CandyBot V1.0




Build a motorized candy dispenser from stuff around the house!

Our maker group - the Distributed Hacker/Maker Network (Appleton, WI) - worked together to design and build CandyBot. For this "make" we had kids ranging from ages 5-13 design and build 90% of the bot.

3/28/2011 Edit: This instructable was made for the National Robotics Week contest and was targeted at the 12 and under age group.

We used:

CD jewel cases
Empty tissue box
Plastic cracker/cookie jar
Plastic drink mix canister
A wheel + motor assembly from a broken iRobot Scooba
9 volt battery
Piece of wooden dowel
Paper towel tube
A box cutter/razor knife
Lots and lots of hot glue!

Step 1: Step 1 - Assemble the Base

Disassemble the CD jewel cases. Arrange them in a mock-up that will later support the candy canister and tissue box.
When you have an arrangement that works, begin carefully hot gluing (with the help of an adult) the jewel cases together leaving a channel for the candy chute (paper towel tube). You'll need to hold each gluing until it has cooled enough to hold.
Have a grown up use the razor knife to cut a channel in the base of the tissue box, leaving the back edge connected and creasing it down to allow the candy to slide down.
Attach the tissue box to your newly glued jewel case frame using hot glue.

Step 2: Step 2 - the Candy Canister

Place two jewel case pieces about 2 centimeters apart. Turn over the candy canister and place it on top of the 2 jewel cases. Hot glue the canister to the jewel cases.
Cut or drill a hole into the top of the candy canister to pour the candy in.
Hot glue the canister assembly to the top of the tissue box.

Step 3: Step 3 - Twisty Tube

Cut a hole into the back of the tissue box large enough to pass the plastic drink mix canister (twisty tube) through.
Remove the lid from the twisty tube. Unscrew the small phillips screw holding the wheel onto the iRobot motor. Punch a hole in the center of the lid. Screw the lid onto the wheel/motor assembly. Place the lid back onto the twisty tube. Hot glue it on tight.
Cut a 2 centimeter by 4 centimeter rectangle in the side of the twisty tube. This allows the candy to fall into the twisty tube as it rotates around and also allows the candy to exit the tube as it rotates down. The candy then drops into the channel cut into the base of the tissue box.
Make 4 small holes to hold 2 sections of wooden dowel that the twisty tube will rest upon. Insert the wooden dowels.
Pass the twisty tube through the back of the tissue box and along the dowels.

Step 4: Step 4 - the Battery

Attach 2 wires from the 9 volt battery posts to the positive and negative wires from the motor. The motor should turn the twisty tube now mounted within the tissue box.
We also added a momentary button that makes the CandyBot dispense candy as long as you hold it down.

Step 5: Step 5 - Candy Time!

Pour your favorite candy into the top canister. Place a bowl beneath the exit chute. Press the button, get some candy!

National Robotics Week Robot Contest

First Prize in the
National Robotics Week Robot Contest



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    12 Discussions


    8 years ago on Step 5

    Great job Mike! And as a parent, I appreciate loud sounds accompanying food-storage access attempts!

    1 reply

    2 years ago

    CAAAAAAAANDYYYY!!!!!!!!!!! (Thought that goes through the head of every 5 year-old that looks at this machine


    2 years ago

    CAAAAAAAANDYYYY!!!!!!!!!!! (Thought that goes through the head of every 5 year-old that looks at this machine


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    We filled it full with M&M candies and Skittles (separately) and there was no problem with the frame.

    Sometimes however, the roller tube gets stuck and needs a manual twist with the weight of a full jar.