Introduction: Self Balancing Segway Style Scooter for Under 300.00

Picture of Self Balancing Segway Style Scooter for Under 300.00
I've always wanted a Segway from the first day I saw one, but with the over 6000.00 price tag I couldn't afford one. Thankfully the parts required have come down in price dramatically. I managed to build one for under 300.00. 
here is a list of the most important parts.

1x2" square steel on eBay but mine was scrap we got for free.

Sabertooth 2X25 motor controller from

electric mobility scooter motors ours are from the Jazzy electric chair the sell for 100-150.00 on eBay

5DOF IMU we got from eBay for 25.00

Sealed lead acid batteries 12v from eBay or from hardware store 

Thumb Joystick from spark-fun 3.95

various switches and 10k potentiometers 5.00 from radio shack

code from sci chair instructable

schematic from sci chair instructable


titanren (author)2017-08-19

I can't find the 5 DOF IMU . Can I use 6 DOF IMU instead it .


said19 (author)2017-03-19

hey is there any way that i can get this code workign with mpu6050 because the analoge imu is not availabe in

ihart (author)said192017-04-12


김형진 (author)2016-06-11


we are using 5DOF IMU but gyro ENC-03RC with accelometer ADXL335

but i think you are using gyro IDG500 with accelometer ADXL335...

is this why your code doesn't work with my IMU??

jimkan (author)2015-04-29

Will your code work with MPU6050?

fozz18 (author)jimkan2016-05-03

Tilt adjust is to help Center the balance. Dead man switch shuts everything down if you fall off.

fozz18 (author)jimkan2015-10-04

Thats a digital imu so no it requires different code

adirsingh96 (author)fozz182015-12-10

hey,what is that tilt shifter and dead man switch

김형진 (author)2016-05-03

Hi, i have question.

what is tilt adjust shifter ??

Isn't it needs to lean forward to go forward and lean backward to break?

why do i need tilt adjst switch?

and what is dead man switch for ??

coolal (author)2015-12-09

Can i control and move around using the handlebar?? how would i do this?

thank you

Jaitra (author)2015-09-29

Hey frm where can i get these wheels

fozz18 (author)Jaitra2015-10-04

I got those on ebay. Jazzy electric wheel chair motors

Jaitra (author)Jaitra2015-09-29

Wheels in the image

VinceM10 (author)2015-10-04

Do you have to lean forward to drive? or is it controlled by the joystick

fozz18 (author)VinceM102015-10-04

Yes you lean foward to move foward and back to brake which is regenerative as well as to go backwards

kseskses (author)2014-11-23

send video how to build it please?

how many fast it is?

yosuf.harb (author)2014-11-18

how fast does it go??

Peter2011 (author)2014-10-03

could this be converted to a solo wheel, of course it will require to make the entire thing work by tilt sensor instead, or rather not a lot of retinkering, just need it to work with a single wheel, and a tiltsensor. instead of a analog stick.

fozz18 (author)Peter20112014-10-20

just dont hook up the steering pot and it will do the same thing.

found this for a good price

Charc (author)2014-10-01

Hi! i have two motors 450 Watts 24V, i use the IMU MPU6050, arduino due.

I'm starting with the build of the Segway, not even how to begin, could you help me? Thank you!

jwalter007 (author)2014-06-02

Is the UB1250 12volt 5ah battery shown in your pic the battery that you actually used? I am using those & mine seems severely under powered and looses charge within a few minutes. My bats are new. My motors are the same as yours.

Those batteries get dried out after a while you can recover at least 90% of their charge by opening them up with a razor blade cutting around the flat lid gently prizing it off to get a screwdriver underneath prize the top off remove the white blotting paper then gently vent the rubber plugs by pushing them to one side be careful as the gas in the battery can be under pressure, once you pull the rubber grommets out fill with distilled water(time to defrost a freezer or some ice for some distilled water) each compartment will take between 20 and 30 ml of water if it is really dry, if you continue to try to charge a dry battery it kills the capacity and they end up not accepting a charge at all, Judging from what Ive read here why are people using 24 volt wheelchair/scooter motors with a 12volt battery? its no wonder they are so slow and the batteries don't last long, you will need at least two 12 amp batteries in series to make these scooter motors go faster and longer. have a look at a Motability scooter with its two batteries. Or better still try 2 x 12 volt dc windscreen wiper motors, they make good home made electric scooter/wheelchair motors and only have two connections positive and negative.

I ended up replacing with 2 18amp batts. I wish I would have gone with the 36ah that the scooter actually ships with.

davelayde (author)2014-06-08

can you make a tutorial with coding and stuff?

fozz18 (author)davelayde2014-06-09

the code is provided. its easy to break down and modify.

theradioman (author)2014-05-06

looking at your diagram this design would not work......think you might have the batteries wired up incorrectly

fozz18 (author)theradioman2014-05-06

ya the original author of the picture did that. however most people realize this ahead of time when their building and so far hasnt been an issue

shomas (author)fozz182014-05-21

Just to be clear, seeing as the Sabertooth dual 25A motor driver at maximum can draw 100 amps for a few seconds and 50 amps continuously, and that each battery could supply more than 100 amps, I suspect that the batteries should be wired in series for 24V operation as opposed to wired in parallel for 12V for unnecessary more amperage.

davelayde (author)2014-05-04

Can it turn while standing still?

fozz18 (author)davelayde2014-05-04


jwalter007 (author)2014-04-17

What was your source for wheels? If no source available, can you give the dimensions of the ones you have used?

fozz18 (author)jwalter0072014-04-17

Ebay. Kids quad wheels

jwalter007 (author)fozz182014-04-19

Are they about 14" Diameter?

DR4296 (author)2014-04-17

So, if I go hunting locally for electric wheelchairs to use as parts to build something like this... do I just need to be sure to find an electric wheelchair that has TWO motors and gearboxes? And then raid that also for the batteries and any battery charger the owner might still have?

I vaguely recall reading something elsewhere that said not all electric wheelchairs have two motors; apparently, some get by with a single motor.

I'm kind of curious as to why in most tutorials like this, people are buying the motors, batteries, and any battery charger all separately. ?? As I look over Craigslist and local thrift-stores and estate sales.... just casually... at electric wheelchairs.... seems like for $350-500, I might be able to get an entire used electric wheelchair, with charger.

(I don't know much about dealing with motors, controllers, and electronics like this.)

My goal is to actually build something like this... but it doesn't HAVE to be self-balancing. In fact, I'd like one or two more non-motorized wheels. I want to incorporate it INSIDE a Halloween costume.

habaha1981 (author)2014-04-13

hey sschnack the thick red wire and the thick black wire are the ones you need positive and negative. the other two wires are just for the brake. You must take the brake off for this application. just unscrew the black cap off the end of the motor where the wires go in and unscrew the brake assembly from the motor.

sschnack (author)2014-03-30

Hi, I bought the Jazzy electric chair motors and having trouble finding documentation. There are four wires: red, black, white, and yellow. My guess is red=power, black=ground, white=power brake when 0V, and yellow=?. I am pretty intimidated by these motors so any information and advice I would really appreciate. Thank you so much for posting!

fozz18 (author)2014-03-03

the analog imu's are getting harder to find all the current ones are digitial. I tried to get a programmer to modify the code but they want over a thousand to do it.

ihart (author)fozz182014-03-14

Hi fozz18,

I posted a Segway clone Instructable using a $3 digital IMU. All the code is there. It also uses the less expensive Saber controller. Check it out if interested.

ciuvauva (author)2014-03-09

Hi, very nice

can you tell power rating and voltage rating of jazzy electric motors. From schematics looks like they are 24V . serial battery connection(but you have to swap one battery)

andinh (author)2014-02-12

hi, the 5DOF IMU now is too expensive, can we used others instead?

bremus (author)andinh2014-03-03

I'd think one of the flight control boards used for quad copters could be used. They have 3 axis gyro and accelerators

khyram (author)2013-12-31

can i ask the maximum speed of this diy segway!? thanks

fozz18 (author)2013-10-14

i just designed a printed board that has the imu and plugs for the handlebar controls. Any interest I could ship in the next couple weeks

CUSTOMIZER (author)2013-09-03

PROBELM SOLVED, i had to reverse the motor wires only.

now it balances perfectly but i cant stand on it. there is not enugh power to keep me balanced on it.

do you have any idea how to fix that ?

fozz18 (author)CUSTOMIZER2013-09-03

i need more info about the specs

CUSTOMIZER (author)fozz182013-09-23

Im using 2x24V 250w scooter motors

and scooter sprockets for the tires

And using the same sensor and code as you without changing anything

fozz18 (author)CUSTOMIZER2013-10-06

do you have a picture of your assembled drive? Ideally very small sprocket with the largest drive gear (wheel side) that you can fit that would give you the most torque. the gearing of a pocket bike would be perfect the sprocket is tiny thus plenty of power also. mebe larger motors instead of 250watt mebe 350 watt should also help

CUSTOMIZER (author)fozz182013-10-06

I'm using a pocket bikes tiny gears on the 250w motors and the drive gear on a 16" bicycle wheels.
Can I increase the tourqe from the code? If yes, can you show me how?

I will upload a pic for the drive later


fozz18 (author)fozz182013-10-06

That is also the reason I recommended wheelchair motors they are a worm gear drive that is VERY powerful

CUSTOMIZER (author)fozz182013-10-01

Do you have any idea ?

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