Design Preview Report: Sci Fi Robot


I am fond of Sci-Fi literature as I believe this is most important form of literature which impact and guides the future of our world. It talks about how the world intend to be, how computers may forge the world of tomorrow among many other prescient events.

My main inspiration for trying to build a sci fi robot aesthetic stems from –

  • Simon Stålenhag’s Tales from the Loop, which is a wildly successful crowd-funded project that takes viewers on a surprising sci-fi journey through various country and city landscapes―from small towns in Sweden and the deserts of Nevada to the bitter chill of Siberia―where children explore and engage with abandoned robots, vehicles, and machinery large and small, while dinosaurs and other creatures wander our roads and fields.
  • Followed by the hard Sci Fi book by Andy Weir named as “Project Hail Mary”


My Vision: 

What I intend to do is very simple here, I want to build an artifact whose aesthetics is rooted from SciFi stories I have read in past, also it must look like a robot. For Functionality, I do ask myself for a lot though to start with for version 1 build I am trying to achieve whatever is possible given component lead time constraints.

At bare minimum, I’ll keep at least one dynamic part in functionality with major focus on aesthetics of the robot.

Design Sketches for Possible Shape form: 

Fabrication Process: 

There are many ways which I explored to fabricate the robot parts with varied materials. Difficult contours parts has to be 3D printed and sanded thereafter. Rest of body of robot will be made out of sheet metal which will be riveted together to keep the smoothness consistent and structure rigid enough. For eyes and back section, I am planning to use a transparent sheet which enhance the see-through look which is intended to see complex parts inside robot as the version keeps getting updated and internal architecture of the robot keeps updating. This first version will moist likely end up as the mockup of outer body of the robot.

Intended BOM V1.0- (final build components will differ)

  • Raspberry Pi 4 (8 GB)
  • Stepper motors 
  • Linear actuators
  • Lights for aesthetics
  • Sheet metal 
  • Retro inspired color paint 
  • Rivet gun 



April 1 – April 10: Sourcing of Components and order placement.

April 10 – April 20: Design Concept final and fabrication material and plan readiness

April 20 – April 27: Hardware mode for Robot body build.

April 27-May 3: Iterate on aesthetic on need basis to keep artifact ready for presentation.


Design Preview Presentation Video Link


References for Images: 

  • Tales from the Loop Book by Simon Stalenhag published in 2015. (Featured Image)
  • Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir: Book Cover published in 2021.
  • Tales from the Loop TV series snip by Amazon Prime.


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2 Comments. Leave new

  • How did you manage to get your hands on a Raspberry Pi 4? I have been looking for one for ages! I love the references you’ve included for your project inspiration, and I am quite invested in seeing the final design you come up with. Creating a sci-fi robot is a difficult task, but you seem up to the challenge!

  • Ankit Karkhanis
    April 28, 2023 5:18 pm

    Hey Rishabh,
    I’m really excited with your project idea and you seem to have planned it out quite well. I really liked your decision to stick to a Sci-fi aesthetic and look forward to your progress and eventually the final product!


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