Monday, March 9, 2009

Versic 1.5 (?)

Is our notes out of order? Possibly. Are the notes still valid though? Yep! Here are some notes about our Versic car 1.5:

The purpose and goal for our car is to travel a distance of 5m

1 shoebox
18 straws
A pair of toy truck wheels
1 glue gun
Two 12-inch size balloons

The way we planned to make our balloon car was out of Styrofoam. However, it did not really work due to the size of our wheels used (we only had 1 pair of wheels). What we also found difficult was mounting the balloon onto the car
We drew up a few models and designs for Versic Car 1.5. However, we did not make them due to the size of the wheels we had and the struggle to find a way to attach the balloon. Therefore, we decided to see what ideas we were able to cook up from other people’s sites, pictures of cars, and other balloon cars we saw. There were some ideas that we liked and disliked about other cars we saw, but still struggled trying to design the car on paper. Eventually, we just decided to find other materials we had in the house, and play around with them to make a structure and body for our car, which would be light enough to move the air being shot out of the balloon so that it would travel 5m.
Another idea that came to mind was surrounding the balloon with straws by taping it. After that was done, we would use a glue gun to attach the straw surrounding the balloon to the ca.
What we finally realize was that we need some sort of compartment to attach to the car and hold down the balloon.

as we were building the model of the car, we struggled to find a way on how we can attach the balloon to the car so that the balloon wouldn’t be touching the ground and so that the balloon wouldn’t fall off
Surprisingly our car looked somewhat like the blueprints. But some of the new things we added to the design made it look a lot different because of how we played around with our ideas and materials we thought would be useful
Even though we had the model of the car finished, we still met the same problem we had with our first few designs and that was how we were going to attach the balloon to the car. We tried multiple ways on how to get that balloon to stick to the car. We tried just taping the balloon to the top. Sadly, when we tested it, the balloon went flying off. I suggested the idea to buy a different shaped balloon that was skinnier. We were able to tape it down to the car, however the force of air coming out of the car, result in the car losing speed, power, time and distance.
Our excitement was crushed when the car was unable to reach the 5m mark, only hitting a maximum distance of 4.7m. There were some minor problems found with the car, such as the wheel alignment and some bodywork. However, the minor adjustments that were made had little impact on how the car traveled.

Versic car 1.5 did not work because...
we were not able to find a way to attach the balloon so that we would reach the 5m mark.
wheels were not properly attached
body could have been built better (e.g. the body was not straight due to the way we cut it)

Designing and building a car takes a lot of time, effort and focus. There a few that must take place for the car to be successful, preparation of materials, measurements, assembly and trials and error. However the key to making all of these steps work is being precise with these steps.

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