DIY Robotics kits have been the hot item on everyone’s gift list for the past few years. Building and programming a robot is fun, and it also helps to foster the development of creativity and logical thinking skills. If you are looking for a gift for a beginner or advanced hobbyist, or if you’re buying for a kit for yourself, here are our six favorite DIY robotics kits from 2019.
Best Starter Robot Kits
Raspberry Pis are increasingly popular and becoming more affordable every year. As a result, Raspberry Pi-based DIY kits are ubiquitous at any hobby shop or online robotics retailer; and the Raspberry PiCar by SunFounder is one of the most popular kits available. The kit comes with ultrasonic, light, and line sensors and is easily programmable with the Dragit visual programming interface. The cost of the kit, which includes the Raspberry Pi, is just $ 119.
The Robo Bit Buggy is one of the easiest kits to program and a great introduction to using Python and MicroPython. It has a simple but elegant design and comes fully equipped with line following sensors, ultrasonic distance sensors, and an 8-element LED bar. This kit is a great bargain at only $ 42 + shipping (from the UK).
The LEGO Boost Robot is easily one of the best STEM kits available for younger children. The LEGO robot comes with nearly 850 LEGO bricks, one motor, a light/IR sensor, and the LEGO Move hub, which features two built-in motors. The kit can be made to assemble five unique robot formations and operates with the easy to use Boost app, compatible with your iPad or Android tablet. While this is a perfect gift for younger children, the Boost is not suited for older children. This kit is designed for children aged 7 to 12 and costs $ 159.99.
Best Robotics Kits for Advanced Programmers
Elegoo has created a fun, easy to build, easy to program robotic car powered by their own Arduino UNO clone microcontroller. The kit comes with motors, ultrasonic, and line following sensors. Since it is Arduino compatible it can be programmed through the Arduino IDE or by any C++ based environment. The kit comes with several pre-built applications such as obstacle avoidance and line following, but you can get really creative with everything that’s included. From Elegoo’s website, you can purchase this kit for $ 99.
The Zumo Robot by Pololu comes fully assembled and powered by an Arduino-programmable microcontroller. So what makes it so great? At just 10 cm x 10 cm, it’s tiny enough to qualify for the Mini Sumo competition. With two micro metal gears and a bulldozer style blade, you have a rugged and durable design. Where it really shines, though, is with its six infrared sensors, a three-axis accelerometer, a magnetometer, and a gyroscope. You will have your hands full programming the Zumo, so you’ll be happy they shipped it preassembled. At $ 99.95, it’s one of the best values on this list.
The Ultimate 2.0 is Makeblock’s flagship robot kit. With ten different pre-packaged projects, this kit will keep even the most experienced hobbyist busy for quite a while. You can program in a Scratch-based graphical environment, or with Arduino or Python if you want to take your skills to the next level. Wirelessly control the robot over Bluetooth via the Android and iOS apps. The rugged and durable 6061 aluminum framing will stand up to all of the projects included in the kit and most anything else you can think to design. The Makeblock will set you back $ 350, but that works out to a great value of just $ 35 per project!
If you are an engineer or a programmer who’s passionate about industrial robots and cobots, our DIY projects will stir your curiosity. At DIY-Robotics, we work alongside FANUC to provide you with the resources you need to design and build your own robotic cell. Teaming up with DIY-Robotics provides numerous benefits to your business. For more information, consult our Ultimate Guide to Build Your Own Industrial Robotics Cell.