Introduction: Making a Cyborg Arm for Design Night (in Autodesk Gallery)

Picture of Making a Cyborg Arm for Design Night (in Autodesk Gallery)
(This is for Tim, an awesome Artist in Residence and a fantastic friend. I hope our paths meet again)

When I was invited to the Design Night (about DIY) in the Autodesk Gallery, my first thought was "what will I wear?". So I took an all time favorite classic and I gave it a party twist. And I'm talking about my old cyborg armor.

Ladies and Gentlemen: I give you my Cyborg Arm, Mark 4, denomination "Party Crusher".

What are the improvements?
  • More ergonomic: lighter, softer in the inside and with a better handle.
  • More portable: It's smaller than the previous versions, but big enough for a good impression.
  • Easier to make: Its design was simplified.
  • Cool cup holder: Now you don't have to remove your cyborg arm for drink a shot. Why using your bare hands when you can drink with style?

So, I took a bunch of e-waste and plastic trash and started this project. At the end, I got an interesting piece that was the atraction of the party. It's a shame I don't have the video when I went up to the DJs scaffold and he played "Intergalactic" of Beastie Boys...

Step 1: Materials and Stuff

Picture of Materials and Stuff
I used the following stuff:
  • 1 pair of plastic skis for children
  • 2 laptop power adaptators
  • 1 electric screwdriver
  • 2 4in x 5/8in mending braces
  • 8 corner brace inside L (2in. x 5/8in.)
  • 2 corner brace inside L (1in. x 1/2in.)
  • 1 4AA batteries holder
  • 1 damaged emergency flashlight (big enough for housing your hand)
  • 1 big Thermo's cap
  • 1 damaged tower fan
  • 1 damaged baby stroller (I used the bottle table and some tubes)
  • 1 damaged plastic table set for babies (I used the front support)
  • black plastic junk pieces
  • Nuts, screws and bolts
  • Iron washers
  • Wire
  • Superglue (cyanoacrylate)
  • Cellulose sponges
I made a Cyborg Eye, too. I used the following stuff:
  • Damaged digital camera
  • Red LED
  • 1 330 Ohm resistor
  • Wire
  • 1 2 AA batteries holder
  • Tiara from a Wild Planet exploration glasses
  • Flat wire or a black rubber band.


Dremel Rotary Tool
Wire cutters
Screwdriver kit
Soldering Iron

And don't forget:

1. If you don't have it, replace it!
2. Use protective equipment (dust mask and goggles)
3. Beware of drilled and soldered hot surfaces
4. Work in a good ventilated area.
5. Always have junk in stock.
6. Have fun.

Step 2: Transforming the Skis Into Pincers

Picture of Transforming the Skis Into Pincers

I took the skis and removed the bent front part. Depending of the size of your cyborg arm, you can use each ski as a pincer or just segments. I used half of each ski. I put these together with paper tape, so I could modificate each one at the same time.

I filleted one of the thick edges and drilled a hole. This will be the spot where I will attach the pincers to the arm.

Step 3: Hacking the Electric Screwdriver

Picture of Hacking the Electric Screwdriver

I took a Black & Decker electric screwdriver and I cut it in two separated parts: the gearbox (for the pincer open and close movement) and the handle (for grabing the cyborg arm and actuate the gearbox).

Step 4: Installing the Gearbox

Picture of Installing the Gearbox

I grabbed the Thermo's cap and removed the center pieces. Then I made a big hole for gitting the gearbox, attaching it in the center with small corner braces.

From the baby stroller, I cut a piece of metallic tube and I attached it to the axis. I drill holes on each end for attaching the mending braces that move the pincers.

Step 5: Mechanics

Picture of Mechanics

I attached the pincers to each side of the Thermo's cap using corner braces, bolts, nuts and washers. Then I connected these to the axis tube using mending braces. The result: depending of the direction of the gearbox axis rotation, the tube extends or gather the mending braces, opening or closing the pincers.

Step 6: Arm Housing

Picture of Arm Housing

I took the fan (it had two sections. I used one and I keep the other for another project) and the flashlight and I removed everything inside that can incommode my arm. I removed the handle of the flashlight, too. Then I made a hole in the back of the flashlight, big enough for fitting the gearbox. The, I attached the pincers to the flashlight, housing the gearbox in the flashlight hole.

Step 7: Installing the Handle

Picture of Installing the Handle

I took the screwdriver handle and I adapted it to the glove. I had to cut in the bottom for fitting to one of the flashlight pillars, and had to install half case of a power adaptor to the top of the handle. Then I attached it using screws. I connected the handle control wires to the gearbox wires, and prepared the power wires for connecting these to the batteries holder.

I glued cellulose sponges in the rough parts of the glove, for a more comfortable handgrip.

Step 8: Arming the Arm

Picture of Arming the Arm

At the end of each pincer, I installed a power adaptator case for a better grip.

For covering the hole left when I removed the flashlight handle, I used the case of a digital organizer.

Then, I attached the flashlight to the fan case, using corner braces.

Step 9: The Cupholder

Picture of The Cupholder

The plastic culpholder from the stroller have two functions: beverages holder and box for the batteries holder. So I attached it to the cyborg arm, and installed the batteries holder inside the cupholder box.

I attached one pillar from a baby table, giving a bulky aspect to the arm.

Step 10: Painting

Picture of Painting

I sandpapered the cyborg arm and then painted it with Krylon Stainless Steel Finish.

Step 11: Details in Black

Picture of Details in Black

When the paint dried, I made two pads for the pincers, cutting pieces from a damaged tablet case. I attached some black plastic pieces too, for a better contrast with the steel paint.

Step 12: Cyborg Eye

Picture of Cyborg Eye

I made a quick Cyborg eye using a damaged digital camera. I removed the circuits and installed a red LED in the lens. Then, I soldered the 330 ohms resistor to the shortest terminal (-) of the LED and the I soldered a long wire from the LED to a 2 AA batteries holder (for keeping in the pocket). I attached the camera to a tiara from a Wild Planet toy, and then I attached a flat wire to each end of the tiara, for keeping the cyborg eye in my head.

When I finished, I was ready for party!


Maroon 3 (author)2017-01-26


M.C. Langer (author)Maroon 32017-01-27


Maroon 3 (author)M.C. Langer2017-07-24

It's totally awesome so yeah

bravoechonovember1 made it! (author)2015-08-30

bwahaha! now I can take over the world (and drink soda at the same time!)


(I am making an instructable for the remix contest and I will post the link when I am done writing it)

it's published!

caboaza (author)2013-12-11

buen diseño .............

M.C. Langer (author)caboaza2013-12-15

Muchas gracias

torstenp16 (author)2013-08-13

awesome project! If I use this in one of my movies, I'll credit you and send you the link.

M.C. Langer (author)torstenp162013-08-14

Thank you!

patbking (author)2013-07-02

I know that's awesome and any one can build it with money, time, and the right parts

M.C. Langer (author)patbking2013-07-02

Oh yeah!

patbking (author)2013-07-02

How much did this cost you

M.C. Langer (author)patbking2013-07-02

Time: one week.
Money: I don't know. Maybe $20 in bought materials. The rest was found on the street or the garbage.

patbking (author)2013-07-02

this is a must build

M.C. Langer (author)patbking2013-07-02

Thanks Pat! And is not so complicated!

blakemenezes (author)2013-06-20

Hello! The Autodesk social media team loved your project so much that we included it in a post we created on BuzzFeed. Check out your work featured here:

If you have any questions, please contact me at

Blake Menezes
Autodesk Social Media Strategist

M.C. Langer (author)blakemenezes2013-06-21

Thank you very much, Blake! It's awesome!!! And it's an honor for me to be included in your post :-)

My e-mail is, but you can find me on Pier 9.

Have an amazing day!


Mario Caicedo-Langer
Artist in Residence

J-Five (author)2013-06-02

Does anyone need an operation?

M.C. Langer (author)J-Five2013-06-02


flyingpuppy (author)2013-05-18

Eat your heart out, Macgyver.

M.C. Langer (author)flyingpuppy2013-05-18


walshlg (author)2013-05-13

you are a wild a d craaaaaazy guy! well done, love the use of salvage toys etc and the best though is the idea of the electric screwdriver to get a low speed gearbox!

M.C. Langer (author)walshlg2013-05-13

Thanks Walshlg! (author)2013-05-10

your best instructable!!!!!!!!!!

M.C. Langer (author)mind.the.gap2013-05-10

Thanks Max!!! :-)

Tarun Upadhyaya (author)2013-05-08

Coool :). Thanks for sharing. And I want the maroon robot t-shirt :D

Thanks to you, Tarun! :-)

Mr.Sanchez (author)M.C. Langer2013-05-09

Instructables T-shirts are cool.!!

I have the gray one, looking for more colors. To start with maroon :D

The gray one it´s the only one that I don't have.I have in green,black,blue,Brown,orange even the learn-make share one.=(

M.C. Langer (author)Mr.Sanchez2013-05-09

A Mario le gusta esto.

Carleyy (author)2013-05-09

Very awesome Mario! And fun to play with....I can be a cyborg too!

M.C. Langer (author)Carleyy2013-05-09

You are an AWESOME CYBORG, Carley! Indeed, this cyborg arm looks better on you! :-)

NightHawkInLight (author)2013-05-09

I like the cup holder


depotdevoid (author)2013-05-08

Your cyborg stuff is so awesome! I may just take some tips from you and make a cyborg costume this Halloween.

M.C. Langer (author)depotdevoid2013-05-08

Awesome Ian! Thanks!

HollyMann (author)2013-05-08

How awesome! I Love it!!! Does it have a name? :)

M.C. Langer (author)HollyMann2013-05-08

Thanks Holly! It's the Cyborg Arm Mark 4, denomination "Party Crusher" :-)

HollyMann (author)M.C. Langer2013-05-08

Incredible!!! You're amazing with your creations!

M.C. Langer (author)HollyMann2013-05-08

Thanks a lot beautiful!!! :-)

This is my last month in San Francisco :-(

HollyMann (author)M.C. Langer2013-05-08

aww that is sad. :( I'm sure they'll miss you there!!! Can't stay longer? :)

M.C. Langer (author)HollyMann2013-05-08

I wish, but I don't think so.

Mr.Sanchez (author)2013-05-08

Bravo maestro !!

M.C. Langer (author)Mr.Sanchez2013-05-08

Gracias colega!

jessyratfink (author)2013-05-07

Yaaaaay! This is my favorite thing you've done so far :D

M.C. Langer (author)jessyratfink2013-05-08

Thank you very much Jessy! :-)

wagner_andrea (author)2013-05-08


Thanks Andrea!

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm Mario Caicedo Langer, from Colombia, former Navy officer and BSc in Naval Sciences. Right now I'm Technical Director and Technology Lead Teacher ... More »
More by M.C. Langer:WARBOSEWARBOSERoboto, the Wobbling Toy Robot (evolution of Randofo's "Wobbler")
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