The Lego


The VCR is controlled by the Lego MindStorms Robotics Invention System. It
has a motorized top-loading deck, working tape reel drive and IR remote control.

The VCR, with a tape protruding from the deck

The deck accepts a cassette that holds two reels of (imaginary) tape.
Beta, VHS and now Technic.    :-)

The tape, which actually loads with the studs facing down

The hardest part of building the VCR was keeping the height to a minimum, otherwise it would
look out of proportion compared to the tape. The gearing for the tape drive is a bit of a squeeze,
but it fits. Making it a top-loader also saves some height.

More photos of the VCR:
The VCR with the deck removed The dark grey gears are the hubs that turn the tape reels The touch switches sense the position of the deck, which is driven up and down by the 8-tooth gears
The tape being lowered onto the hubs, seen cutaway from below, nearly engaged The tape in the deck, the reels engaged with the hubs The top of the deck has a cutout to show the reels turning
The deck, with the top surface removed.  It has to load the tape without striking the hubs The top of the tape, showing how the reels are held in The bottom of the tape, with more pieces removed to show the smooth plates that hold the reels

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Copyright © 1999 Ben Williamson