What is UberBlox™?
A whole new way of Making!UberBlox™ is a new high-quality modular metal construction set, prototyping, and machine building system for making rigid structures and automated machines.
At the heart of the system is a new single-connector locking mechanism which uses a common small tool to quickly and precisely lock each block to the next. The firmly connected blocks provide accurate, strong and rigid frames for a wide variety of structures and complex machines such as robots, CNC machines and 3D printers.
In addition to the basic blocks, the system includes a growing number of compatible and re-configurable parts, including moving components, sub-assemblies, motors, electronics and controllers based on popular boards such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi, for a complete solution to the building needs of today’s sophisticated maker.
Why Use UberBlox™?
Modular systems have the following benefits:
- they let you save in design time, as assemblies and modules are simply selected and used, eliminating the need for customizing and fabricating every part in your design.
- they let you modify or replace parts without changing anything else in your design.
- they enable quick and easy upgrades (driven by either technology or user improvement), thus enabling designs to evolve.
- they simplify the information processing in a design project.
- they enable faster, easier and more efficient solutions to unique user needs.
- they resist obsolescence and shorten the redesign cycle. A new generation design can reuse most of the old modules and change is provided by a few improved modules.
- they let you replace worn parts and components (which can then be recycled).
- they allow flexibility in use, as the way you use your design can change over time.
- they allow easy and quick installation of parts and components.
- they allow easy and quick servicing and maintenance of parts and components.
- they deliver shorter learning curves to become familiar with designs and the way they work.
- and, they minimize cost by reducing the diversity of parts in a design.
You are not stuck with using a machine or structure the way it comes out of a kit box for example. You can re-design it and re-configure it. You can experiment with it. You can have it do different things based on the configuration you put it into, giving you the flexibility to experiment and optimize your projects.
You don’t have to keep getting new and expensive metal parts for your projects or constantly spend more resources on trying new ideas, or stop trying them altogether because you have to get new parts. Once you use UberBlox™ parts, use can simply re-use them, over and over again. And due to the high-quality of these parts, you can count on them working well for decades.
UberBlox™ brings to the table the ultimate in recycling of parts by letting you do the recycling for your own use!
The Philosophy Behind UberBlox™
Traditional plastic building blocks such as LEGO® have some great qualities:
- The way they go together in a simple way (ease-of-use),
- a single connection mechanism (quick and simple connections),
- the way you can re-use the same parts over and over again (re-usability),
- and, how you can just change your ideas on-the-fly moving blocks around (re-configurability).
Also, in order to be able to make any type of useful machine you usually require years of developing skills and know-how. You need to know about technical design principles, engineering, electronics, hardware, software, not to mention the skills required to fabricate and assemble parts accurately to make such complicated machines work.
UberBlox™ uses the same philosophy of traditional plastic building blocks (e.g. LEGO®) by having a single connection method for the majority of connections and discrete parts/components (standard lengths and shapes), but also supports the strength, rigidity, and accuracy requirements of systems using metal parts.
UberBlox™ bridges the gap between these two worlds and makes something as complicated as designing and making an automated machine accessible to anyone interested in having a fast, robust and accurate modular system. You can keep re-using for it for new designs and your ideas for building and programming automated machines.
Advantages over traditional T-Slot Extrusions
Today’s readily available aluminum T-slot extrusion systems, useful as they are for certain applications, still require you to have some fabrication skills. You likely need to cut, drill or mill, worry about fit, and possibly have to re-try to get to your desired structure, and you need to do all this accurately with tools and equipment that you may not have easy access to or fully know how to operate properly and safely.
You also have to deal with a wide range of fastening options for connecting these parts which may leave you scratching your head trying to decide the best option for a joint. On top of that, since your extrusions have been cut to custom lengths for a specific design, they can rarely be re-used for another design without time-consuming modifications, further diminishing their future value.
UberBlox™ eliminates all that!
You simply imagine a machine or framing idea within the context of the UberBlox™ system, and you start assembling parts, mostly with a single small tool.
– You don’t need to have great fabrication skills or know about different types and ways to create joints.
– You don’t need to modify parts or get them to a custom size, you just use them as-is.
– You can re-configure your design as you wish, using the same standard parts within the same system, over and over again.
– And you can do all this easily and very quickly.
– The supporting electro-mechanic, electronic, and software components then help you quickly bring your machine to life.