Monday, July 18, 2011

Strange and Beautiful Hexapods (Spider Robots), A Gallery

Hexahelicopter: ridiculousness.

Q: How many species of hexapods (six-legged robots) are there in the world? Oh, oh dear.
A: A mind-boggling awesomespectacular amount.

Here's a compilation of some of the hexapod craziness out there. The sheer number of different hexapod designs out there is mind-blowing.

(p.s. for ideas of simple ways to build one, see my build post:

Infinity Degrees-of-Freedom Style

To start off with, you guys have all watched the dancing hexapods, right?

Chopsticks (yes, the robot frame was made of snapped-in-half bamboo chopsticks o.o)

[update 8 dec 2011] Cheaply, out of wood:

Ant-like A-Pod

Hexapod that learns to walk using machine-learning algorithms! shiny shiny, and good music too:


Sheer Giant Awesomeness Style

Spider Tank (An entire series on Youtube!)
The cute prototype:
How it works: (someone attempts to explain it here:
The series:

Walking House-style (by MITERs alum Sam Kronick!) (yes, the scale of this is where humans fit inside easily)

Simple Linkage Style
General idea: Cant one side up and move legs forward.

3D printed


[update 8 dec 2011]
Look it's bicycle powered

Tiny (Pololu)
Simple Hexapod Walker:

Even simpler lego one:

Boebots parallax:

Lego Pneumatics-style
Mondo Spider-- Hydraulic, electric

Jensen / Klann Linkage style "hexapods"

(for a comparison of the linkages:

Uh... more like infinity legs. But same order of magnitude :)

Steam Powered! Wow. The Crabfu site has many other wonders as well.

And semi-relatedly, cute mini-windbeest. D'awww...

Holy cow that's robots on speed. This just has to be watched, no image will do it justice:
Hyper fast robot line following
(more closeups here:

[update 8 dec 2011]
okay, not simple-linkage-style, but rideable! yay

Research Hexapods

(theses are an excellent source of juicy details!)
DASH Resilient High-Speed 16-gram Hexapedal Robot 
By "resilient", they mean "let me drop this robot off a the roof of a ten-story building and have it walk away perfectly fine".... o___O (28 meters, actually)

Origami hexapod?
Climbing robot, DIGbot (awesome site!):
About halfway through this vid, it climbs up a tree trunk!
The thesis:

Another climbing robot, RiSE:

Pneumaticals and FAST and cute -^-^- Stanford Sprawl and iSprawl: (esp. see 0:43 mark)
The website: (click on "Robots":



Random thesis with a lot of theory and less building:

Controls Thesis nom nom:

MIT Leg Lab Controls thesis:
(pdf at

Thesis-y youtube vid, background on hexapods:

Old-school 18 motor hexapod, back in the 1980s: Odex I

NASA GIANT hexapod, wheeled hybrid "ATHLETE"

What the...

Oh, and then you can use your robot as a platform and attach weird things to it. :D
18 servo planter (Farmbot) -- lynxmotion body

18 servo CNC Hexapod Router
Construction details:

ELEKIT MR-9722, aka Avoider III

Hexbugs, which seem like toy rip-offs of research robots / the internet (Jamie, of Spider Tank / Wired fame, was a bit upset about this):

And that's all for today folks. Whew.
Hope that gives some inspiration for building hexapod / spider / legged / AWESOME robots :)


Sellers: (product datasheets are an excellent source of information for advice on how to build your own)
Misc. Documentation:

My main aids in this search: (I mirrored the images, because I hate seeing beautiful image collections destroyed by dead links)
I mirrored the images here:

And, in closing, lego shrimp climbing! An entirely different way of solving "how to climb over obstacles."
Lego Technic SHRIMP

Puaghhhh. Who knew compiling images would eat 6 hours of my life???

edit 10/13/2010: more hexapods, don't think they're mobile but so pretty!

edit 17 dec 2011:
eeeee particle jamming hexapod! hehe. soft hexapod~~