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r/c bowling ball

Covert remote commanded spherical instrument of enhanced pin destabilisation
  [vote for,

This looks like a regular bowling ball, yet inside there hides a radio-control mechanism allowing you, the directionally-challenged bowler, a chance to get a strike or three.

Inside, there is a horizontal rod in the middle that's attached to the left and right sides, with a weight hanging from the rod. The weight can rotate freely relative to the ball, but can't slip along the rod; it can however pivot near where the weight joins the rod, and this pivoting is controlled by a servo motor. The weight consists of the servo, radio gear, and battery.

The sneaky bowler hiffs the ball in the conventional manner - using the thumb and finger holes which ensure that the ball is properly lined up. Then, under the pretext of trying to 'will' the ball to hit the pins - you know, the wild arm spasms people do - they surreptitiously control the ball with transmitter hidden on their person.

Optionally, the ball could be fitted with a cog on the rod and a motor on the weight and be able to drive itself unassisted - great for those who normally take more than one push to get the ball to the other end of the lane.

benjamin, Oct 26 2003

(?) Diagram http://ozdev.addr.com/misc/rcball.jpg
Hopefully this makes it clear [benjamin, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

spherical mobile robot. http://www.automati...cs/ball/ballrob.htm
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Oct 04 2004, last modified Jun 11 2005]

Liar's 8 Ball http://www.halfbake...Liar_92s_208_20Ball
Idea with a similar design, but entirely different purpose [krelnik, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]


       //great for those who normally take more than one push to get the ball to the other end of the lane// its been a while - how does this work exactly?
po, Oct 26 2003


       My friend and I spent many a minute contemplating such a bowling ball design after a lengthy discussion of our ideas for building a spherical BattleBot. The topic simply drifted into bowling.   

       The idea is nice, yes. However, it may be more difficult to control the direction of a rolling bowling ball than thought.   

       In order for your rod-with-a-weight idea to work properly, the outer shell of the ball would need to be considerably lighter than the weight hanging from the rod. Otherwise, it simply would not move the ball enough in time. Such a weighted ball would then be considerably more difficult to throw accurately. Because of this, you would need to have enough force within the ball itself to adequately adjust the direction of the ball enough to compensate for the lack of accuracy caused by the ball's initial offset.   

       Consider the alternative, though much more complex:   

       The bowling ball shell would consist of many panels rather than a solid shell. These panels could easily be hidden within graphics on the ball. Behind each panel is a tiny pneumatic ram, which, when triggered, punch the panel outward a couple a few inches (or the maximum length possible, allowing space for the mechanics within the ball), then retracting again.   

       Each panel will also have its own trigger. When sudden pressure is applied inward on the panel, this will trigger other pneumatic rams.   

       The triggering of the rams is vital. To describe this, I will use the axes: X, Y, and Z. These axes will be relative to the direction the ball is travelling, X being left to right of the ball, Y being front to back of ball (the direction it is moving would be the front), and Z being top to bottom. Also, a gyro will be needed in the center of the ball in order to define the axes.   

       When the ball hits a pin, it will hit on the Y axis (the front of the ball). That will then provide enough pressure to activate that panel's trigger. This trigger will then activate the two pneumatic rams on each end of the X axis, firing the rams out on each side. The gyro keeps the rams on the Z axis from firing OR triggering.   

       When the rams deploy, the extra couple of inches the ball will momentarily gain in width area could easily maximize the number of pins disturbed by the ball's path of travel.   

       Because the gyro will be defining the axes on which the rams reside, it will not matter how the ball rolls or where the ball comes into contact with the pin. No matter which panel the pin hits, only the corresponding rams will deploy.   

       As either an alternative or added feature, the ball could (and should) be equipped with a remote controlled triggering and on/off device. This way, the X axis rams could be triggered manually if preferred and all triggers can be disabled so as to avoid triggering during the return process (thus getting stuck in the ball return chute).   


       ok so maybe i got carried away. I suppose I began to drift onto something that might be considered a 'borderline AI bowling ball" :)
verTigo, Oct 26 2003

       Baked? [Link]   

       [vert] - your novel is interesting, tho I suspect would be a lil too noisy for a bowling ball application. [2 fries]' 3-axis weight robot link looks very elegant. I want one :)
benjamin, Oct 26 2003

       I could've used this as a child. Bowling once at the age of 7, I once rolled the ball so slowly that it struck a pin, turned around, and came back to me in the gutter.
RayfordSteele, Oct 27 2003


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