Acrylic Penny Maze
So, I made the simple Cardboard Penny Maze.

But, it wasn't quite enough.

Enter the laser cutter...

Step 1: Planning

Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Planning started the old-fashioned way, with pencil and paper.

I worked on squared paper, planning routes up and down through five layers. I exploited the squares' size to plan 20mm channels, allowing both one cent and one penny coins to be used in the maze.

I then scanned the sketches into PDF files, and used InkScape to "draw over" the PDFs, and save the digital versions as DXF files.
Acrylic Penny Maze
Penny maze sketches.pdf158 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 06 bottom skin.dxf13 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 01 levels 1 and 2.dxf36 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 02 levels 3 and 4.dxf38 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 03 level 5 and top skin.dxf26 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 04 separaters 1-2 and 2-3.dxf28 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 05 separaters 3-4 and 4-5.dxf29 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Penny maze sketches 2.pdf111 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 01 levels 1 and 2.pdf11 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 02 levels 3 and 4.pdf11 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 03 level 5 and top skin.pdf15 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 04 separaters 1-2 and 2-3.pdf11 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 05 separaters 3-4 and 4-5.pdf11 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Kiteman Penny Maze 06 bottom skin.pdf12 KB
Acrylic Penny Maze
Penny maze sketches.pdf158 KB

Step 2: Cutting

Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
The path sections of the maze were made from 3/16 inch clear acrylic, and the separating layers were cut from 1/8 inch clear acrylic.

The former was the closest available thickness that would allow the coins to move freely, the latter was the thinnest acrylic available, to keep the bulk of the maze down a little, and to stop coins falling at an odd angle and getting stuck.

I used an Epilog laser cutter, at the setting recommended by the operating manual for the materials.

I left the protective film on the acrylic during cutting.

Step 3: Assembly

Acrylic Penny Maze
I popped out the off-cuts, and peeled off the protective film before arranging the layers in order and bolting them together.

A word of warning: if you are using my files, check the bolt-hole alignment - as a result of them being basically hand-drawn, some of the holes needed a quick go with a dremel to round them off and line them up.

It is important that I held the layers together with bolts, rather than adhesive, because the square section in the lower layers is a trap - if your penny ends up in there, you have failed, and can only get your money back by dismantling the maze.

Cheat.

Step 4: Does it work?

Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Acrylic Penny Maze
Did it work?

Did it distract people around the office from their proper work?

Did it cause fascination and frustration in equal measure?

Did it distract Conker-X from his computer?

Yes!

This was a fun project - I need to think of an excuse to use laser cutters again!
 
 

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