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Bolt Bots are perfect for aspiring roboticists

Arduino TeamMay 17th, 2023

While it is easier now than ever before, getting into robotics is still daunting. In the past, aspiring roboticists were limited by budget and inaccessible technology. But today the challenge is an overwhelming abundance of options. It is hard to know where to start, which is why Saul designed a set of easy-to-build and affordable robots called Bolt Bots.

There are currently five different Bolt Bot versions to suit different applications and you can assemble all of them with the same set of hardware. Once you finish one, you can repurpose the components to make another. The current designs include a large four-leg walker (V1), a tiny four-leg walker (V2), a robot arm (V3), a car (V4), and a hanging plotter that can draw (V5). They all have a shared designed language and utilize 3D-printed mechanical parts with off-the-shelf fasteners.

Every robot has an Arduino Micro board paired with an nRF24L01 radio transceiver module for control. Users can take advantage of existing RC transmitters or build a remote also designed by Saul. The other components include servo motors, an 18650 lithium battery, and miscellaneous parts likes wires and screws. Some of the Bolt Bots require different servo motors, like continuous-rotation and mini 1.8g models, but most of them are standard 9g hobby servo motors.

Because there are five Bolt Bot variations that use the same components, this is an awesome ecosystem for getting started in robotics on a budget — especially for kids and teens.