Wireless Animatronic Hand Control


[Easton] was looking to enter his local science fair and needed a project that would wow the judges. After considering it for a bit, he decided that an animatronic hand would be a sure winner. Many animatronic projects we have seen are connected to a computer for control purposes, but his is a bit different.

[Easton] wanted to be able to control the hand in real time with his own movements, so he sewed some flex sensors onto a glove and wired them up to a custom Arduino shield he built. The Arduino is also connected to an XBee radio, allowing it to interface with his animatronic hand wirelessly.

He built the hand after studying anatomical drawings to better understand where finger joints were located and how they moved. He cut up pieces of flexible wire tubing to build the fingers, reinforcing them with Lego bricks. He ran fishing wire from the finger tips to five independent servos to provide the hand’s motion. Another Arduino with an XBee shield was used to control the hand and receive wireless signals from the glove.

Check out the video below to see why this project won [Easton] first place in the science fair.


9 thoughts on “Wireless Animatronic Hand Control

  1. I’m not trying to troll, but I have what I to be a legitimate question. Where is the line between engineering and science? Or, is there no line?

    I’ve had many arguments with people over the years on this topic and I wonder what HaD has to say. Thx

  2. Hmm… imagine this in a compact form controlling an animatronic prosthetic hand. For someone who still has one hand it could mirror image what the human hand is doing.

    This would essentially allow the amputee to have control over both hands and would allow them to do many things!

  3. I am the maker of this and actually the main point of this project was to control an animatronic hand without the use of a computer. Also the wireless was a big part also. You could adapt another was to control the hand other than hand control.

    Thank You, Easton

  4. How hard would it be to adapt a feedback system so you know when the remote has touched something?

    From a professional level, there is no live between science and engineering. Engineering is applied science. They are different aspects of the same thing.

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