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How we made Kitronik :CITY - BETT 2019 Part 1

We had a great time at BETT 2019, and loved the feedback on our microbit Kitronik :CITY display! This week we’ll be showing a behind the scenes of how we made it and how you can make each building on the layout for yourself.

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 Stall

 

The Concept

The idea started as we designed our new range of :CITY small accessories for the BBC micro:bit, including the STOP:bit traffic light and ACCESS:bit barrier. We wanted a fun way to show them off working together in a street setting. The initial phase of making rough sketches opened up lots of ideas for layouts and features.

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 sketch

As more buildings appeared on the street we started adding more of our micro:bit accessories, and the idea snowballed from there. One early design of the full layout included a train and even a mini piano bar!

 

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 sketch 2

We settled on this layout with seven buildings each featuring a different microbit accessory, with :MOVE minis running on the roads using their line following feature.

 

Artwork

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 art

The design process for the artwork that covers the buildings and table started with some mood boarding. We wanted a bright “cartoony” look that kept the instantly recognisable skyline of London.

 

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 map

The top sheet that covers the 6x4 foot table is a massive single piece. This artwork also inspired a smaller A3 sized layout that will be available soon, but if you happen to have an enormous printer (as one does) you can use this for inspiration on your own layout.

 

 

How we made the microbit Kitronik :CITY - BETT 2019: 

 

Move Mini Garage

Other than the stadium, all of the buildings are laser cut from 3mm MDF, with artwork printed on A4 paper. We kept this simple building empty as a place to store spare batteries and a few tools, but it also makes a good guide for help with some of the other buildings.

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 garage

 

You will need:

To make this building, start by downloading the three laser DXF files. You will need to cut two of each panel, it will also be helpful to mark each panel as they can look quite similar.

 

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 mdf

We then used hot glue to assemble the sides. Be sure not to stick the bottom panel on these buildings to allow access to the inside. Hold the panels together then run the glue gun along the seam for the best fit.

 

microbit kitronik :city bett 2019 print

Now, download the PDF file and print the side panel artwork. There are a few ways to attach the artwork, we used double-sided tape after trimming the pieces to size. If you have a good craft knife a great method is to stick it with paper to spare, then trim off the excess using the edge of the MDF as a guide.

The only addition we made to this building was a leaflet stand on the roof.

 

 

Kitronik :CITY Resources:

Our Kitronik :CITY stand attracted a lot of attention at BETT 2019. Many of our visitors also expressed a desire to make something similar once they returned to their schools. We decided to help out by producing the guides below. Each part of the :CITY has its own guide and each guide has all of the files, code and also instructions included. Additionally, if you or your students tackle any of the builds below then we would love to see the pictures. With your permission, we would also like to feature them in the Gallery ([email protected]).

Make A microbit Controlled Kitronik :CITY:
Kitronik :CITY Part 1 - Laser Cut :MOVE Mini Garage.

Learn How!
Kitronik :CITY Part 2 - :MOVE Mini Football Stadium.

Learn How!
Kitronik :CITY Part 3 - Klimate, microbit & ZIP Halo Big Ben.

Learn How!
Kitronik :CITY Part 4 - Servo Driver Board Tower Bridge.

Learn How!
Kitronik :CITY Part 5 - Robotics Board London Eye & Turbine.

Learn How!

 

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