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Beam Robotics

Building your Own Robot
Building your own basic robot is not as hard as it may seem at first. There are many excellent online resources to help get you started. One way to get started is by building a BEAM robot. BEAM stands for Biology, Electronics, Aesthetics, Mechanics. Simple analog circuits are used to build this type of robot and all that is really needed to get started is basic soldering skills.

My first BEAM robot was what is called a Trimet. This tiny robot is powered by a solar cell and moves by spinning.

Trimet

I then went on to make a second trimet with a bumper, so the first one would have someone to play with.

Bumper Trimet

Then I started getting more complicated and made a 4 legged walking robot. It still has a few kinks in it a walks a little funny, but I made it and am very happy with it.

Walking Robot

A good starting place is Make Magazine issue 6. A good online source for parts and kits is a Canadian company called Solarbotics. The website Street Tech has an excellent article on how to build type of BEAM robot called a Pummer. What are you waiting for? Get building!

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