Simple Bots: Scrub





Introduction: Simple Bots: Scrub

About: My name is Randy and I am a Community Manager in these here parts. In a previous life I had founded and run the Instructables Design Studio (RIP) @ Autodesk's Pier 9 Technology Center. I'm also the author ...

As part of my effort to make our life easier through robotics, I have made a low-cost cleaning bot called Scrub Bot. This state of the art cleaning robot is great at polishing floors and shining glass tables (provided that you soap it up first). It also disperses small particulates evenly across your floor in such a manner that your home may look cleaner than it actually is. That's not all! Thanks to its unique non-patented frisbee design, Scrub Bot allows you to easily add all of your favorite thingamajigs and what-nots directly to the bot without wondering where to put them. Create a circuit to toggle each motor independantly for a more "intentionally driven" effect. What are you waiting for? Make one today! Everyone, but your pets, will thank you.

Step 1: Go Get Stuff

You will need:

(x1) Frisbee
(x3) Scrubber brushes
(x3) Adjustable tracks
(x2) Computer fans (of the same size)
(x1) 9V battery connector
(x1) 9V battery
(x6) 1-1/2" bolts
(x18) nuts for 1-1/2" bolts
(x6) 1/2" bolts and nuts
(x1) a bunch of small zip ties

Step 2: Drill Holes

Drill holes in the end of each scrubber brush such that you can later bolt on the adjustable track parallel along its length.

You can use the ends of the track as a drilling guide.

Step 3: Attach the Track

Place 1-1/2" bolts down through the adjustable track such that the middle slider part is facing upwards.

Insert one or two nuts to space the track off of the scrubber brush in such a way that the middle slider can move freely.

Insert the bolts into the hole on the scrubber brush and fasten it on with another nut.

Step 4: Mark for Drilling

Place the slider bracket flush with the edge of the frisbee and make marks for drilling.

These marks should be made in such a way that it splits the frisbee into even thirds.

Step 5: Drill

Drill holes in the frisbee with an 1/8" drill bit.

Step 6: Fasten

Flip the frisbee upside down and tightly fasten the middle sliders to the frisbee using 1/2" nuts and bolts.

The brushes should now be acting to create a tripod to support the frisbee.

Step 7: Vibrating Motors

Turn your fans into vibrating motors by cutting off some of the fan blades.

You should try to avoid making them evenly symmetrical by cutting off the fan blades in a different pattern on each fan. This will give it a little bit more of a unique mobility.

Step 8: Zip Tie

Zip tie the 9V battery between the two fans such that the fan brackets are facing inwards and the rotors are facing outwards, such that they can spin uninhibited.

Also, you may want to consider connecting them together in such a way that the wiring on each motor, is roughly across from each other.

If done right, the 9V battery should be held firmly in place and the motors should spin freely.

Trim off any excess zip tie bits when you are done.

Step 9: Wire It Up

Cut off the motor connectors. Strip back the wire insulation and twist together the red wires from both fans with the red wire from the battery connector. Do likewise with all of the black wires.

You may want to solder them and cover them with electrical tape for a more reliable connection.

Step 10: Drill More Holes

Drill a series of 8 holes such that you can later pass a zip tie through the frisbee and through each corner of the fan motor and then back through the frisbee.

Use your fan assembly as a guide for drilling the holes.

Step 11: Put It All Together

Zip tie each corner of the the fan assembly to the frisbee using the holes you drilled in Step 10. Trim off the excess zip ties when you are done.

Step 12: Get Going

Plug in the battery and you are ready to clean.

Placing the brushes in differing positions creates different patterns of motion.

Try experimenting.



  • Creative Misuse Contest

    Creative Misuse Contest
  • Water Contest

    Water Contest
  • Clocks Contest

    Clocks Contest

104 Discussions

Search up Stanley Universal Friction Lid Support or search up adjustable lid supports

Hey, is there a video showing how this scrub bot works?

Cool! Do you have a picture of it?

No, sorry, i forgot to take a photo of it and it is getting marked at the Victorian state science thing! I got into state level with this project. Thank you so much. I changed a few things like:we couldn't find the tracks, so we used velcro, then the velcro wouldn't stick th=o the frisbee properly, so we had to drill the velcro to the frisbee, then we added another battery because it wasn't moving enough so we added the extra battery. I got an A+ for school and got the best out of our school and got to state level, thanks again for making this!

Cool. Glad you made it work for you.

I'm having trouble finding "scrubber brushes" that aren't like to big can you tell me where you got yours?

2 replies

I got mine from bunnings hardware

I got mine from bunnings hardware

hi, awesome bot, i was making it for my science talent search for school and couldn't fine the adjustable supports on the online ace hardware! I need something by the 18th of May Australian time, so just wondering if anyone had anything i could use instead of the adjustable tracks or something simple to make in that time! Thanks

can the adjustable tracks be replaced by something else?

would it be better if i add another Frisbee on top to cover up the fan just in case of emergencies and id so how would i add it on.

is there another name for the adjustable tracks?
or any substitute ?
cause i've been to ace hardware and they dont even know what that thing is.
it's really hard to find it here in philippines.

2 replies

It is called an adjustable support. They are use for things like holding up chest lids that pivot upwards or window panes.

It appears to have Ace part #5300421

Here is a photo.