How to build a robot out of recycled material

Written by nicole campbell
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How to build a robot out of recycled material
(Arts and Crafts image by ne_fall_photos from

In this day and age, recycling is more important than it has ever been before. It is your responsibility to teach your kids the importance of reusing old items instead of throwing them in the trash. They will love learning about taking care of the environment while learning how to build a robot out of recycled material. Just use a few things around the house and a lot of imagination to get started.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • You will need random odds and ends, including but not limited to:
  • Old coffee cans
  • Nuts and bolts
  • Old soup cans, vegetable cans, etc.
  • A larger can (bigger than a soup can, smaller than a coffee can)
  • Cardboard or construction paper
  • A hammer and nails
  • String or yarn

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  1. 1

    Sketch it out. If you are going to build a robot out of recycled junk or high tech materials, both will require a sketch beforehand. If you don't know what you want take a few minutes to create a drawing of the type of robot you want to create.

  2. 2

    Organise your materials. Figure out what of your materials you will use for each robot body part. Consider the fact that you will need a torso, a head, arms, legs, and accessories. It is recommended that you use a coffee can for the torso, a larger vegetable or soup can for the head, four small soup cans for the arms and legs, and various odds and ends around the home to add personality.

  3. 3

    Drill holes to string everything together. Glue the plastic top to the coffee can so that it won't come loose. Drill one hole through the top and bottom of the coffee can. The same goes with the bottoms of the other cans. This is what you will use to simulate joints in the robot.

  4. 4

    String it all together. Tie a large bead onto the end of a piece of string to hold it on; an extra large knot will also do fine. String two soup cans onto each side of the large coffee can to simulate arms. Do the same with the remaining two soup cans to simulate legs on the bottom of the coffee can. If you string them tightly, it won't allow for much movement. If you string

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