This self-taught young Spaniard has made mechanical arms like Dr. Octopus and a replica of Iron Man’s armor with voice commands.
He is 25 years old, he is self-taught and since the pandemic period he has home-made an Iron Man armor with life-size voice commands and recently some mechanical arms driven by motors, in the purest Dr. Octopus style.
“I finished high school but I have no studies related to programming or robotics,” explains Tomás Castellanos, the young man from Madrid who, inspired by his favorite Marvel characters, shares his different projects on his YouTube channel maker.
With time and dedication, but without robotics studies
His passion for electronics and robotics it comes from home. “When I was little, my father has given me that hobby because he likes it very much. We would disassemble any small device,” recalls Tomás.
With studies related to the world of art, this young man has learned mainly on his own, especially as a result of a period of pandemic where he found more time to carry out this type of work. “Last year I decided to save money and want to build the Iron Man armor”, Tomás reviews. A life-size armor project that was the first of its kind that the young man made.
“I spent two months planning what the electronics were. And since I didn’t have a 3D printer, I ordered the parts from a friend. I had to be sanding by hand to leave them smooth and remove imperfections. It was between 9 and 10 months. I ordered everything from him about May-July and when I finished, counting electronics, it was at the beginning of February of this year “.
Only with the cost of the printed parts to make the armor, the cost amounts to about 1,000 euros. But this was “friendly price”. According to Thomas’ calculations, building an equivalent armor would have a cost of about 2,000 euros approximately. “Electronic components are not very expensive, but you have to add paint, spray, to caulk …”, explains the young man.
At the electronic level, the main addition that he wanted to add to the armor was the voice, with JARVIS sounds.But he finally decided to incorporate speech recognition for the armor to respond. “Play music randomly and if you tell him to introduce himself, he gives you an explanation of what he can do. This is good for me, because when I plug it in, I no longer remember all the voice commands it has, “he points out, while acknowledging that it no longer uses it as much as it used to because” the batteries and the plates are inside.
“Arduino is like Lego, it’s very easy”
One of the allies for doing this type of project is Arduino, which Tomás describes as “very simple”. “I knew absolutely nothing last year. I didn’t even know the name. But I was surprised at how easy it was; four little things and nothing works for you. I compare it a lot to Lego. ”
“I believe that anyone can start using Arduino. In fact I tell my cousin a lot that he would like to do these things. I learned it in a month or two, anyone can“, he concludes.
After the construction of the armor, Thomas decided to buy a 3D printer. At first for keychains and small figures, but after a period of absence at work he began to make replicas of Portal 2, one of Saw’s traps, a ray gun from ‘Rick and Morty’ and finally during these last 4 weeks the elaboration of two mechanical arms, in the purest Dr. Octopus style.
I HAVE ALREADY FINISHED MY MECHANICAL ARMS! ⚙️
After 4 weeks they are finally finished. I would appreciate an RT because it has cost me a sweat to do this. If you want to see the complete video of how I have done them, here you have it: https: //t.co/QPoeDT27IB pic.twitter.com/AsC54di0YZ
– Tomás Castellanos ⎊ (@despacillo) September 20, 2021
“I finished them this weekend and I did them because I saw the trailer for the new Spider-Man movie,” explains Tomás, who raised these arms as a personal challenge. After watching videos of how other people had done it, the young man ruled out a string system to bet on a system of solid parts with motors.
“The most difficult have been the buttons. You have to solder the resistors and also I have opted to use things that I had at home, like parts that had been disassembled from previous projects. “Even so, he acknowledges that the cost of these mechanical arms has been somewhat higher since he ran out of enough materials, he ran out of tin, no heat shrinkable tubes and the soldering iron broke.
In total, the mechanical arms have a total of 8 engines. Three small motors in each clamp and a larger one at the base of each arm.
He explains that the resistance of these arms is quite high and gives us the Iron Man armor as an example, where despite having it without connecting for a while, then everything worked.
“I did not expect at all the reaction that these projects have had,” Tomás acknowledges. “More people have contacted me asking for my code or saying how I did it, than not asking for my help, but I talk for example with a boy who asked me for my help and has already made his own Iron Man helmet “, says the young man, whose designs can be found in Cults3D.
His next project will have to wait, but he has in mind the realization of a yellow container for ‘Monsters SA’, with the capacity to charge the mobile. It would be another example of what can be done with Arduino, patience and passion for robotics.
In Engadget | Getting started with Arduino: which board and starter kits to buy