3D Printed Humanoid Robot for Under 1000.00 USD

About: Mike's Bio: He is a computer programmer by day and an amateur roboticist by night. Mike and his humanoid robot Boomer have competed in the last six Robogames and have won multiple bronze, silver and gold met...

This idea was born from my first 3D printed Humanoid robot project. My 3D printed DARwIn-OP clone. I learned a lot when doing this project and I am still working on making this robot better. My project had one major flaw though. At 6000.00 to 7000.00 USD per robot few people could duplicate my project. After thinking about this problem and seeing the work being done on Jimmy the 21st century robot and the Robosavvy Humanoid Robot design contest. I decided to start this project. I also decided to break it down in steps to make it easier on myself.Step one: use as much off the shelf parts as I could to get the robot up and working.Step two: Find ways to improve the robot and make it cheaper.Step three: Experiment with and open source the project to see if other people could duplicate the project. As this was one of the major goals of the project. To make humanoid robots cheaper and more accessible to the public.

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Step 1: Parts List and Where to Buy

Robot cost break down:

AX-12A servos (18x37.42 = 673.56)

CM-904a servo controller (1 x 15.00 = 15.00)

Raspberry Pi, high level brain (1 x 40.00 = 40.00)

Raspberry Pi camera, for vision (1 x 30.00 = 30.00)

11.1 volt battery (1 x 29.90 = 29.90)

Bioloid Bushing set (1 x 4.99 = 4.99)

Bioloid Bolt and Nut set (1 x 23.40 = 23.40)

3 pin Bioloid servo cable pack(1 x 34.90=34.90)

2.2 ibs spool of abs plastic (2 x 31.99 = 63.98)

Servo bracket STLs free download.

Control software free download.

Total for robot (915.73 USD)

Possible Upgrades:

GS-12 2-axis gyro Sensor (1x 34.90 = 34.90)

Zigbee 110 wireless module (1x49.90= 49.90)

Bioliod Boomerang remote control (1x39.90=39.90)

DMS-80 IR distance sensor (1x14.90=14.90)

IR sensor (3x5.95=17.85)

Link to buy.

CM-530 (1x99.90=99.90)

AX Dynmaixel servo manager kit (1x90.95=90.95)

3d printer (1,000 to 3,000 USD)

Link to Trossen's Robotics.

Link to Robotis

Link to the Afina

Step 2: 3D Printers

I use the UP! Plus 3d printer version 1.2 but you can use your favorite 3d printer or 3d printing service.

Step 3: Parts Files and Creating .STL Files

You can download most of the part files from the Robotis and Trossen websites or you can downloaded them from my Thingiverse page. I use AutoDesk Inventor to create my .STL files.

Thingiverse link

Bioloid link

Trossen link.

Step 4: Printing Parts

You can use your own 3d printer or a 3d printing service.

Step 5: Assembly the Robot

Step 6: Test the Robot

Step 7: Future Upgrades or Step 2

Add the Raspberry Pi and Pi camera to make the robot smarter.

Add sensors like IR and sonic for obstacle avoidance.

Zigbee for remote control.

Step 8: Make It Cheaper

Use the OpenCM controller instead of the CM-530. That will save almost 100.00 USD.

I am still working on this Instructable and will add more to this part in the future.

Step 9: Open Source the Design

I will use this Instructable and my Thingiverse page to update my changes and upgrades to this project.

Step 10: Conculsion

I am hoping that I can use the advances in cheap 3d printers and the increasing access to 3d printing services to make robots cheaper. Cheaper robots should then make robots more accessible to more and more people. Which is the main goal of this project.

1 Person Made This Project!


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27 Discussions


3 years ago

Great instructable, but I don't get it. You can buy bioloid for 1200$. So you saved 200$?

Hi, your robot is really advanced, it's one of the best that I have seen, its design is much better than Nao, and can do things that it can't do.My council to you is to buy it for about 5000 dollars, and make a new one for you and win 4000 dollars.Haha!

2 replies

3 years ago

For stronger, much cheaper servers look into LD-2015. Their stall torque is 17kg:

LD-2015 High Torque Metal Gear Digital Robo-Soul Servo Two-axis Servo for Robot


- Speed: 0.16sec/60°7.4V

- Stall torque: 15kg/cm 6V; 17kg/cm 7.4V

- Working voltage: 6-7.4V

- Empty load current: 100mA

- Cable length:30cm

- Size: 40*20*40.5mm

- Weight: 60g

- Accessories included: Main shaft horn(4mm thickness), countershaft horn(2mm thickness)


1 reply

Reply 3 years ago

I am going to say with the AX-12As, as they are better servos!

12V15.3 kgcm
212 ozin59 RPM
0.169sec/60°55g32 x 50 x 40 mm0.29°1/254300° or Continuous Turn9-12V (Recommended Voltage 11.1V)900 mA50 mA-5°C ~ 70°CTTL Half Duplex Async Serial254 valid addresses7343bps ~ 1MbpsYesYesYesYesYesPlastic Gears and BodyCored MotorAX-12A manual

4 years ago

I'm thinking of making this and there is no way I can afford the servos what's a cheaper alternative


4 years ago on Introduction

how do you control the robot using raspberry pi? are there any codes available on the net?


4 years ago

hey bro plz help me. i am not finding the foot in the download link that u gave plz ll u send me taht to my email address. navneetcsgowda@gmail.com

1 reply

may i have the program for the raspberry pi. i am sufferin to make it possible.pla do somthin abt it. need yr hrlp


5 years ago on Step 6

i love the movements, what's the software behind this?


5 years ago on Step 8

very interesting board, never heard of that before.

How does this robot compare to your Darwin clone? I see you're using more generally styled servo brackets, ax12a servos rather than mx28t's, and simpler electronics. So what were the trade-offs? This seems to compare nicely to Darwin in terms of price vs performance.

2 replies

It compares better in price but in performance no. The DARwIn-OP totally out classes it.

The key to all robots is it's servos and the MX-28T are a lot more advance then the AX-12As.

The second most important part of the DARwIn is the fit-pc which runs Linux. My new robot only has a arduino like servo controller.

Maybe I can give it a brain with the Intel® Edison?


I would currently start with an odroid u3, this machine is AMAZING (quadcore 1.7 ghz, 2gb ram) and the size of the raspberry pi, costing 60 USD! It can run Android or Linux. Right now, unfortunately, the Arduinos are not up to the task (I have the Mega, the Nano and the Due), let's see what the Arduino Tre will bring.

andrea biffi

5 years ago on Introduction

that's beautiful, but it's more a gallery of images and videos than a step to step guide... do you plan to add more details to make the project reproducible?