DIY Robotic Hand Controlled by a Glove and Arduino

FeaturedContest Winner
Picture of DIY Robotic Hand Controlled by a Glove and Arduino
This project idea came to me when I was sitting on a bed on a hotel room on vacation. I thought: "It'd be really neat to have a robotic hand that I can control with my own hand!" Upon returning home, I embarked upon a journey to design and create the project. I hope you enjoy!

The basic components of the hand and glove are the hand itself, the servos, the Arduino, the glove, and the flex sensors. The glove is mounted with flex sensors: variable resistors that change their value when bent. They're attached to one side of a voltage divider with resistors of a constant value on the other side. The Arduino reads the voltage change when the sensors are bent, and triggers the servos to move a proportional amount. The servos pull strings that act as tendons, allowing the fingers to move. Here's a video of it in action ( 

The hand itself comes from an open-source, 3D-printable download. It's part of a project called InMoov: (

This guide will show you all the steps required to build your own robotic hand and control glove!
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Gather the Materials

Picture of Gather the Materials
In total, this project will cost about $100-150, depending on where you get some of the parts. Here's the parts list:

5x MG946R Servos (or equivalent - MG995 or MG996 should work too. I've had a bit of trouble with the range of motion, so servos that support more degrees of rotation would be better) - I got mine from, but for a less expensive option I'd go with eBay (they come directly from China, so shipping may take longer).

5x 4.5 inch flex sensors - I got mine here:
1x Arduino Uno or equivalent (they're also much cheaper on eBay)
5x 22k resistors
1x 6.0-7.2V battery (for the servos) - I used this:

1x small breadboard
1x battery connector - something like this:
Breadboard jumpers/hookup wire
1x small blank PCB - I used something like this, only square:

1x right hand glove (should be sturdy and fit well)
1x 8mm diameter 55mm long bolt
1x 8mm diameter 60mm long bolt
1x 8mm diameter 80mm long bolt
14x 3mm diameter about 20mm long screws
20x 4mm diameter screws (any length between 7mm and 30mm is fine)
Approx. 5 meters of string (should have a high-ish breaking strength) - I used this:

Hot glue
Super glue
Sandpaper (I used 431 grit) - a Dremel tool with a sanding head would also work
Needle and thread

A power drill
A soldering iron
Access to a 3D printer

...And you're ready to start!
1-40 of 98Next »
bigshf1 year ago
This is awesome! You really gave me motive enough to study the whole Arduino technology. Thanks a lot mate and .. Congratulations!
Raphango1 year ago
Pretty wow dude!

How well does the thumb work on this project? can it grip things properly?

dschurman (author)  JediDude62059 days ago
In my case, the thumb worked, but not quite as well as the other fingers. I think one of the main reasons for this was just a tight fit with the bolt that connects it to the rest of the hand, so by widening the hole a bit it should move and be pulled by the servo more freely. Also, I would try putting some sort of putty or rubber on the fingers and palm to provide friction if you really want it to grip well.

I figured it out. The thumb of a human hand has three joints, not 2 like the ones inmoov has!

at least I think that might help


I see that there are many people who would like to down load this as a pdf. If you copy and paste the whole project into Google Docs (it will copy the pictures to) you should be able to download it as a pdf.

RaviJ11 month ago


VenkatN1 month ago

please give full circuit diagram to do this

dschurman (author)  VenkatN1 month ago
There's a diagram of the sensors in step 3, and a drawn diagram of the servo and breadboard connections in step 6
VenkatN1 month ago

please give full circuit diagram to do this

sarvesh72 months ago

I want to make this, but i am new to arduino. Can you please tell me which is the cheapest arduino I can use for this project from this link (or any other cheaper source. I cant spend that much): OR

dschurman (author)  sarvesh72 months ago

I'd say the Uno would be the best way to go. There are some on eBay from China that are around $10 USD, and that's the cheapest way I've found

Thnx. Should i buy arduino uno or arduino uno R3. I dont know any difference. I am getting confused with arduino uno, arduion uno R3, freeduino uno R3 clone and AVRduino pro (equavalent to arduino uno). Can you please tell me which to buy?

neuman.frank2 months ago

please can you tell me what the codes you use are. You can send me the link so i take a look at it.


dschurman (author)  neuman.frank2 months ago
The Arduino code? It's attached in one of the steps, it's called "Hand.rtf"

Thanks I will look it up and get back to you .

myoung352 months ago
Thats awesome
nurkob722 months ago

Is there a program you have to download to get the servos to turn to the sensors?

EliasRobotics3 months ago


Great project, I'm almost finished but I'm stuck at the part with the servos. Isn't a 180° motion too much? It almost breaks my robothand..

tsmith1305 months ago

So I have almost finished the glove, one small issue that I have come across is that the middle finger's flex sensor doesn't seem to be working, I tried a sweep program on the servo and the servo worked but the sensor doesn't seem to working. Any idea's? I have also ceck the soldering, in the mean time I will be replacing the wires to see if it is that too.

Thanks if you can help, if not, none the less thanks!

mionut36 months ago

Hello D Schurman,

Could you please make a simple drawing of the wires connected to the servos , that schematic you promised?

Don't create it in various programs, make a pencil drawing and it'll do.

My version is near completion and I really need that schematic.

Thanks !

dschurman (author)  mionut35 months ago

Sorry, I meant the "Test the Servos" step.

mionut3 dschurman5 months ago

thank you !! Here's a picture with my progress so far :)

silicone hand, made it myself within a mold

dschurman (author)  mionut35 months ago

Looks good!

dschurman (author)  mionut35 months ago

Sorry it's taken so long! The end of the school year has been very busy. Anyway, I've attached a drawing to the "Making the Sensor Circuit" step of the Instructable. Thanks for your patience.

cbouck6 months ago

could you post a picture of what you did on the breadboard for this project i am not good at wiring and i dont know what to do at that part.

dschurman (author)  cbouck5 months ago

I've attached a drawn schematic for it in Step 6.

Reese_Rules5 months ago

Would you mind if I use this as my science fair project. I think it is excellent work!

dschurman (author)  Reese_Rules5 months ago

Of course you can!

danielgalea6 months ago

Would you be able to take another picture of your PCB up close please?
Only one side is included up close, and i need the other to make sure it is all correct

Thank you.

jayotte6 months ago

this inspired me so much to create this with my own twist on it for my regional science fair next year. the only thing im troubled with is the availability to print the hand/forearm. i do not own a 3d printer, and online services cost a lot of money per part. could anyone help me with ideas of how to either print the hand or an alternative?

dschurman (author)  jayotte6 months ago

I know there are some walk-in places in which you can reserve time on a printer

sparten117 months ago

any code for the audrino? can this easily be modified to work on a PC with windows interface to have the input be seen as joystick inputs?

dschurman (author)  sparten117 months ago

It probably could, but I have no experience with that kind of thing.

Kayoken7 months ago
I'm going to try to get my hands on this I have quite a good idea
dschurman (author)  Kayoken7 months ago

What's your idea?

lspasov7 months ago
can i also use 2.2 flex sensors?
dschurman (author)  lspasov7 months ago

Probably, just find good positioning for them so they'll bend enough

1-40 of 98Next »