item # n/a - custom built

image missing

This (obviously) isn't a commercial built robot, but I couldn't not include him. We call him PumpkinHead, because, well, his head looks like a pumpkin. And he was built right before Halloween.

The main circuit that control his facial features was actually designed to be built into a wooden box with only the facial LEDs. The circuit design came from the July '94 issue of Electronics Now. The features go through a wide range of emotions, the rate of which can be varied individually for the eye brows, the eyes and the mouth. As soon as I can get the pages scanned, I will place a copy here so you can build your own.

I wanted something more, though. Nothing was really planned. All of the parts just came together as it was built. After we (my girlfriend helped with the electronics portion) etched, drilled and built the circuit board, I looked all over the shop for a piece of translucent colored plexiglass. Not finding any that looked right, I found a turn signal lens from a motorcycle that was the exact size. As an added bonus, the small square prisms in the lens seem to help diffuse the LED light. The power connector, which we ran through the top of the head adds to the pumpkin effect as a stem.

The main body is a large flat heat sink with the feet being two (much) smaller heat sinks. The legs are made from heavy duty lawnmower springs. A weedeater donated the arms and the hands - made from two throttle cables. The AA battery pack is bolted to his back like a backpack. I did have a bolo tie on him that I'd made out of wire and a button cell battery, but we found the bow tie you see in a bag with three or four others at the local Thrift Store for like fifty-nine cents.

This was my first real attempt at building something like this. I hope that you like it and maybe it'll encourage you to build your own little friend. If you do, I'd love to see photos!

Year Released: October 2008
Original Price: n/a

Technical Specifications:
Main "Processor": CD40106B Hex Schmitt Trigger
Power Supply: 4 x AA batteries

Dimensions: 13¾" tall x 3½" wide
                  (not including arms)
Weight: 11.9 ounces