Making 3D printed robots

written by billy November 7, 2015


The Fairfield County Makers Guild (a non profit organization I helped found) has been teaching classes to teens at the Norwalk CT public library to build Sumo bots.

A sumo robot competition is an event using robots you build which is a modern adaptation of the tradition Japanese Sumo wrestlers. Two robots compete in a head-to-head match following the basic system of traditional human sumo matches. Robots are allowed no weapons, and are not allowed to flip each other. The sole purpose is a pushing match between the two robots to force the other from the arena.

In these classes children learn the following principles as they progress towards their first Sumo bot.

Intro to Arduino and Sumo Robots

In this class we will review the Arduino micro-controller, programming it, and the components which make up a Sumo robot. I will provide 3D printed parts to make the core of the robot and we will build the base of the robot, attach the Arduino and verify it works.

Design and mechanicssumoRobot03

In this class the focus will be on the mechanics of the robot to include different types of wheels, motors, how they work, power management and connecting to the Arduino and programming them t move the robot.

Sensors and accessories 

Sensors allow the robot to make intelligent decisions when in competition with other Sumo robots. This class will review the different types of sensors one can use, strategies for placement and how to program them for control by the Arduino.

Finishing touches and strategies.

In this class we will finalize any coding or hardware on the robots. I will also bring in a Sumo Robot ring where the robots can go into competition with each other.

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