Make funny, scary, silly vibrating bot creatures with little more than connectors, cable ties and electrical wire. The bots in the pictures and video are just examples of what you can make. Your imagination is the limit. Thanks to the versatility of connectors, cable binders and electrical wire, the possibilities are virtually endless:
No video? Have a look at it here...
Here's a video of the creatures filmed at 300 frames per second. Looks pretty dramatic on occasion :-)
Making vibro-creatures is most certainly a nice project to with kids of 6 years and up, since the tools, materials and skills needed are very basic. So, a really low-treshold-high-impact project for kids of all ages. I hope you like it. If you make a vibro-creature yourself, please post a pic of it in the comments :-)
Update Sept. 1st 2013: The scary vibrobots are now named Bibberbeest. And, I made a brain for them, so you can switch on a Bibberbeest with a standard remote control!
I did a lot of workshops with kids, making Bibberbeests. Here's an impression:Tools needed:
Wire stripper Knife or firm sciccors Materials:
- Small screwdriver
- Multitool, or:
- Needlenose pliers
- Cutting pliers
- Connectors (8 to 18 stubs for a creature?)
- 20-60 cm electrical wire (the kind used in the electrical wiring in houses, with a solid core)
- 2-12 cable binders, different sizes and colors
- Double sided foam tape
- An electric motor that runs on 1,5 Volt DC. I used these, from Farnell. Motors are expensive if you buy them by piece, so if you have to order just one, try to harvest one from discarded toys instead.
- 1,5 V AA battery
- AA battery holder
Around €3,50 per beast if you have to buy a motor. Harvest a motor from junk toys and save €2,-Time needed:
I make a bot creature in around 15 minutes. I didn't do this with kids yet, my guess is they'll need 45 minutes or so...Tips for making the bots:
Tips for tuning:
- I fixed the battery holder onto the connectors with foam tape. That works well and makes the batteryholder removable.
- The black electrical wire fits through the connector when the screws are "turned up" completely. So, there's no real need to strip the wire.
- The previous makes it possible to wind the wire through a strip of connectors as a spiral. I did this with the creature in picture 5.
- The inside of a connector-stub comes in handy to make a "tail" on the motor shaft.
- To remove the inside of a connector, turn the screws loose and remove them. You can push out the connectors' inside-part easily.
The creatures' movements are pretty unpredictable. You'll have to tweak and experiment to make the bots move the way you like. Experiment with just about any property of the creature you made:
The new Lego: connectors, wire and cable ties
- The length of your creatures "legs"
- The form and length of the motor's tail
- The added weight to the motor's tail (inside of connectors, a complete connector stub, etc.)
- The location of the battery and the motor: By replacing the battery or the motor, you change the distribution of weight. This has a profound impact on the way the creature moves
This is my third project that heavily relies on connectors, tieraps and wires as a "construction toy" (have a look at Blinky the LED pet
and the Blinky Dragonfly
). Wire, connecors and tie-raps are pretty generic and obtainable everywhere. The versatility of this stuff really amazes me! So this won't be my last connector-wire-tie based project :-)
Enjoy building Beasts.Make a creature yourself and earn a 3 month Pro Membership!
I'll reward the first three posts that include a picture.