It’s always been hard to make tangible art when it’s purely handmade. It’s an incredibly detailed yet very painstaking process. Well alright, then we can get those machines that make art for you or do 3D printing, right? But those cost so much that you’ll be rethinking whether you actually need them and most of them are for small-scale projects only. So how about a robot that has speed, accuracy, is low-cost, and large-scale?
Let me present to you “Utensil: One Robot That Does It All”. It is a wall-mountable multifunctional robot that can use a variety of tools to make t-shirts, art, and much more. You just load a fabric marker into it, connect your design, and off it goes. You can use it for making custom designs on your t-shirt, and create art or posters on all sorts of media (paper, whiteboard, canvas, etc.).
But that isn’t all it could do. It can hold a variety of tools, so you can also do laser cutting, engraving, and even milling. Just put in the right device and medium and let Utensil work for you. And because of its remote, programmable multi-axis, you can also use it for motion control of your webcams. The possibilities are truly endless!
So how does all of this technology actually work for you? It started when James Penn, the creator of Utensil, built a prototype of a positioning system with a moving beam. Next, he wanted something that could work with different tools and could do slow, heavy duty work just like milling or high-speed light-duty tasks like drawing. But Penn also wanted a machine that was big enough for t-shirts, posters, or milling signs. This is where he ran into a problem.
If he were to increase the size of his prototype, whenever it had to do heavy duty work the beam would bend as it increased in length and showed poor results. But if he were to increase the size of the beam, the machine would be too heavy and take too long to finish projects. One solution could be to change the materials and make a stronger beam, but this is where the cost also takes a hike.
So what does utensil really have in store for all of these problems? Utensil works with a series of cables that create an incredibly stiff but still lightweight machine. It also puts sensors on both sides to ensure accuracy for both light and heavy-duty work. Thanks to this unique technology, Utensil is ready to help you with your designs.
Utensil is now on Kickstarter. Tell me what you think about this project in the comments down below.
YouTube: Utensil: A Wall-mountable, Multifunctional Robot That Makes T-shirts, Art, and More
Photo credit: James Penn
Editorial notice: The copy was slightly amended on the 30th of March, 2018, to fix some grammar.