My little Flipbot was made by Tomy in 1984. He has the ability to roll around and turn to the left, whilst constantly spinning his arms aimlessly. The spinning arms return him to an upright position when he falls forward or backwards.

He also has a spring loaded mouth that can hold small objects or notes. The video on the right shows what the Flipbot can do BEFORE my proposed modifications.

Flipbot project02



11th April 2007

The first step towards the completion of this project is gutting my little friend and evaluating the space available for all my electrical goodies. Iíll get to tearing him apart shortly and I will take pictures of the insides before I cause any permanent damage for those who might be interested.

I opened the Flipbot up today and took some snaps of his insides before I gutted him out.  It is really going to be a tight squeeze to fit the basic stamp and other paraphernalia into his little shell. This might be the last bit of work I do on this fella for a while as anything further requires me to have some spare cash and alot of time. Hopefully mid year break from uni will answer the call.

Flipbot inside103

Flipbot inside202

Flipbot gutted02

Flipbot AA02

Theses pitures show the full gear assembly (minus wheels). The motor drives a small worm gear that runs onto the drive shaft for the wheels. The wheels have teeth and run of the two cogs at the ends of the drive shaft.

The shaft driving the arms runs from a cog on the drive shaft. A metal spring clip (which can be seen clipped over the motor) provides tension to prevent the arms slipping backwards, when removing the casing this shot out and hit me in the face...

The picture to the left shows all the gear I stripped out of the geezer. And the pic below shows how much room I have in there relative to a AA battery. Itís gonna be a tight fit!

I would like to strip the guts out of the Flipbot and replace them with a Basic Stamp II module and assorted electronics to achieve the following;

  • IR obstacle avoidance
  • Phototropic behavior
  • Photophobic behavior
  • Sound seeking behavior
  • Heat (human) seeking behavior
  • Autonomous charging
  • Reactions to human touch
  • Night sleep cycle

From what I have been told most of these should be easy to implement once I know how to program the Basic Stamp (I have never even programmed a VCR!!!), fitting it all into a 4Ē high by 3Ē wide robot though might be quite a challenge.

14th April 2007
29th July 2007

No progress on this little fella. I havnít forgotten or abandoned him. I will get to work on this guy as soon as I have the time and cash to do so.

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