Some projects begin with a reasonably basic concept that quickly devolves into a nightmare when it comes to implementation. Hacksmith Industries discovered this when they chose to create Megahex, a giant rideable hexapod.
The crew assumed they could simply weld six of them together and attach them to a controller after viewing a video of a miniature excavator that could move itself modest distances with its bucket. What began as a three-month endeavor swiftly became a year and a half of incremental advances that gave them just enough hope to keep going.
The project’s first month went just as planned. Princess Auto, which donated six excavators and an in-store spending budget, collaborated with the team. The initial concept was for a rectangle with six legs that could all perform the same motion. The only difference is the time at which the motion occurs.
However, that did not work, so the team decided on a hexagonal frame. Changing to this style of frame introduced a slew of complications. The joints and angles had to be extremely exact, and the motion of each leg had to be distinct. Oh boy! Things were becoming more complex. What was supposed to be a two-day welding project turned into a week-long headache. The YouTubers were already feeling dejected by the time they were ready to attach the legs to the frame.
Given how many pieces had to be replaced before the mech could move, this may be dubbed Theseus’ Hexapod. Despite the difficulties encountered in reaching the final output, the Megahex is an astounding structure. Forward motion and rotation on something with this many legs is an incredible feat.