Let's Make Robots!


IBS-Wormy.bas3.34 KB

Last Update: 3-Aug-2011 :

Finished assembly. Updated board photos and added few more.

Meet IBS-Wormy! This is a simple bot for my baby-daughter to play with. And I hope she'll like it :)

IBS stands for "Isotope's Baby Series". I'm planning to build more bots under this tag in future.

Wormy has only one sensor so far - a tilt switch. By sensing changes in sensor's state bot knows if it is being "played" with, and starts wigling like a worm. The body is four segments of PVC pipe linked togeather with three servos which create wigling motions. It has LED eyes for blinky stuff and a speaker to make some noises. All it is enclosed in funny phonendoscope cover made of soft fabric.

This is what I did start with:

The pipe was cut into segments. This particular PVC pipe was quite heavy, so I did a bunch of perforations to make it lighter.

  Mounting of servos was a little bit tricky, as I wanted as sturdy link as possible. So, each servo had to be bolted by two bolts at each side. Top connections was somewhat straightforward, but for the bottom ones I had to design a little mounting plate which is bolted to servo bottom by four screws that hold the servo togeather. I have used 3mm thick Sintra. I found this material really handy for construction. It is soft enough to be cut by utility knife or even scissors, but strong enough for most robot parts.




The links turned out even better than I thought!

The eyes. Wormy looks like a Terminator now :)

This comprises the hardware part.

Wormy has a Picaxe 18X as brain. Full electronic parts list:

  • C1                    10uF Electrolytic Capacitor
  • IC1                   PICAXE-18X
  • J1                    Basic Servo
  • J2                    Basic Servo
  • J3                    Basic Servo
  • LED1               Red LED - 5mm
  • LED2               Red LED - 5mm
  • Programming jack   Stereo Jack (TRS) 3.5mm
  • R1                 4.7kΩ Resistor
  • R2                 22kΩ Resistor
  • R3                 10kΩ Resistor
  • R4                 330Ω Resistor
  • R5                 330Ω Resistor
  • R6                 330Ω Resistor
  • R7                 68Ω Resistor
  • R8                1kΩ Resistor
  • R9                10kΩ Resistor
  • S1                 Mechanical (ball) Tilt Switch
  • SPKR1           Loudspeaker 8 Ohm
  • VCC1             4AA Battery Holder
  • Power switch (not on schematic) Slide type DPDT

The electronic schematics for Wormy (including LEDs and Speaker to be added in future. Made in Fritzing) is:

And this is how my board looks:

Circuit board is located in the first segment (head). Battery pack and power switch in last one (tail).

Assembled wormy w/o skin:

And with skin:

An this is how I program it :D          (BTW, The code is attached)


  1. Video shows Wormy on it's first test.
  2. Wormy is assembled and ready :)
  3. [coming soon] This video should actually show wormy doing what it was made for: playing with my baby, should she like it  :D

This is it. I hope you did like my Wormy! :D

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Thanks a lot. I will definitely have a look on that library! :)

I actually downloaded those music files and tried playing some of them.

In my opinion, musically-speaking, they are awful.  Ok, I did say it was my opinion.  However, to be fair, I only played a few.  Those I did play bore little or no resemblance to the song they were supposed to be.  On the other hand, they give you examples of tune programming.  Surely some of them must be of decent quality.

Anyway, armed with the description in the picaxe manual -part 2, I was able to put a song together with only minor difficulty that actually sounded recogniseable, so it is possible to do it.  If you want to "record" a song in picaxe basic, I would recommend looking at the sheet music and then following the description in the manual -pt.2.

The ones they have for download are on the website as 5 zip files, and then there are some text files, too with other tunes. Click one of the tabs along the top of the page to find them.

Got them all downloaded and unzipped. Even played one tune in simulator. And all this only to realize that 18X does not support tune command! :((( So, I will be limited by sound command... I will listen to these tunes though, as with some time and patience I could probably prepare "sound" version of the tune. Let's see where does that lead me :D

You could swap it out for an 18m or 18m2 and get the tune command.

Yes, I could, but I do not have any :) So, sound command!!!!!!

Sorry, did not realise that the tune command was not supported on the 18X.  Good luck with the play command. It will be a challenge to convert. Good luck with it.


I Like it... very neat and simple..

I love this one! Now I know what to do with these pipes!!

Love it! However, you might want to change the name. IBS also stands for 'Irritable Bowel Syndrome'!  ; j

Thanks a lot :) I think I will leave it as is, so be there a positive alternative for that abbreviation ;)