket 3 x 6 x 2 1/3" forms the body, with a number of places to hook limbs. Honestly, these didn't work as well as I'd hoped, not providing much friction, so any time you move it you have to readjust stuff. If the legs look impossible, realize that they have light saber blades at their core.

I've used the feet too. Although, actually as feet.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby The Trilobite » Wed May 02, 2012 1:10 am

The yellow crawler has a nice, cohesive look, and your Marauder-type looks good too. Thanks for sharing the process--this'll help me avoid some of the error part of trial-and.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Wordman » Thu May 03, 2012 5:03 pm

schoon wrote:If you counterbalance the weapon - by giving it a big stock or magazine - so that the ball is also the center of gravity, you might have better luck with the tricky connection...

It actually balances OK as is. It just can be "aimed" a lot better with a bit more friction.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Wordman » Thu May 03, 2012 5:04 pm

Mantisking wrote:I've used the feet too. Although, actually as feet.

Love it. Actually might look even better with the slightly smaller version of those feet. The pointed toes would work great in the orientation of your model.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Mantisking » Thu May 03, 2012 7:12 pm

Mantisking wrote:I've used the feet too. Although, actually as feet.

Wordman wrote:Love it.

Thanks!

Wordman wrote:Actually might look even better with the slightly smaller version of those feet. The pointed toes would work great in the orientation of your model.

I'll have to track down a set and build a "baby brother" version.

I've experimented with other Bionicle parts here, here, here, here, and in a few other builds.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Thark Warrior » Wed May 09, 2012 1:32 am

Wordman wrote:Last, I really didn't mean to make a Marauder (or whatever the cool kids call it). I really didn't. Much less a chibi version of one. That's what I ended up with, though. Same foot part as the previous frame, with some better use of the big ball socket.


The "cool kids" call it a Roiquonmi Glaug Zentraedi Officer Combat BattlePod
:D

But hey I like what you are doing. I have a bucket of bionicle bit under my lego table. I'll have to get them out and see what I can do with them.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Mantisking » Wed May 09, 2012 11:26 pm

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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Dukayn » Wed May 09, 2012 11:33 pm

That's tight.
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Mantisking » Thu May 10, 2012 9:31 am

Dukayn wrote:That's tight.

Are you talking about mine or his?
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Re: Experimenting with Bionicle parts

Postby Dukayn » Thu May 10, 2012 4:51 pm

Yours :-)
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