This Instructable shows how to make a little walking robot which avoids obstacles (much like many commercially available options). But what's the fun in buying a toy when you can instead start with a motor, sheet of plastic and pile of bolts and proceed to build your own. Well I hope you share this attitude and please enjoy.

update - coming soon, lovely prepackaged kits from oomlout


--No difficult to source parts (no switches, relays, or IC's (everything but the motor is available at Home Depot).
--No soldering.
--Has a Mechano for grown-ups feel.
--Choice of options for cutting out pieces (scroll saw & drill, access to a laser cutter, purchasing online from Ponoko).

A quick video of the finished product walking through frame:

( A longer video of it navigating between obstacles can be found on step 7 )


(If you would like any of the files in an editable format they can be found on a parallel Instructable here )

(Coming Soon, an Instructable on how to use a microcontroller (Arduino) to control the robot)

(I have used metric units and components in this Instructable. However those more familiar with imperial units do not despair, replacing the metric component with their nearest imperial counterpart should work (although I have yet to test this)) .

Step 1: Parts & Tools

All parts, with the exception of the motor, can be found at any Home Depot. The motor can be ordered from a number of online stores for about $10.

(there is also a pdf version of the parts list attached to this step '21-(OAWR)-Parts List.pdf')

Parts List:

Nuts and Bolts: (~$10)
  • 3mm x 15mm Bolt (x20)
  • 3mm x 20mm Bolt (x2)
  • 3mm x 30mm Bolt (x9)
  • 3mm Washer (x48)
  • 3mm Nut (x45)
  • 4mm Nut (x26)
  • 5mm Washer (12mm OD) (x2)

  • Various Colours of Electrical Wire (~$5)
  • Crimp Wire Terminals (red 5mm ring) (x18) (~$2)
  • 2 AA Battery Box (x2) (~$2)
  • Motor (Tamiya twin motor gearbox (#70097) (available from many online sources) ( on froogle ) ( manufacturers site ) ( sparkfun ) (~$10)
  • Crank Set (Tamiya 3 mm Diameter Shaft Set) etamiya ) (<$10)

  • Acrylic (150mm x 300mm x 3mm thick) (~$6)
  • Whisker Wire (260mm x 1.6mm)(or two large paper clips) (~$1)
  • Elastic Band

Tool List:

  • Printer
  • 5.5mm Wrench (x2)
  • Screwdriver
  • Pliers
  • Crimp Terminal Crimpers
  • Hot Glue Gun

Additional Tools Depending on Choice of Sourcing Acrylic Parts

Option 1 (Scrollsaw & Drill)
  • Glue Stick
  • Scroll saw
  • Drill
  • Drill Bits (3.2mm, 12.5mm, 16mm)
(I was going to use this option however I snagged a free shipping coupon from Ponoko so instead had my pieces laser cut)

Option 2 (Ponoko)
  • A Ponoko account
(option I used)

Option 3 (Access to a Laser Cutter)
  • Access to a laser cutter
<p>cool, a little to complicate</p>
I fixed my problem by using an AE-MDL-DualusDC chip. I originally couldn&rsquo;t get enough power, but this board gave me plenty of power (1A RMS, 2A peak, per H Bridge). It has connectors on both sides that give you access to all the control and power signals. It also has SMT pads, which allow you to solder your own wires on. You can get more information about the board here http://www.avayanelectronics.com/Products/AE-DualusDC/AE_DualusDC_Manual.pdf . The cheapest ones I&rsquo;ve found so far have been from DiverDudes.com, they sell assembled and bare chips, this is the link to their site http://driverdudes.com/product_info.php?products_id=32
I'm in the process of building one of these guys but unfortunately my Tamiya Twin motor gear box didn't come with any cranks. Was it supposed to? Where can I buy some extra cranks from?
did you check out Pronoko?If that dosent work try mano factors site<br>
Hey; Oh that's not good news, It sounds like there may be a few versions of the Tamiya Gearbox to be purchased. Not sure the exact part number of the one which comes with the cranks. In a push remote control servo horns will work (it takes a little super glue to hold them in place). Regards Clement
hi ;<br/> i make one in a bigger size ; it 'll be manage by an arduino to be atonomous <br/><br/>here is the link to the <a rel="nofollow" href="http://vimeo.com/638284">video</a><br/><br/>i 'll make an instructable when the project will be finish<br/><br/>thanks you <br/><br/>erreur404<br/>
why not add a cover so its not showing wires?Yo can have bronze, silver or gold i picked bronze it has pointy feet like spikes but how does it start?Is there like a button or something?<br>
Hey; Wow it looks great, I like the look of the red acrylic and the prospects of what can be done giving it's Arduino brain. Regards Clement
i got all the parts ready..<br>just gona start assembling it..<br>was wondering ..<br>it doesnt use any sensors how does it work..?<br>thanks.
&nbsp;This is very cool.
Not to be mean but in the video I'm really sure i saw that walk into the wall at the end
&nbsp;it seems like that it's recorded by a camcorder has wide-angle lens.. so it made some illusion..&nbsp;
in the video it didnt avoid anything it just hit the wall?
I have a question. The motor kit did not have a crank (mentioned in step 5 of the assembly guide. Can anybody suggest a good substitute? Or, can you give me some dimensions that would work for making a substitute crank? Thanks!
What is you add a pin on the front that goes in and out so that it can push the robot out of the corner? The pin could go in and out in slightly different directions. About the legs getting stuck. Looser joints may help. Maybe mount the legs on rubber bases so they wiggle a bit. That may also help with obstacles.
Im making the oawr and I went to a Home Depot in California and I was only able to get 3 items needed. Also...Where can I get the bolts. I cant find that small of bolts anywhere. Please reply I need help fast!!
Hi crohsninja;<br/><br/>Goodness me that is a bit of a surprise.<br/><br/>A fall back is all the a parts nuts bolts wires, battery boxes etc. can be bought online at McMaster Carr <a rel="nofollow" href="http://mcmaster.com">http://mcmaster.com</a><br/><br/>
I also cant find a motor that comes with the two cranks. Were you able to find one with cranks? If so, where did you get it? Thanks a million!
hey, this give me a nyce idea to a robot, but this run off a little to the rule of K.I.S.S, either that, I'll buid and post here how I made mine. you're robot it's a very well job, realy goob enginering on it. five stars!
how do you connect the wires to the motor
Had a design once with 4 wheels instead of legs. Problem with it was it was too bloody fast. Sold it to a friend a few years ago, though, and he thought it was funny.
Very nice robot. I see that is use the same circuit has the beetle robot.
I think this excellent manual is very detailed and very help full Loes the link attached to the center of robotics and vision of ESPOL place where many of these projects [http:// www.cvr.espol.edu.ec (ESPOL)]]Center for Vision &amp; Robotics (ESPOL)]<br/>
I made something that turns around when it hits obstacles. it consists of two big wheels and a pivot rod. when it hits a wall, the pivot rod is thrust beneath the wheels , and it rotates. that means that for the second that the robot is supported by the rod, it turns about 90 degrees. when it goes back down, the rod flips back around and the robot continues. his name is earl g. (electronic always relocating little guy.)
Here it is with a picaxe 28x1, ping sonar and motors -
Hey it looks rather brilliant, I do like how much more bug like it looks with the sonar on the front. Regards Clement
you used some kind of cad software to make those blueprints for the parts ? this looks quite interesting I think for my next robot project. I figured i want to build a robot that can lift the legs independently back and forth up and down. with servo motors or something.
Hey; Well not so much CAD software I'm a bit of a Luddite and actually use Corel Draw for the design. Then for the three-D model I used Google's Sketchup. Strange you mention a more dexterous walker I actually have a six legged 12 servo version in the works which I will post here when completed. Regards Clement
Well, I cut the chassis last night on my Epilog laser. Made a few revision changes to fit the acrylic thickness from Home Depot (in Florida) and resized the holes to fit 4-40 screws available at Home Depot here in the states. Good easy project for those wanting to give it a try. For the fellow who asked about the Tamiya crank arms not coming with the motor - make sure to order Tamiya part# 70105 as it comes with 2 crank arms (among other things).
hey i am really looking into building this and can i get <strong>really</strong> <strong>really</strong> detailed instructions for this i know i am asking alot but i really want to build this if you can get me the instructions please e-mail me<br/><br/>thanks,<br/>fidgety<br/>
what kind of motor do you use.
cool Thanks
its silly
that is very nice idea that you came up with, you should put a patent on it if there is no patents on your idea.
Ah yes, very nice work - please do add the Arduino.
looks really cool, all gadgetish looking :-)
i like how it looks
Very cool! I'll make one of these of christmas break. The only thing I noticed wrong is that you say it is "Obstacle Avoiding" but it doesn't really avoid obstacles, it just goes around them and isn't stoped by them. +1!!!
Dorkfish is right, it's not an OAWR, it just an obstacle detecting walking robot... Avoidance require vision (IR sensor, sonar++) and some level of AI. This one just boldly walks ahead until it hits something (read: the whiskers hit something). Seems like a good project for beginners though. But I like 6 independent legs with at least 2 DOF (degrees of freedom) for my walkers.
I hope you give it a go. On the name front too true it is more of a Bump And Go Around Walking Robot but the acronym BAGAWR didn't seem quite as friendly. Regards: Clement
ha ha. very true, cool robot though! I think this is a good way project to help give people that aren't good with soldering and complex electronics the chance to make a small robot.
ok thx want to be frieds? and i love the funny robot
this is a great instructable. you should add it to the homemade holidays contest too! woot! :P
:) Thank You. I hope you enjoy Regards Clement
on the last vid why did it keep on walking into the wall?
:) I like to think it's because it has developed a liking for that corner but the sad truth is I have some tuning to do in whisker shape and switch tension and the like before it is able to navigate perfectly. It's not quite perfect I'm afraid. Regards Clement
This is very cool.
Very nice! I might just have to try this out!

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