Introduction: Cool ROBOT: With Magical LED Powers

About: I like to build, create, and invent new things to use in life. Sometimes I like to share them with others, that's why I joined Instructables. :-)

This is my Instructable of how to build a Cool Robot with magical LED powers.

This design is entirely mine I did not base it off of anyone elses plans. I just started making it in Google Sketchup and it evolved into what it is.

I initially called this robot  a WOABOT. What the heck is a WOABOT you ask?

WOABOT stand for

Wood = WO
and = A
Robot = BOT


What does my Cool Robot with magical LED powers do?
I'm so glad you asked! 
Ok well first it's magical because it looks so cool in the dark.

Cool Robot/WOABOT doesn't move around the room, at least not this version yet. He does look extremely cool! It is a multifunctional base for other projects. It's uses are quite diverse, for instance; The original idea was to have the LED's wired to my PC sound system and they were supposed to flash to variations in voltage of music or sounds. Currently I have them wired to stay solidly lit off a 12 volt transformer.

Here are a few other ideas I came up with which Cool Robot/WOABOT could be used.
It can be used as:
  • a money bank,
  • a storage area to hide valuables,
  • or contain an external CD-ROM case (see the instrcutables robot belly),
  • you may also use it as a PC camera mount by installing webcam components.
  • another thing you could do, and is one of my favorite ideas, is to install some speakers on the body to make an external PC speaker system box,
  • or you could just do whatever you wanted to with it.
 It is very simple to build and I would love to see someone else make it out out cardboard or Styrofoam. Adobe would be cool too, but would just dirty the place up, you could call it ADOBOT, but people would get it confused with the transformers.

You will find that a lot of the parts on WOABOT are interchangeable, such as the feet, arms, legs, shoulder sockets and neck. However they are not all assembled in the same order. Make sure you read the text and view the pictures on assembly methods. 

Now lets get started go ahead to the next step,

Step 1: Safety

Safety info:

There are a lot of safety aspects you need to be aware of if you build this like I did.

1. Electrical Hazards- Don't fry yourself, duhh.....
2. Pneumatic Hazards - Don't shoot yourself with a nail gun or stick the air hose to your ears.
3. Sharps Hazard - I used different saw tools with lots of sharp teeth.
4. Flying Debris Hazard - Use eye protection.  Can you guess why?
5. Hearing Damage Hazard - Use ear protection when operating loud machinery, or the wife's around.
6. Idiot protection - Keep others out of your work area while using all of your cool tools.
7. Any Other Hazards - If I haven't named it before it goes here.

Oh, I also wear work gloves a lot, I hate splinters.

Lets move on to the next step, make sure you don't trip over anything (because you are stepping you know)

Step 2: Materials and Supplies

For materials I planned on using 1/4 MDF, but Home Depot doesn't carry it and I don't even know if 1/4 MDF is even made. Instead, I had scrap 1/2 inch press board laying around so that is what I used . Your measurements may be a little off if you use something thicker like I did. You will need to adjust as you build, which is also what I did.
  • Pressboard: about a half sheet
  • I used my pneumatic nails for my pneumatic gun. you could use small nails and a hammer
  • Elmer's wood glue
  • Some left over speaker wire
  • I had some old LED windshield washer lights which have been laying around for a couple years so I finally put those to use.
  • I bought two micro LED flashlights from Harbor Freight for $1.29 each.
  • Ryobi Drill and drill bits, for drilling holes
  • Ryobi Table saw
  • An old 12 volt/110 power transformer
  • Black wire tubing wrap
  • Wire power taps
  • 3.5 mm female headphone port.
  • 3.5 mm male headphone jack.
Next step, lets get to buiilding

Step 3: Measure X 2 and Cut 1 Time...or More Than One Time If Your Dumb Like Me

Lay your material out in front of you. Using the measurement layout table I provided draw up your cut lines on your material, adjust as necessary as you work through the project.

Make sure your measurements are correct, or what you want,  then cut.

Cutting out your pieces will help you project move a little quicker.

I even labeled parts on the layout table A,B,C, etc. 

You will have

(1) 4 x 6.5 Face of head (A)

(2) 4 x 4.5 Side of head (B)

(1) 3.5 x 6 Back of head (C)

(2) 4.25 x 6 Bottom and top of head (D)

(1) 8 x 8 Front body panel (E)

(2) 7.75 x 8 Side body panel (F)

(1) 7.5 x 7.75 Top and rear body panel (G)

(1) 7.5 x 7.5 Bottom body panel (H)

(8) 2 x 6 Arm leg parts (I) (oops I only put 6 on the pic be aware of this, see the picture)

(8) 1.5 x 5.5 Arm leg parts (J)

(16) 1.5 x 2 Arm, feet, hand neck parts (K)

(8) 1.5 x 1.5 Arm, feet, hand neck parts (L)

(10) 2 x 2 Arm leg neck parts (M)

Step 4: Assymble the Feet

In this step we will assemble the feet. Just so you know the arms and the legs are the design, just put together different order.

Below you will see I color coded the pieces for easy identification and placement. I really like goggle Sketchup there is so much you can do with it.

You will need the following parts: (refer to the cut diagram for part identification) I. J. K. L. M.

I referenced the parts on the photos below.

You can assemble in any order you want just so long as you can use your air nail gun to shoot the nails into the parts, so think ahead. If you are using only glue it will be easier.

The feet sections also happen to be the shoulder socket section, so they are interchangeable.

After you begin assembling the feet you will need to find the top of each foot and measure out where you want to place your L.E.D.'s I centered mine back about a half inch from the edge.

Drill your hole and try a fit check to ensure proper fit.

Mount the light in the hole and apply some hot glue using... yeah a hot glue gun.

Lets move on to the next step and assemble the legs and attach the feet.

Step 5: Assemble the Legs and Attach the Feet

In this step we will assemble the legs and attach the feet.

The legs go together pretty easily. Use the pictures as a reference guide.

When assembling the legs attach the bottom piece to the front panel then the side pieces.

Make sure not to put the rear panel of the legs on you will need it for access just in case you have to troubleshoot the LED wires.

When you have the legs together except for the back panel you will need to drill ha hole in the center of the top panel. See the 6th and 7th picture below.

Once you have this done attach the feet to the legs with glue and the nail gun.

Step 6: Build the Body and Attach the Legs

In this step we will build the body.

You will need to have your body parts (lol) in hand.

Assemble the body but do not install the back panel of the body, it will be installed later. This is because we will need to work in side the body and if we close it up we can't work on it.

(1) 8 x 8 Front body panel (E)

(2) 7.75 x 8 Side body panel (F)

(1) 7.5 x 7.75 Top and rear body panel (G)

(1) 7.5 x 7.5 Bottom body panel (H)

When you are finished assembling the body grab the bottom of the body

Once you have it find the center and make some measurements on where you want to place the legs. See the photos.

When you have the area marked out to place your legs then you need to mark where you will drill your holes to route the wires.

Drill your holes so you can route your wires for the LED lights.

Route your wires.

Then using glue and your nail gun install/attach the legs.

Lets go to the next step.

Step 7: Assemble the Shoulders and Arms

In this step we will assemble the shoulders and arms.

It is almost the same thing as the legs because all of the parts are the same.

The major difference is that the arms will be on the side of the body instead of the front like the legs.

If you have not already done so build your shoulder socket just like in the 6th picture

Once that is done use a Part M on the cut list and place it on a Part I and draw a reference line as in picture 7and 8. This will be the placement line when you connect the shoulder socket and the arm together.

After you have your reference line draw and X as in picture 9 and drill a hole to route your wires through.

Step 8: On With His Head,.... Bt Only Partially

On this step you can build the most of the head before attaching it to the body. But then we will attach it.

I have to apologize, you will need to use the photos as references  to see the assembly of the head.

I don't have the google sketchup files for the head. I lost the flash drive they were on before I finished the Instructable. I took some  new photos of the head and will write some text instructions to assemble it.

1. Take the bottom panel of the head and center it on the neck of WOABOT to get proper placement. On the underside of the panel where it actually sits on the neck use a pencil and sketch and outline of proper placement, this will help you like up the head later.  Do not attach at this time.

2. In the same panel drill a hole down through, where the center of the neck is going to be, so you can run your LED wires for the eyes down into the body to attach them to the power source.

3. Attach the side panels of the head to the base of the head.

4. The front face panel, drill your holes for where you want the eyes to be. Install the housing and LEDs used for the eyes.  I hot glued the housings in place.
I used the micro led flashlights for the housing of the LED lights. I actually replaced the original white LED lights they came with, with  brighter blue LED lights and ran the power cables down through the neck.

5. Now install  the front face panel with the rest of the head housing. BUT do not attach the top of back of the head.

6. At this point route your wires from the LEDs in the head down through the neck and into the body. Use your pencil lines on the bottom of the head and line up the head on the body and  glue and nail the head to the neck by shooting nails from the inside of the head into the neck. This should secure the head very nicely.

7. Make sure you are happy with how the eyes are installed and how the wires are run and test the LEDs before you attach the top and back of the head. 

Lets go on to the next step, 

Step 9: Wires in the Body

Let's bring all of those wires together into a bundle and wire this WOABOT up.

You need your:
  • Speaker wires or what ever type you will be using
  • 3.5 mm female headphone jack
  • Wire taps
Bring your wires together into a nice bundle,, so they are not a spaghetti mess. Make your work look neat. I bundle the left side of the body into one bundle then the same to the right. I tapped the wires together using the wire taps. see the 3rd and 7th pics below for a clearer understanding. 

Attached wires to your headphone jack and connect to the wire bundles.

You will need to drill a hole into the side of the WOABOT so you can have an power port access. Only drill it just big enough where you can just get the headphone port through the body, you don't want it loose, glue it with wood glue to secure it in place.

Next hook up the 12 volt power transformer with a male 3.5 mm head phone jack, plug it in and make sure the lights work. If you are ready then glue and nail the top and back of the head together. You could also put small hinges on the inside of the back of the head so you can have an access panel or secret hiding compartment.

Go ahead and finish installing the rest of the panels on the body and then you are done and its time for the light show!

Lets go to the final step.

Step 10: Powering Up the WOABOT!

Here is our chance to show our brilliance, or rather WOABOTS brilliance.

Plug in your power and enjoy!

What I have really enjoyed is that everyone who has seen it has said they loved it. 

Thanks for reading this Instructable and I hope that if you decide to build a WOABOT, a STYROBOT (styrofoam) , or and ADOBOT (adobe)  that you let me know so I can check it out.

Again, "Thanks for reading!"

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