Kickstarter is certainly no stranger to robots, and we’ve covered quite a few robot campaigns over the years. Some, like Haddington Dynamics’ Dexter robot arm, have proved to be much more than crowdfunding vaporware and have gone on to secure respected positions within the industry. But most of those — Dexter included — are real robots that are designed to do real work, and have been priced accordingly. They aren’t exactly something you can back on a whim, which is what most of us are comfortable with when it comes to crowdfunding. Fortunately for our frugal readers, the Geeek Club DIY Robotics Kit can be had for a mere $50.
The Geeek Club DIY Robotics Kit will be running for another month and half, but it has already reached more than five times its original $7,000 funding goal. That’s because you don’t just get one measly robot for your $50, you get a whopping seven robots — and can even choose between two different sets. Of course, these aren’t real robots. They’re really just novelty toys. But they are still functional; all fourteen of the available robots have just one function, which is to follow a light source.
All of the robot designs, in both the Nano-Bots and Voodoo sets, ship in the form of a small PCB. The two-dimensional PCBs snap apart, and then can be assembled into three-dimensional works of PCB art. A pair of photoresistor sensors are used to detect a light source, and two tiny vibration motors cause the robots to shimmy towards it. All of the robot designs are fun to look at, but the two available sets have distinct styles. The Nano-Bots collection has a traditional science fiction aesthetic, while the Voodoo collection is inspired by tribal culture around the world. None of these robots will help improve the efficiency of your factory’s assembly line, but they are fun little projects that can help you improve your skills at a nearly trivial cost.
If you want a Geeek Club DIY Robotics Kit, the Kickstarter campaign will be running until January 19th. Super early birds can get a set of seven robots for $49, but that will jump up to $69 once those are gone. Rewards are expected to be delivered in April of 2020.