Introduction: Insect Bot

Picture of Insect Bot

Want to test your Soldering Skills !! here is an easy to make insect robot that you can build in about 20 minuets.

The insect bot uses a vibration motor as its head, which is powered by a capacitor as its abdomen, which I salvaged from an old toy plane, with specification - 2.8V 5F, you can get one of ebay for a couple of dollars.

Use diodes for the Legs and Antenna , you can also use resistor. All these components are then soldered together on a small etched PCB which forms the thorax of the insect.

Now since we are using a super capacitor to power the insect bot, we will use 2 AA batteries to power it up as shown in the video above.

If your new to soldering, check out the awesome guide on How to Solder - by noahw..

Step 1: Collect/Scavenge the Electronic Components You'll Need

Picture of Collect/Scavenge the Electronic Components You'll Need

Collect the electronic components you'll need to complete the build

For the insect bot

For the charger

  • 2 AA Batteries
  • AA battery Holder with a On/Off switch preferably
  • Female jumper wire to solder to the battery holder wire
  • Heat shrink

In addition here are the tools you'll need to complete the build

  • Solder
  • Soldering Iron
  • Helping hand
  • Scissors
  • Plier
  • Wire stripper

Step 2: Cutting a Piece of the PCB Board

Picture of Cutting a Piece of the PCB Board

Cut a small piece of the etched PCB board, you'll need at-least 6 X 4 holes size as shown in the picture above.But if you are new to soldering cut an 8 X 5 holes size so that you can have a lager spacing between your solder joint.

In addition also cut off the mail header, here you will need two pieces , one with two header pins and the other with just on header pins.

Step 3: Soldering the Capacitor and Header Pins

Picture of Soldering the Capacitor and Header Pins

Solder the capacitor to one end of the PCB board as shown in the picture.

Using a set of pilers solder the header pins, for the placement of the header pins check out the second picture above, once done connect the inner most header pin to the capacitor +ve pin with solder.

Step 4: Solder the Motor

Picture of Solder the Motor

Peal of the tape from the sticky side of the motor and stick it to the PCB as shown in the first picture above.

Thread the +ve red wire around the header pins if the wire is too long and solder it just below the outer most header pin.

Once done connect the outermost header pin and the +ve of the vibration motor as shown in the third picture above.

Now solder the blue -ve wire of the motor just below the -ve of the capacitor. And then solder a single header ping just below blue wire as shown in the fourth picture above.

Step 5: Solder the Antenas and Legs

Picture of Solder the Antenas and Legs

Now for the antennas and legs you can use diodes or resistors , I basically choose to use diodes as I a lot of them lying around in my parts bin.

Cut about 6 diodes using scissors at one end as shown in the picture above

Solder two diodes just below the vibration motor which will act as the fake antennas of the insect bot.

And then solder four more diodes as the legs as shown in the picture above.

Step 6: Soldering Lead to the Charger

Picture of Soldering Lead to the Charger

Now to make the charger to the charge the capacitor of the insect bot, cut the ends of the female jumper cable.

Strip and tin the ends of the jumper wire and the battery holder

Cut two pieces of heat shrink tubing and thread it through the battery holder wire as shown in the third picture.

Solder the female jumper ends to the battery wires

Using a heat source, shrink the tubing ..

Step 7: Charging and Testing the Insect Bot

To charge the super capacitor on the insect bot connect the batter holder to the male header pins just below the capacitor pins on the PCB and hit the ON switch on the battery holder.

Once you hit the ON switch count to 10 and then hit the OFF switch.

Then use the Jumper to connect two header pins as shown in the video above and watch your bot move like an insect.

Step 8: Soldering Tips

Picture of Soldering Tips

If you have followed along and your at this step , Congratulations!! your have successfully completed the super charged insect bot.

Here are few Soldering Tips

  • While connecting two wires always tin the wires before soldering them together
  • Once you solder a component like a capacitor or the diodes , wiggle the competent slightly to check for a scenario of insufficient wetting as shown in the second picture above.
  • If for some reason you make a mistake while creating a joint , it is always a good idea to desolder using a desolder pump or heating up the joint and then use fresh solder to create a joint, instead of trying to repair the joint.
  • Once your done soldering always clean you soldering iron tip
  • For heat shrink - instead of using a lighter or a flame, just roll the tubing over your soldering iron tip as shown in the picture above.


rmurphy27 (author)2015-07-27

Very clever! I'm always looking for cute little gadgets to use up some spare components when I'm bored. I'll definitely make one (or two...or..)

Grafx4Life (author)2015-07-27

This looks amazing. I love the way the battery charges the capacitor. I also love that I could use it to learn basic soldering :) Still afraid of burning myself ;)

SonikaJAnand (author)2015-07-23

THis tiny robot is so cool and interesting. Looks easy enough to make it with my kids. Thanks for the detailed instructable and the video for sure helps out

rinjho (author)2015-07-22

this is so cool!!! its so unique yet so simple.... i'll surely try making it...

nancyjohns (author)2015-07-21

Neat! I didn't know that you could power it that long with just a capasitor.

Digital Flame (author)2015-07-21

Is it just me that wants to build a giant one? Nice work! Got my vote!

Treker2 (author)2015-07-20

I love tiny robots! Good job.

Eric Brouwer (author)2015-07-20

Cool project.

emilyvanleemput (author)2015-07-20

It's so cute!

dark_builds (author)2016-03-31

Could we use LEDs for the antenna and legs?

Abhishekkuksal (author)2015-09-06

what if i skip capacitor? maybe its all here to rectify dirty dc power supply isnt it?

dan ado (author)2015-08-11

very nice. I really love this project

obiii (author)2015-08-02

whats its main function...tell me anyone plzz

OWH (author)2015-08-01

could not find the super capacitor

minecrafterDude (author)2015-08-01

Like, wow im into minecraft, techno stuff art and some other sruff.. Im just a teenager and havent done my own little robot or something. I found this very interesting!

gsivori1 (author)2015-07-31

Very nice! Quite clever indeed. But beware, that 5F capacitor is dangerous for kids and cats if you're planning to use it as a toy. 5F is a huge load of charge, usual capacitors are at 1uF range which is 1*10^-6 F... You can make it safe changing the capacitor and charger for just a button battery 3V. If should last for at least 20 minutes considering vibrator motors don't really take that much current. Thanks for the instructable!

Anton Narki (author)2015-07-31

Very nice, thank you!

acintyaj (author)2015-07-28

the capacitor was a bit hard to find, so i tried a smaller one,it worked fine as well but i recomend the standard one

acintyaj (author)2015-07-28

we could make a tiny robo insect army ;p

hiteshp (author)2015-07-26

That's The Benefit Of Having Your Basics Thorough ;)

alexpimania (author)hiteshp2015-07-26

How long does it saty charged for?

CJA3D (author)alexpimania2015-07-27

Thanks for the comment, the discharge time is about 6-7 mins..

Bigredhawg (author)2015-07-26

i love it! i think we will have to give this a try. my grandbabies and myself. thanks again, looks like a blast to build

MVANDORN (author)2015-07-26

MVANDORN (author)2015-07-26

Joro 05 (author)2015-07-26

Powered by super-capacitor? Excellent! Also You can put a PV cell

MattTuck (author)2015-07-26

With a 555 and a led it's a lightningbug!

solaymankhan007 (author)2015-07-23

Wow !!
making it. :D

CJA3D (author)solaymankhan0072015-07-24

thanks for the comment , do post a picture if you get to making one ..

saiyanx (author)2015-07-24

Awesome, how long is your discharge time and why didn't you add a switch with the capacitor circuit?

CJA3D (author)saiyanx2015-07-24

Thanks for the comment, the discharge time is about 6-7 mins..I am using the Jumper which acts as a switch..And yes I could have used a switch in addition to the male header pins which are used to charge the insect bot , but this would mean i need an extra row on PCB to solder switch.. And i think the jumper make it look more elegant :) ..

panithman (author)2015-07-23

Gr8 work buddy

rivter (author)2015-07-22


gadgetboy786 (author)2015-07-22

its very cool but I'm using 3 button cells instead of capacitors

yavr (author)2015-07-21


redspl (author)2015-07-21

Cool, but RC controlled will be cooler :))

sturte09 (author)2015-07-21


About This Instructable




Bio: Born as a farmer, studied electronics ,working as a Consultant and a 3D printing enthusiast by night..
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