Makeblock Music Robot

This kit is from the Chinese company Makeblock. There are many different robot kits available but this one is based around an arduino compatible controller board. A stepper motor and solenoid is used to move and then drop a a hammer onto a xylophone to play a tune.

The kit comes with some software that is not the most user friendly, but allows you to play tunes in one of three different ways:

  • It can play the Xylophone by an application via USB cable installed on your computer. Using this application, the keyboard or number keys from 1 to 7 can be used to play music.
  • You can also type a music score in the application and then send it to the robot, the robot will play the music you have sent automatically.
  • The music robot kit uses an ultrasonic module to detect the position of gestures, which are then translated into music played on the xylophone.

When we opened our kit from an Ebay supplier, it was unfortunately missing some parts and some of the parts were clearly not what was expected. As the parts bags were still sealed, I would suggest this is a problem with the manufacturers rather than the Ebay seller. However we quickly ordered some replacements and all was well again.

I managed to get the kit for under £100 including delivery and it took a couple of hours to build. The kit came with two hammers for the xylophone which is useful as our dog chewed one of them!

The build instructions can be downloaded here:

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More pictures, instructions and video of the Makeblock in action will be posted soon…

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