BristleBot Model 1

Target Audience

  • Children (age 8-14)
    BristleBot Model 1
  • Adults (parents/guardians)
    • Who would accompany the children to replicate this model

Starting Point

  • Get a feel for visual conception through this Youtube Tutorial Video
    • This helps to capture an image of a generic BristleBot Model
  • Derive the features for the BristleBot from |Hexbugs

Replication Goal

  • Instead of copying the Youtube Bristlebot, remodel its structure and design based upon the listed materials
    • Be creative to gain children's attention and their interests in making this bristlebot
  • Like nano hexbugs, the replicated model must move as well
    • The vibration caused by the model allows the Bristlebot to move in a direction
    • Angle the brush/base so that the model moves forward; not in a loop of random directions


  • Three 2.5-3 in. nails
  • $1 material's motor
  • $1 material's brush
  • Double-sided foam tapes
  • Wires (from the carjack)
  • Battery Cell 2072 (Originally used before it died and replaced with AA)

Procedure: BristleBot Model 1


BristleBot 1 Testing

  • The demonstration of the BristleBot 1
    • Due to short-lived battery-cell life, it had been replaced with bigger, much heavier AA battery


  • Assembly style to create this model
    • Each compartment could be replicated by young children by simply stacking each layer on top of each other
      • Bottom = Toothbrush
      • Middle = Motor
      • Top = Counterbalance weight (The nails)
  • Resembles the image of a helicopter
    • Kids tend to like real-life object that can only be seen in TV or virtual world (like video gaming)


  • Exposure of vibrator
    • As the vibrator spins to cause movement, children's hair (especially girls') could be rolled up
    • Such example can be found here:
  • Sharp nails are required for this model
    • It's still dangerous for young kids to build with, even with adults' assistance
  • Battery life is incredibly short when 'properly-sized' battery cell is used
    • This could be countered with AA battery but, as shown in the Testing video, the model had a balance/stability issue
    • Doesn't go 'forward' but rather falls immediately after the motor activation
  • There is no 'real switch'
    • Tape that is attached onto the free-floating wire doesn't stay attached to the battery to cause movment
    • The 'attached' tape immediately falls off or inadequately stays attached as seen in the Testing video