They immediately jump out at you
from the moment you see the box
because of their bright
colors and charming cartoonish
appearance. Opening the box reveals
that the parts are divided into plastic
bags for sorting. The kit also
contains an instruction manual and
a mix and match line-following track.
A fold-out pamphlet shows how to
get started with the bugs right away,
and it details some of the exciting
add-ons not present in the original kit.
Our first order of business was to
pop open the parts bags to see what
we were dealing with. The target
audience of the Ollo Bugs invites a
comparison to the LEGO Mindstorms
kits, and as we sifted through the
parts we remembered the anticipation
and excitement of our initial
introduction to the world of kid
The kit itself is comprised of two
classes of parts. One contains the
main structural pieces, which are
plastic plates choc full of holes that
come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
The other type is the unique kind
of fastener, referred to in the kit
literature as a sleeve and rivet system.
LEGOs have become famous for
their ingeniously simple mechanism
that is literally the building block of
the brand – the classic dimples. Would
the Ollo kit have a similarly innovative
mechanism to make kit building easy
and fun? The folks at Robotis have
4. THE OLLOW BUG MOTOR.
certainly made an admirable effort
with the unusual rivet and sleeve
system. The color coding on the rivets
refer to different lengths and sizes of
rivets, and the bright colors make the
right parts easy to find quickly.
The Ollo kit comes with a special
tool for the removal of the rivets. The
rivets can usually be inserted by hand
easily, but removal is a bit more
difficult. The removal tool —
reminiscent of the sharp end of a
claw hammer, does actually make the
process relatively painless.
The instruction manual for the
bugs is mercifully devoid of written
instructions, and instead relies on
detailed three dimensional models
to communicate the process of
constructing the robot. The
instructions alert the builder to the
type and number of each part
required for each step beforehand,
and the colorful models are fairly easy
to read. There can be some difficulty
when dealing with parts that demand
5. THE OLLO BUG INSTRUCTION
a large number of rivets because it
can be confusing to keep track of
where they are supposed to go, but
a careful accounting of the holes is a
surefire strategy for success.
The instruction manual gives
directions on how to build four
different creepy crawlies: a ladybug, a
grasshopper, an Atlas beetle, and a
mysterious weevil looking creature.
All of the bugs except for the
grasshopper start from a common
base, so we decided to build that first.
We soon discovered that reaching into
the parts bags for a specific piece was
a tedious test of dexterity, so we
emptied out the bags into the open
Ollo Bug box for easy retrieval.
The Ollo Bugs’ box declares that
the kits are suitable for ages 10 and
6. THE OLLO BUG BRAIN.
7. THE OLLO BUG BASE.