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I was playing the old "confuse the cat with a flash-light" game, when I thought that I might like to program a confuse-a-cat robot.

Something, probably with tracks, which can right itself if he flips it over, and which I can program to move randomly around a room, turning at walls, making an occasional sound or flashing a light.

Since I am on a very tight budget, I wondered if there is some cheap kit which I can program ...

Arduino, Raspberry Pi, any platform, so long as it is programmable.

Thanks in advance for your help


[Update] my budget is $50, but the less, the better.

How can I get this unheld? It is held as too broad, but I don't really know what I can say, other than:

  • budget $50
  • programmable
  • autonomous
  • wheeled or tracked
  • can somehow sense obstacles

What more can I add? Battery operated, I guess. I didn't actually state that.

What else? Robust & cat-proof? :-)

  • 2
    What precisely is your budget? There are a multitude of kits out there, but "cheap" may not fit your (broad) requirements. – user1691 Aug 5 '16 at 14:03
  • youtube.com/watch?v=hHIrxL0giJQ seems like an alternative. But I am still looking for a wheeled or tracked robot – Mawg says reinstate Monica Oct 5 '16 at 19:45
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Its going to be hard to find a kit for $50 or less, but these are some kits for an affordable price which can be programmed to do what I think you might be looking for.

The first one here includes everything to build the bot: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Arduino-Starter-Kit-eBOT-Z-Smart-Car-Robot-Chassis-Bundle-DIY-New-from-USA-/252089921982?hash=item3ab1baf1be:g:vdEAAOSwrklVWX0K

This one is just the chassis and associated parts, if you already have an arduino and other parts laying around: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ardokit-Smart-Robot-Car-Chassis-Kit-Speed-Encoder-Battery-Box-For-Arduino-/162229636923?hash=item25c5a3cf3b:g:1WwAAOSw-CpX9iWt

This one has tracks but costs a bit more and I'm not too familiar with its capabilities but since its arduino based it can be programmed to do whatever: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Makeblock-Creative-DIY-Bluetooth-Tank-Car-Robot-Starter-Kit-for-Arduino-Blue-USA-/262657815040?hash=item3d27a03200:g:5kcAAOSwFdtX0ogB

I know these links are frowned upon and this probably isn't an acceptable answer, but its going to be hard to answer without a link to a product that fits the question.

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  • I will go wiht one of these. Not sure which yet, nut probably teh first. Confuse-a-cat, here we come – Mawg says reinstate Monica Oct 6 '16 at 17:00
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This looks very promising.

It's a crab/spider like device, using cardbaord for legs, and an Arduino to control it.

From the comments on the linked page:

the servos cost $24 for set of 10 (bought 2 set) & the shield was $7 on Amazon, joystick was $7+shipping on digi-key and the transceivers were 4/$6.50 on ebay. The Arduino nano and UNO I have along with the LED, wires, etc.

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