Cheekymandos – TechMech

I need to work on lighting... Pretty much all these photos were taken under the same circumstances, and the brightness is all over the place.


This… may have been the most fun Cheekymando project to create.  While inspiration for this did not come directly from an old GI Joe vehicle, nothing captures my imagination quite like a hulking, piloted robot.  This was essentially inevitable.  My favorite part about this design:

The. Limbs. Are. Modular.

They were the first section tackled, and for simplicity, were developed so that all four limbs use the same six components in different configurations (plus hand/foot terminations).  I’m quite pleased with how they turned out aesthetically and functionally.  The TM-UpperCover and TM-LowerCover parts work with the DMD-Socket parts to achieve a solid rigidity and smooth ball/socket joints.

They’re pretty versatile too.  I mean, if you want, you could slim down the amount of printing you need to do, and end up with something like a low-rent AT-ST or Bubble Walker:

Hahaha... Oh man I was so amused with myself when I was playing around with the final parts.

Also, if you’ve been looking to create something with ball/socket joints and like what I’ve started here, you can download the Fusion 360 file for the joints HERE.

Parts List:

Missile Launcher – Dragon Mountain Design (X1… or X2)

Helpful Tools:

3D Printer (or printing service)

E6000 Glue

  1. Print out Parts

    Files can be found on Thingiverse, YouMagine, Cults3D, and MyMiniFactory.

    4/11/2018 UPDATE:  Consolidating the number of places hosting the files.  More changes to come, but they’re still available for free.

    March 2020 UPDATE: Files can be downloaded directly from this site at the bottom of the page.  They are also available on Prusa Printers!

    Material: Ninjaflex Semiflex for DMD-Socket, PLA for everything else.
    Infill: 20%
    Brim: Recommended for DMD-Ball and TM-Fist.
    Supports: Not necessary, but may provide better results on DMD-Ball and TM-Fist.

    TM-Blaster had gotten glued up before this photo... whoops.

    In the end, you’ll have:

    DMD-Ball X4
    DMD-Socket X8
    TM-Cockpit X1
    TM-Canopy X1
    TM-Hips X1
    TM-Limb X4
    TM-UpperCover X4
    TM-LowerCover X4
    TM-Fist X2
    TM-Foot X2
    TM-Blaster X1 (or X2.  It’s up to you)

  2. Assemble Limbs

    Fit DMD-Socket into each end of TM-Limb.  Do this four times.

    This would probably look pretty rad in red and blue.

    Slide TM-UpperCover and TM-LowerCover over the assembled limbs in two left/right sets as shown.

    Subtle freedom.

  3. Terminate Limbs

    Each left/right set of limbs should get either feet or hands.  The best way to fit the balls into the sockets is to ease them in by pivoting the ball joints as you apply pressure.

    Look at that beefy arm.

    I was pretty indecisive on how to design the feet. I'm glad I took the time to get to this point.

  4. Assemble Cockpit

    TM-Canopy snaps right onto TM-Cockpit, and locks into the “closed” position so it’s not flopping around all the time.

    I thought about adding some more internal details, but figured the design was already busy enough.

    I thought the tick-marks on the side were a nice touch though.

  5. Ball Joints

    Press-fit DMD-Ball into the corresponding parts of TM-Cockpit and TM-Hips.  Use some E6000 glue if necessary.

    Accidental Iron Man from the back there.

  6. Attach Limbs

    Apply the same procedure of easing the sockets over the balls by pivoting them back and forth while applying pressure.

    The fists were originally closed.. They looked like hex nuts attached to arms.

    Hips don't lie.

  7. Connect Top to Bottom

    Press-fit the TM-Hips assembly into the slot in the TM-Cockpit assembly.  Use some E6000 glue if necessary.

    TM-LowerCover went through a bunch of iterations too. Many of them lost tension or broke. These have been great so far.

  8. Weaponize

    Press-fit DMD-MissileLauncher into TM-Blaster.  Use E6000 glue if necessary.

    Thinking about building a holster for these somehow as an expansion.

  9. Be a Good Mission...Guy...

    As with all the Cheekymandos projects, a variety of action figures can pilot the TechMech.

    My daughter calls this, "Robot Monkey." No more size judgements here...

This about concludes Cheekymandos Series 1!  I’ve had a lot of fun with these projects, I hope they’ve brought you some enjoyment, and I’m kicking around a possible Series 2 in my head.

Maybe… We’ll see…

Anyway, like what you see here? Follow me on Twitter @DragonMtnDesign for updates and previews and whatnot.

Also, the project sabbatical starts now!  My wife and I welcomed our son to the world just as the final parts for the TechMech came off the printer.




March 2020 UPDATE:  Files are available here!  Click the Download button below for a zip file.

Files are available under the Creative Commons BY-NC-SA license.

License Deed

Legal Code

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