This whole project started with a dead robot that we wanted to bring back to life. If I've learned anything from Bender, its that there is no better way to rejuvenate a robot than to have it open some beer bottles.

The task of controlling a robot to have it interact with specifically shaped objects and operate heavy loads is challenging and required significant prototyping and modelling. After many tests and many failures, we were very excited to watch our robot successfully maneuver through arm movements to open a beer bottle. And now we can relax as our robot cracks open a few beers for our hard work!

Step 1: Equipment & Materials

The robotic equipment we found was made by Rhino Robotics. The code we use to control it is general enough to work for any type of robotics using dc motors.


  • 3 DC motors (see picture for size, we don't have specs for the motors)
  • Arduino Duemilanove (or any Arduino board)
  • Arduino relay shield
  • 1 SPST relay (12V, 1A)
  • 1 2N3904 NPN transistor (or similar)
  • 1 LED (any color)
  • 3 limit switches
  • 4 10k ohm resistors
  • 1 330 ohm resistor
  • 12V power supply with DC barrel jack
  • Wires!


  • Zip ties
  • Nuts, bolts, and washers (1/4")
  • short screws for mounting
  • MDF board to mount on
  • 8 Tin soup cans
  • Various scraps of metal and rods for mounting


  • Soldering Iron
  • Drill / dremel
  • Voltmeter for testing
  • Wire strippers / cutters
  • Wrenches
  • Hex keys
<p>Wow!! love is amazing. Good job</p>
<p><br>You could rethink the physics of the device to fix the recoil. You may need to re-design the opener, but I think if you grabbed the cap from the back side and applied downward force to the opener, you'd fix the issue of lifting the bottle, and the recoil.</p>
<p>a radio station in Athens, Greece (Vima FM 99,5) (can be heard in most big cities of the country) gifted all the summer period a 12 pack of Corona Cerveza or HeineKen beer just for one local phone call and say something on the air as dedication. I won 6 pack totally so all the summer I had a nice cool beer from both tastes....that bottle opener is a nice idea to make it for the next summer to be ready....hahaha Thanks man for sharing VOTED!!!! of course!</p>
<p>Now you guys just need some decent beer. ;)</p>
You mean not just this dirty water we were using :)
<p>Heh... there is a blast from the past! I worked on those back in the mid 80's and programmed them with an Apple IIc computer... by the way guys, you do realize that the shoulder joint can also move on a Rhino robot? A little bit of kinematic motion study and you could have the opener rotate around the lip of the bottle rather than pushing it so far back. You could also use a triangle brace from the center of your turntable to brace the bottles to keep them from moving so far back. Another thing to do is make the End Of Arm Tooling (your opener) a bit longer to increase the lever action torque without sacrificing motors. An interesting idea but you could do so much more with the equipment I can see.</p>
Haha very cool. Yeah we scavenged this out of the trash and found a few motors and belts dead. We fixed it up best we could with the parts on hand. This project was mainly used to find out what worked and what didn't so that we could use it further in our next project. It will take some work to replace/repair half of the motors and joints. It is a very neat piece of equipment :)
<p>I was wondering if the bottles were just a bit further back would that maybe lessen the recoil, I guess I'd just have to build one and find out.</p><p>Awesome stuff I love it</p>
I think the recoil was primarily due to the way we controlled the motion. We could have fixed it with more time and more bottles :) You are on the right track though with them being further back, the reason we had the motion moving so far was because of the arm originally uprooting the cans and then sliding. After fixing those two problems (washers in the cans to hold them down better) we didnt have the slippage but forgot to update the motion code to stop the recoil.
<p>Awesome! I guess the development went a tad slow because after a round of testing, everyone's inebriated. Unless you manage to find Ballmer's peak :D</p>
<p>You guys are freakin' crazy! I like it, a looooooooooot!!!</p>
<p>Cool idea!</p>

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