Make: 70 — We Can’t Quit You!

Make: magazine is back in action and back to our original size! This issue’s cover project is a maker’s take on a Boston Dynamics-style quadrupedal walking robot that you can build yourself. Then, build an adorable unicorn shaped dispenser that spits soap on command. And to celebrate Make:’s return, why not build a custom dancing version of our Makey mascot.

Plus, 28 projects including:

  • Teeny-tiny personal motorboat
  • Standup paddle board
  • Bird-identifying computer-vision birdhouse
  • Backyard bicycle pump track
  • and more!

On the Cover: Developed by maker Rongzhong Li, NybbleCat is and open source quadruped robot kit that walks, waves, reacts to commands, and looks super cute doing it.

Table of Contents


Reader Input

Notes from readers like you. Page 04

Welcome: Shape Our Future Together

It’s good fortune to have others pick you up when you’re down.Page 07

Made on Earth

Backyard builds from around the globe.Page 08


DIY Science

Public Lab is working to build a healthier and more equitable world through community science, open technology, and environmental justice. Page 16

Economia Circolare

Italians designs for a carbon-free future at Maker Faire Rome. Page 28

Special Section: The Outsiders

The Outsiders

Why lock yourself indoors when there’s so much building to be done outside? Page 32

Mock Yacht

Explore the seven seas in this just-barely-one-person motorboat. Page 34

Smart Bird Feeder

Use machine learning to identify different bird species and deter squirrels with the Coral Dev Board. Page 46

Longboard CNC SUP

Use a CNC router to build a beautiful, hollow wooden stand-up paddleboard. Page 52

Surf Stand

Assemble this surfboard rack to keep your quiver clean and clear.Page 62

Pedal to the Medal

Traversing sand dunes and bay waters, the 3-day, human-powered Kinetic Race celebrates 50 years with 50 miles of grueling and hilarious ingenuity.Page 63


Why be constrained to just one campsite? Convert a van, pack up your gear, and the whole world becomes yours to explore.Page 64

Backyard Pump Track

Design and build your own mountain bike track for riders of all skill levels. Page 66

Aluminum Whistle

Impressive and easier than it looks, it’s perfect for outdoor adventures or gift giving. Page 70

Be Prepared

Get the most out of your camping trip with these clever projects. Page 74


Get Nybbled!

Build a true quadruped, walking robot kitten with the free OpenCat framework running on an inexpensive Arduino.Page 76

Makey Is Real!

Build our biped mascot with all-new articulated arms and head, plus all the dance moves of the popular Otto platform. Page 84

DIY Robocars: So Ready to Rumble

Build an affordable, autonomous racer that can (finally?) beat human drivers. Page 90

Soap Vomiting Unicorn!

Hack a cheap automatic soap dispenser to build your own wash-time buddy.Page 94

DIY Inflatable Car

How one maker built an amphibious vehicle from hacked power tools. Page 100

Amateur Scientist: In Your Face

Measure your face’s exposure to UV rays with a “Sunny Sam” dummy. Page 106

Play That Funky Music

Turn a vintage radio into a lo-fi guitar amp.Page 112

Skill Builder

BIG Printin’

Chop up your designs when you need something bigger than your bed. Page 118

Cut and Paste

Make a cardboard attachment guide for your classroom to help inspire great builds. Page 122



Gear up with reviews of the latest tools and kits for makers.Page 124

Show & Tell

Show & Tell

Dazzling projects from our inventive readers.Page 128