Robby the Robot: Fifth in the Tin Can Creation Series
The fun continues…Yesterday I finished construction of Robby the Robot. As in the other Tin Can Creations projects, he is built around an empty Healthy Choice Chicken Noodle Soup can. It’s my activity and I make up the rules. So, I decided to build all my tin can robots using the discarded container of the soup I’ve eaten almost every day for almost 13 years.
Robby’s glass dome is a wide mouth canning jar. His antennas are screw eye bolts fastened to recycled radio knobs hot glued in place. Unlike the previous tin can robots, Robby has a brain under his translucent dome.
The ATtiny85 microprocessor lights up Robby’s LEDs and activates his pager motor. When Robby is switched on his eyes light up along with the two flickering lights in his chest behind the discarded car air freshener. He buzzes in short bursts while at the same time his mouth lights up with blue LEDs. Then, all the lights switch on. Finally, only the three “brain” lights illuminate at the top of his dome and rotate as if he is thinking about something important.
Robby, the real Robby, first appeared in The Forbidden Planet, a science fiction movie in 1956. He was the friendly servant of his creator, Dr. Morbius. He is not the robot from the television series Lost in Space. They are easily confused; the B-9 robot from that show is similar in many ways. Both robots have retractable arms and a synthetic voice that modulates the light in the chest. Since both robots were designed by Rober Kinoshita, it is not surprising that they had some similar traits. However, there are major differences. Aside from being 10 years older, Robby’s legs consisted of stacked spheres and they moved independently. Both robots appeared together in the Lost in Space episode #20 “War of the Robots.” In that episode, Robby was definitely evil complete with laser weaponry.
This has been a fun project. The next step is to build up the capability to produce similar tin can robots at Camp Quest.