Poking around on the internet one day, I found this clever Cat and Mouse Automata from Germany, and decided to try and build it. The plans are available free for download too!
I think it’s cheating to use a laser cutter for this sort of project, but it lets you build it fast and accurately. Within an hour of changing parts of the design to US units (sigh) to match my materials and ten minutes of cutting, I had all the parts ready. Assembly took several days as I glued a few parts at a time.
I’m now inspired to design and build my own automata projects, so stay tuned!