A mouse trap car makes a fun toy for children of all ages, it a small self-powered and an all rounded fun toy. Given that it generates its own motive power, it features as the most common science project that is handed out to kids in different grades. While it features simple construction and materials, it can be quite the embarrassment if you cannot help your child to construct one.
Typically, a mousetrap car consists of, yes, a mouse trap that has been rigged on wheels and can move independently for a short distance – they have been known to move up to 138 feet. With this tutorial, you can create your very own do it yourself mouse trap car and watch the amusement of your little one as they amaze and agonize about how they work.
Step 1: Acquire a mouse trap and necessary equipment
While primarily powered by a trap, the mouse car plans vary greatly in their designs and configurations as well simplicity. If you want a wide range of designs and plans you can try this premium woodworking guide that features step by step guidance as well as instructional videos. Typically, the materials needed include a body framework, axle rods, wheel and a length of string. Let us begin building our mousetrap car.
Step 2: Cut the board to size
Cut the balsa board to the required sizes as outlined by the mouse car plan. There are to side rails and one deck top.
Step 3: Assemble the body
Glue the side board to the deck to using some strong wood glue to ensure that the mouse car project does not come apart while in motion. Ensure that the deck top is centrally located along the length of the side panels to ensure proper balance. Trading off balance severely affects the performance of the vehicle and compromises the distance it’s capable of covering.
Step 4: Prepare for axle attachment
Drill two quarter-inch holes at the end of each side panel about three quarters of an inch from either end.
Step 5: Attach the axle
Attach bronze axles through the side panels from one side to the other. Alternatively you can create your own wooden axles from small wooden planks – just be sure to adhere to the axle holes diameter. If unsure how to create the axles consult this comprehensive woodwork guides for step by step instruction and tutorials.
Next attach two small washers to the axle from the outer panels and then put on rubber spacers up against the washers while ensuring that the axle can move freely without getting stuck.
Step 6: Attach the wheels
There are broad varieties of wheel available but this model shall ride on the DVD spacers – the clear DVD’s that are found on each pack. Slip rubber spaces in the space at the middle of each DVD
and slip the wheel on the axles, and make sure they are very close to the ends. The mouse trap project frame should now roll freely on the four wheels.
Step 7: Get the mouse trap ready
The mouse trap requires a bit of modification to effectively power the mouse trap car project. Cut the mouse trap snappers arm at the corner at which the mouse trap spring is attached and remove the locking bar as well. Straighten the locking bar and slide it into the remaining bronze tube to create the level arm. Super glue the end loop to the tuber and ensure it is tight and firm.
Step 8: Join the lever arm to the mouse trap
Slide the bronze tube into the now straight snapper arm on the mouse trap and ensure it slide under the mouse trap spring at the base of the snapper.
Step 9: Join the mouse trap to the car frame work
Use some adhesive glue to attach the modified mouse trap at the back of the car frame work. The mouse trap should be attached about ten and a quarter inch front the front axle as the position of the trap is determined by the direction in which the snapper arm is pointed.
Step 10: Attach the drive mechanism
Attach a small zip tie to the middle of the drive axle, clip off the ends, and then glue it in place with superglue. Loop a fine string through the hoop at the end of the lever arm and tie the knot firm and tight. The knot should be strong enough to withstand the constant tension that results when the car is in motion.
Finally, fix the other end of the fine string on the zip tie in the middle of the drive axle and make sure it is firm and secure. The length should be just enough to reach it or just a fad shorter. Now your mouse car is ready to roll.
Here it is completely built.