The  BioQueen


 Hi! My name is Nate Eckerson. This webpage details my experiments with the so-called BioBugs made by WowWee/Hasbro.



I first heard about the BioBugs at The prototype renderings of the bugs looked very cool and I looked forward to their demise with much excitement. After they finally came out I was able to acquire two of them, a Red BioBug and a Green BioBug. After my brother and me had played with them for a while Solarbotics announced the BioBug contest. I then resolved to enter in that contest.


At first I was at lost for what to do. My first idea was to take all four motors, extend the legs until they were stilts and add a light seeking head to make a “Strider” style robot. One thing led to another however and I finally decided to make a four motor “Queen Bee” prototyping BioBug. To accomplish this I had to do MAJOR reworking of the interior. Using a high power soldering iron and a file I melted and sawed out many of the pegs and posts in the bug. The plastic proved easy to melt and reform into the shape I wanted.  The next problem was to solve where to put the motors.




The motors are very nice if not a bit on the large and noisy side. The fact that they are square allowed me to epoxy them together in many ways. I positioned them so that the back legs would push and the front legs would lift to clear obstacles using two Master-Slave Bicores.   



The above picture gives a pretty good view of the interior. There are many loose wires that I could intergrade later into the bug, like the reset button, the touch sensors that are already there, and lots of “blinky lights”. The breadboard is where the prototyping feature comes in; it allows me to add extra circuitry, like perhaps a microcore interface or modify the slave bicores (not shown).


The “Queen Bee” is another feature I added fairly late into the project.


The above picture shows the controller circuit board. I took it out of the handheld remote and replaced it inside the bug. I then pulled out the old broadcasting IR LED in the remote and replaced it with the one from the back of the bug




By simply using a bit of tape to fasten down one of the buttons on the circuit board the Queen BioBug can tell other bugs to either follow or attack it.



Future projects are to take advantage of the actual BioBug board and slave the motors off that, which does away with a lot of extra wiring.


Here are some pictures of the BioQueen


 How the front motors are mounted.

 The back motors.




The BioQueen flipped over.




This shows how I sawed off the back end

leaving just the wing cover to get a sort of

“Hatch” effect.






That’s it! This project was very interesting. I think that it warrants getting a few more BioBugs and experimenting with them.