Electronics Project: Cyclops Walkbot

Difficulty: Beginner
Assembly Time: 2 hours
Designer: Bob Twiggs
Knowledge Required: Basic electronics and soldering skills.

This mini desk top bot is a little hop happy but makes for some good fun. The build is perfect to practice your soldering skills, all while creating a simple, hoppy, happy, pal.

Build your own Cyclops Walkbot

Required tools and components:

3V 165mAh CR-2325 Battery
SPDT Mini Slide Switch
CR-2325 Battery Holder
Printed Circuit Board
T1-3/4 Red LED
22AWG Hook-up Wire
3V DC Vibrating Motor
680Ω Resistor 3/4 Watt 5%
Soldering iron and solder
Wire strippers

Cyclops Walkbot kit
Cyclops Walkbot Kit

Cyclops Walkbot PCB
Cyclops Walkbot PCB

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1 – Verify PCB

Before soldering everything, it's very important to identify which side of the PCB is top and bottom. The top of the PCB has the words "Cyclops", "M1", "R1"; and the bottom just has "+" and "-" markings (pictured above).

Step 2 – Vibrating Motor

On the top of the PCB, there is a label M1. Take the vibrating motor and make sure it is in the correct orientation. Solder the four leads of the motor to the board.

Step 3 – Solder the LED

Before soldering the LED (to the top of PCB), you must position it with the correct polarity. The LED slot has a circle frame labeled D1. Inside the circle there is a square pad and a circle pad, to correctly place the LED with the correct polarity, the LED with the shorter leg should be soldered in the square pad and the longer leg in the circle pad.

Step 4 – Solder the Resistor

The 680Ω resistor (top of PCB) will be soldered in the rectangle frame labeled R1. Polarity is not a concern for resistors.

Step 5 – Solder the Switch

The miniature switch (top of PCB) is labeled "SW" and should be soldered in the correct configuration. Make sure the switch faces outward from the PCB, not inward.
Switch on PCBMiniature switch in place on PCB

Step 6 – Solder the Battery Holder

Before soldering the battery holder (bottom of PCB), look for a "+" symbol and "-" symbol. The battery holder must be soldered with the correct polarity in order for it to work. The metal piece that shows the "+" symbol on the battery holder which will have its metal sticking out should be soldered at the "+" symbol, and the minus at the other metal sticking out.

Step 7 – Insert the Battery

The 3V CR2325 Button Cell Battery must be inserted with the correct polarity in order for it to work. On the battery holder, you should see a metal minus symbol flat on the surface and the metal plus symbol dangling in the air (directly above the minus symbol). The CR2325 battery must be inserted in between the two metals and the polarity must be placed just as it is indicated, plus side up (visible) and minus side down.
Battery InstalledBattery installed and leg soldered

Step 8 – Solder the Legs

Cut four 1-1/2" length pieces. Use wire strippers to remove the part of insulation and reveal the copper wires, then solder them into the corners from the underside of the PCB. Make sure the legs are fairly straight, and now you can slide the switch and enjoy your new Cyclops Walkbot!

About the designer

Bob Twiggs Professor Twiggs is a professor of Astronautical Engineering at Morehead State University in Kentucky there he develops curriculum on designing, building and operating small space experiments. He also helped to develop the original concepts for the Cyclops, CricketSat, CanSat, CubeSat and the PocketQube for educational applications for use in space from using party balloons for fun to real rocket launches into earth orbiting space. Prior to Morehead State Univwersity, Twiggs was a consulting professor of Aeronatutics and Astronautics at Stanford University for 14 years. Prof. Twiggs is also passionately involved in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) outreach to primary schools.

In 2010, Space News selected him as one of 10 international space professionals "That Made a Difference in Space". The other two selected from the United States were Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX and the President, Barack Obama.

Read more about the Cyclops Designer.