Robot, Build Thyself: Machine Made of Lego Builds Models Made of Lego

DiscoblogBy Jennifer WelshOct 21, 2010 10:52 PM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

3D printers are beloved by geeks the world over. Enter the Lego 3D printer: it's not only MADE of Legos, but it also PRINTS with Legos. With only a few tweaks, this LegoBot could even take over the world print copies of itself, maker Will Gorman told Wired:

“There is a recursiveness to this whole thing,” says Gorman.

“I love the idea of self-assembly and the Star Trek replicator and I love Legos,” he says. “I wanted to bring those two worlds together."

Gorman built this recursive masterpiece for the LegoWorld expo

, happening from Oct 22th to 26th in the Netherlands. Dutch lego enthusiasts can visit the expo to see LegoBot in action, the rest of us can check out his website for detailed instructions

on how to build your own. Hit the jump for more info on his Lego-contraption and a video of it in action. For now, the bot requires a human operator to stack bricks into the feeder system and program it with a design from MLCad

(a computer-aided Lego designing program) through a PC, which determines the printout instructions. Currently the system uses only normal Lego bricks (not the Lego robotics NXT components

) in the 1×2, 2×2, 3×2, 4×2, and 8×2 sizes, and can print up to 12 bricks tall. The printer itself is made out of 2,400 bricks. Related content: Discoblog: Can Scientists Use a Printer to Create a Human Heart?

Science Not Fiction: I Have Seen the Furniture, and It Is Robotic

Science Not Fiction: Knight Rider: 3D Printing

Bad Astronomy: Smart girls at the party

Bad Astronomy: Compasskirt

Image: Will Gorman

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2023 Kalmbach Media Co.