Building the B9 Robot Collar
I glued my collar template to a piece of poplar plywood and cut it out using my jig saw. I then glued the outside piece to a piece of wood and attached a knob to the inside template piece. I used a template I found on one of the many B9 web sites I visited. It is supposed to be a tracing of the original Collar rib.
I cut the 1/4 inch plastic rod into 9 1/2 inch lengths (well I had cut one to this length at this point). I heated it in the toaster oven at 300 degrees for about 6 1/2 minutes. I put it in the jig and boom, my first collar piece. Cool! One down, 107 to
Here's what happens when you mold ribs while trying to pay attention to your daughter as she practices her oral book report in the kitchen. This rib saw 350 deg. for about 8 minutes. It starts forming bubbles inside the plastic and they bubble to the surface. It's pretty cool looking, but not very useable. I was still experimenting to find the best temp/time combo.
I have about 84 collar ribs completed at this point. I stacked them in sets of five for easier counting. This was my close-up "artsy-fartsy" shot. I finally finished all of my ribs. It took about 5 hours total spread over two weekends.
I cut the support rings out of 1/4 inch acrylic. I tried several ways of cutting a circle. I finally settled on the method pictured. I bought the Multipurpose Cutting Kit for my Dremel tool. This kits includes a general purpose cutting bit that is similar to those used in the "Rotozip". It cuts from the side. I also used my Router Attachment which allows you to cut circles. The two metal rods were not long enough for the size circles I needed to cut so I cut two longer rods from 1/4 steel rod stock and inserted those into where the original shorter ones were.
Here is my set-up for cutting the inside circle. I cut all the outside circles first. Then setup my Dremel Tool once and cut all the inside circles so that they would all be identical. I was surprised at how well the cutting bit cut the plastic..
I glue the rest in place and added some tape to keep them from moving. It took a few hours start to finish. I let it set overnight. Making the collar is one of the most rewarding parts of building the B9 Robot.
Here's the rest of the collar insert. This will prevent you from looking inside the collar and this is where Bob May's head would be (had I used Bob instead of the electronics). I heated the piece in my over for about 2 minutes at 200 deg. F and formed it around a popcorn tin. I used my daughter's electric hair straightener (don't tell her) to put the flat hooks on the two ends. These hooks hold it in place when put inside the collar.