Fab Academy 2017
Learn how to make ALMOST anything!

Mechanical and Machine Design


For this week's assignment, It was required to It was required to work as a team, design a machine (1st week) and Automate it (2nd week).


Our start:

To kick off with the the task, we had a long brainstorming session on what machine we can do. Our team has diverse backgrounds and interests, which actually made the brainstorming session interesting! :D

Several ideas were suggested.. like:

  • Coffee art machine.
  • Sand Art Machine, to perform somehting like This.
  • Drawing Machine, to perform something like This.
  • Farming Machine.
  • leather cutting machine (that uses a knife instead of laser, more like the vinyl cutter).


Problem Definition and decision:

To take the decision, we started looking around. We wanted to do the task and do something meaningful in same time.

Meanwhile, Our lab has a wide garden in the backyard that needs continous care whether seeding to plant or watering, yet nobody, out of busyness, is capable of handling it well. Moreover, people always look for how to water their plants while they are away; causing a real issue if they can't find someone who looks after them.

Our Backyard garden.

So, we decided to go for, Farming Machine.


Design Requirements:

Following the simple steps to design an Engineering project (in picture below), we tried to set the requirements for our machine. We came up with few for the prototype:

  • small size machine: about 30cm x 30cm.
  • Only X and Y axis movement(For simplicity in Control).
  • Integrates two end effectors in one (Watering and seeding).
  • Fast.
  • Acceptable accuracy in watering (the water can be in a circly of 2 cm diameter around the seed).

Design Steps.

Machine Modules:

For the machine, we divided the work between 5 main modules and assigned sub-teams to work on each module; These Modules are:

1. Chasé and machine base design.

2. End Effectors design.

3. Electronics and Programming (in the machine design week).

4. Fabrication, Assembly and testing (Done by the whole group).

5. Documentation and team follow up.


My Contribution:

So, for my part of the project, I participated in the following:

  • Coordinating meetings for brainstorming and organizing the work.
  • Design of the watering end effector.
  • Documentation of the work.


Designing :

For the design, I used Fusion 360. The structure was simple. It's a hollow ring with hole at the bottom to allow the water to gow through it and then water the seed.

For the water hose, we used a ready made design from thingiverse (For standarization), you can find it here. Yet, the connection between the 2 parts is yet to be made.

The simple sketch


Adding holes for the hose.

Final Part.


Implementation and Assembly of the machine:

After finalizing a great teamwork effort in designing, controlling and assembly, you can check our machine on our Lab Page.


Happy Farming! :)