A LEGO CNC Pixel Art Generator

If you are ever lucky enough to make the trip to Billund in Denmark, home of LEGO, you can have your portrait taken and rendered in the plastic bricks as pixel art. Having seen that on our travels we were especially interested to watch [Creative Mindstorms]’ video doing something very similar using an entirely LEGO-built machine but taking the images from an AI image generator.

The basic operation of the machine is akin to that of a pick-and-place machine, and despite the relatively large size of a small LEGO square it still has to place at a surprisingly high resolution. This it achieves through the use of a LEGO lead screw for the Y axis and a rack and pinon for the X axis, each driven by a single motor.

The Z axis in this machine simply has to pick up and release a piece, something solved with a little ingenuity, while the magazine of “pixels” was adapted with lower friction from another maker’s design. The software is all written in Python, and takes input from end stop switches to position the machine.

We like this build, and we can appreciate the quantity of work that must have gone into it. If you’re a LEGO fan and can manage the trip to Billund, there’s plenty of other LEGO goodness to see there.

2 thoughts on “A LEGO CNC Pixel Art Generator

  1. Sweet…

    Now make the canvas flexible in at least one dimension (like a wide paper loop) and build a scrollable lego colour graphics terminal. YAYYYY….

    Ok. Some research needed to make that silent enough. I remember the KSR33 days good enough, so I definitely do not need to relive that level of noise while trying to focus on coding…

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