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Hopping Reindeer - Download and Make


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A mash up model for the festive season. I’ve taken the Reindeer and Tree from here and the Three Cam and Gear Box from here and made this paper automata. In a call back to one of my first ever designs I’ve called it the Hopping Reindeer.

All the parts that you need are in the downloadable file. Members can download for free, thanks for your support! Non members can download the parts at the link for £2.50

Print out the parts onto thin card (230gsm /67lb)

Score along the dotted and dashed lines then cut out the parts. The instructions are basically the same as the original models with a few small changes. Check out the reindeer and tree instructions here. The instructions for the base are here but check out the instructions below for some minor changes to the original.

Here’s the completed cam shaft, note that the third cam now has three lobes.

Here’s the cam shaft and gear fitted into place.

The slightly redesigned cam followers now have a triangular end to more closely follow the cams.

With the box upside down the cam fits in here.

The push rod is slightly long and fits to the cam follower like this.

All three cam followers fitted into place.

Make up three reindeer.

Glue them to the ends of the pushrods.

Turn the handle and delight at the Hopping Reindeer! Festive Felicitations one and all!

4 reviews for Hopping Reindeer

  • Hi Rob,
    a lovely

    Hi Rob,

    a lovely reminescence of your former model "The Hopping Sheep" (I built it in 2006, but I as far as I know, it was first published in 1998). It came in my mind immediately as I saw your first sketches.

    Thank you very much for this cute and funny Christmas gift.


    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everybody here in this blog.



    • Thanks maxlrainer Appreciated

      Thanks maxlrainer Appreciated Have a good day,great life and ALL you wish yourself   these sentiments also to Rob and all on this blog

  • The hopping sheep got me

    The hopping sheep got me started on making wooden automata – hopping kangaroos.

    I've gone quite complex since then but it often helps to come to Rob's site for ideas on mechanism.

  • Ahh, these are brilliant,

    Ahh, these are brilliant, very pleased to have stumbled across your site!

  • Begun before the Christmas

    Begun before the Christmas period. Only now completed with delay. I hope there is still interest in it. A video (HD this time): 

    Reindeer hopping R

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