Let's Make Robots!


Dances to funky beats

Videos (most recent on top):

  1. econoSpazzi Dance Party
  2. MAKE edited video of econoSpazzi
  3. Original long-ish video



Update 2012-09-07: He's Baaaaack!

I revived econoSpazzi for Maker Faire. His code has been ported to the FetaDuino by Rocket Brand Studios. The LCD is great, and I built it into a nice acrylic frame and added a joystick.

A simple menu on start up lets you select Demo mode (seen in the econoSpazzi Dance Party video), Jumpstick mode (digital on-off control of the solenoids), and Smoothstick (analog PWM control of the solenoids).

You can vary the tempo during demo mode using the joystick. The joystick also allows you to control econoSpazzi's movements in Jumpstick and Smoothstick modes.



While I was filming Make: Live episode 12 with Becky Stern and Matt Richardson, I saw they had a Beatbots Spazzi. I love those things. Becky was really nice and gave me a set of the Makerbot printer parts. I was really stoked to make one.

However, when I looked up the other parts I would need, I saw that the solenoids they were specifying on the Makezine.com website were $18 each. That's too much for my wallet.

I knew a source for a similar solenoid for only $1.50 each. Thus, econoSpazzi was born.

Here's the site for the original Spazzi project on Makezine.com. I bought my solenoids from allelectronics.com (update: No longer available last I checked). They are rated for 24V DC, but I found that after I cut the included spring to size, they worked fine at 10-12V DC.

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Very nice, IG. I like it!

Cool! I love it! Drums and jumps at the same time, hehe.


You know, I considered how loud the solenoids are to be a nuisense, but now that you point it out it's kinda cool. 

I'll have to work that into the programming as a feature.

Hey nice work IG :) I like it too. Thanks for posting.

You're so lucky!!!!!!! ^^ Pretty funky for a small robot!

There's more I want to do with him. I'd like to have a mode where he follows along to music and another where he responds to optical detectors, plus a demo mode where he runs through some cool dance moves.

Cool ...

I like the hair and the way it moves .

By the way from what are the hair made of ?

The hair is some gel-rubbery thing that was from a kid's toy. I came across it while tidying up the house. A few drops of super glue later and econoSpazzi has a cool hair style.

I started experimenting with using PWM (analogWrite on Arduino) with econoSpazzi's solenoids. The results are more sublte gestures than shown in the video, along with singing solenoids!

This is fun!

Ha-ha! That is cool! Do you have a video of PWM version yet? :D