I was playing around on the Instructables app last week, and saw that there was an Instructables robot contest. I said to myself well this should be something fun to do, and try my hand at one of the contest. So looking around for what i could make it out of, I found a coil of old 1/4od copper soft tubing, I had left over from a previous project i had worked on at work. I gathered my copper and some copper fittings, along with my trusty propane torch, and got to work.
Step 1: Gathering Tools and Materials
Tools- propane torch
pipe cutter that can cut 1/4"od copper tubing
Materials- 1/4"od soft tubing copper
I happend to have a few boxes of both 90s and tees
The first thing I did was to cut and shape the robot. I decided to do this before soldering everything together. I did this free hand with no template, besides just eyeing out where everything needed to be to match up to the Instructables robot. In hind sight i should of printed out a template, my shape would of been a little better.
Step 3: Clean and Solder
1/4" copper is pretty small you don't need a lot of heat or solder, but you still need to clean it so the solder will take. You can clean it with a piece of emery cloth or a wire brush. Once you have cleaned the ends of pipe that you plan on soldering, and the 90s or tees that you are soldering, then add flux to inside of your fittings, and then to your pipe. After all that you are ready to start soldering your robot together.
Step 4: Arms
This was a tough step for me. Trying to figure out how to bend the arms with out making them look too out of wack. What i decided to do was to try bending the pipe in a small pipe bender, that i picked up from my local hardware store. I started bending the pipe until I felt i was at my desired bend, and then did the same for the other arm.
Step 5: Making the Face
This was a fun step bringing the Instructables robot to life. I started with the eyes I cut in two tees on both sides of the head, where i wanted the eyes to sit. Then I cut two short pieces of pipe, and then two 90s looking out at you. I added a cap on one eye to make it look like one of the eyes was larger. I then took some regular 1/4" pipe, which is smaller then 1/4"od, and flattened it. I then tacked it above the eyes to make the eye brow. I then took another piece of 1/4" pipe and flattened it to make a mouth, and tacked that to the frame. After that it started to look like something, but it wasn't finished. So I added some antanni. I did this by taking 3/8 caps and tacking them to the tees at the eyes, and then added 1/4 pipe to the caps.
Step 6: Front Buttons and Box
I didn't really know how I wanted to do this step. I thought of a few different ways to do this, but none of them seemed like they would work, so i figured out one that wouldn't look to awful. What i did here was cut in a tee in the middle of the neck. I ran a short piece of pipe down to a tee. I ran two short pieces of both ends of the tee, to two 90s facing out. I then tacked 3, 3/8 caps to the 90s and then one to the center of the tee. For the box underneath the caps i took 4, 90s and soldered them together with 2 long pieces of pipe horizontal and two short pieces vertically. I then tacked it underneath the tee with the cap.
Step 7: Stand and Finish
So have a fully built Instructables robot, with no way to make it stand. So I looked around in my scrap pile, and found a piece of 1-1/4" copper pipe. I cut it to the length that i wanted and then took my 3lb sledge to it, and flattened it. After flattening the pipe i cleaned it up. I then tacked the pieces of pipe to the bottom of the robot. It held and didn't fall apart so i cleaned everything up and have it up on a shelf in our garage.