Let's Make Robots!

Physi the *robot*

Physi rides around on 2 toothbrush heads.


Photo_56.jpgOk, so it's not really a robot, it can't make decisions nor can it think what-so-ever because it has no microcontroller. However, running on vibration motors from 2 Xbox controllers I ripped apart it can drive around and bounce off walls. It has no wheels, only two toothbrush heads whose bristles vibrate when the Xbox motors are on.

There are 2 heavy magnets on the bottom that change its center of gravity thus affecting how it moves. Because of this, I have named it "Physi" as it helps to explain simple physics concepts.

 I cut a piece of scrap-metal I had on hand to make a base. I then attached 2 toothbrush heads to each side of the bottom with hot glue to simulate wheels. After ripping open 2 Xbox controllers I pulled out their larger motors (there are smaller ones, but they aren't nearly as powerful) and hot glued each right above the corresponding toothbrush head. I soldered the 2 black motor wires (you have to cut off the plastic boxes at the end) together. I then soldered the left motor's red wire to the red wire of the 9v battery holder. The battery holder's black wire was soldered to the switch. Finally, the right motor's red wire was also connected to the switch.

 This was all done in under 20 minutes with parts I had on hand. If I can do this, so can you.

I don't want to call this my "First robot" because quite frankly it's just too pitiful. I'm working with the BASIC Stamp right now, and I've ordered some parts from Sparkfun.com to make something remotely intelligent. 

 I have more picture on my desktop, but it won't let me import more than one except online images. What should I do?


If you have any questions or comments please let me know. 

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I'm a beginner...... And i wanna make this for my little project at my school. Please can u give more detailed description on this? 

Hey - where is the video for this one??

Interesting idea. I don't think it would make a good battle though, they wouldn't do much. I could thereotically hook up a mucrocontroller and sensors to make it relatively intelligent.

thanks for the imput, its great to get feedback. My parts from Sparkfun are on their way, so I should be able to make a "real" robot soon.



Get a two or more together and have them battle each other. Kind of like king of the mountain.

The old Xbox controllers are extremely common yet are either very cheap or free because they are obsolete thanks to the new Xbox 360. Of course, to me the only good thing a video game console is good for is spare parts. :) 

I've seen pager motors on sparkfun.com and solarbotics.com. As long as you get one with enough power you should be fine. One day I mght hook it up to a microcontroller and program it. That would be very interesting.

I'll see if I can post a video. 

...and on that note, does anyone have the knowhow to get the XBOX 360 chatpad to work with a Windows PC? I'm told it needs a driver, but Microsoft haven't published one.

Incidentally, you can buy the pager motors by the dozen on eBay. They're not expensive. I'd like a guid on making a little tiny H-bridge which would allow them to reverse direction!! 

God created the integers; all else is the work of man - Leopold Kronecker

Cool robot. Here's a quote from Joseph Engelberger (industrial robotics pioneer): "I can't define a robot, but I know one when I see one."

God created the integers; all else is the work of man - Leopold Kronecker

Cool! A robot that polishes as it moves :D Thanks for sharing, it is always inspiring! 

"If I can do this, so can you.".. erh.. only; I do not have 2 Xbox controllers ;)

"What should I do?" Press the little "Browse"- icon. Must make a walkthwrough on that one day!


/ Fritsl

Thanks Fritsl,


I'll upload some more images. Is there a way to import video is a file, not as an embedded URL? My computer can take video, and I don't have a YouTube account.





Videos have to be uploaded to Google, youtube, whatever, please see instructions for when updating your entry :) 

/ Fritsl