As you can see on our Bill of Materials, we’ve calculated a price of close to $25 to build one robot. However, this price is a little optimistic for two reasons. First, this price assumes you already own the needed equipment to build the robot itself. Second, it calculates price based on the quantity of material needed for one robot, not the actual amount of material you have to buy to build one robot. For example, you only use 1/10 of one piece of foam board to build one robot. The link provided gives a price of $9.20 for 5 boards. Assuming you could get 50 robots in total from 5 boards, the price calculated is 1/50 of the sale price, i.e. 18 cents. However, realistically you could not buy 1/10 of a piece of foam board.

For these reasons, we have decided to provide a few different price analyses. If you would like to see this analysis in-depth, you can download the Pricing Analysis Spreadsheet, located in the References section. We have also provided a simplified analysis, which begins below.

For one robot, we have calculated a total set-up price of close to $115. This price includes the optional parts and equipment listed in each respective section. This also recognizes the fact that you cannot always purchase exactly the amount of material needed. Therefore, the price for foam board is shown at the full price of $9.20, as opposed to 18 cents.

Additionally, we assumed if you are only making one robot, you would buy an ATmega328 from Sparkfun that already has a bootloader on it, which would save you from purchasing the Arduino Uno R3 and the microcontroller. If you do this, you would also need to buy a ceramic resonator. See Electrical Instructions for more information.

The cost per robot decreases considerably with scale. For a classroom of 10 students, assuming only one of each piece of equipment is needed, the cost per robot is around $37.