Every year, the Extreme Redesign Challenge calls upon tomorrow’s engineers, artists and entrepreneurs to design a better future. It is a test to see who can come up with the most creative, mechanically sound, and realistically achievable design using 3D printing. Seven winners were selected and received scholarships for their efforts as well as features on our website and blog.
Paul Sperling is a sophomore at Newberg High School in Newberg, Oregon, and his entry, the Circular Centerpiece 3 x 3, in the Engineering: Secondary Education category of the Extreme Redesign Challenge. His entry is a testament to his commitment to speed cubing, a game that brings competitors together from all over the world. Paul’s entry would benefit players in the 3×3 category, helping to eliminate a variety of what might be perceived as speed reducing factors.
“In a normal Rubik’s cube there is this interface between a screw and a spring that has to spin, and every once in a while the spring will get caught on the screw and move, and ping back, making a distracting sound when you are solving.” Paul explained. This design features a circular-centerpiece that solves this problem simply by disconnecting the centerpiece from the face. The centerpiece is just a rotated profile, which allows the face to turn around it. The core has some prongs on it to make sure the centerpiece and the core don’t rotate relative to each other, while still letting the center slide out a little. Additionally, using Polyjet to print the redesigned cube would enable another seemingly minor irritation to be eliminated. “There are these sticker-less cubes on and they are nicer to use. You never catch a fingernail on a sticker in competition. Since the cube design is a little complicated, it’d be hard to print without soluble support material, and Polyjet is the only solution to that.” No matter what technology platform the final design is printed with Paul’s vision will bring the competitive advantage the speed cube market fans will embrace.