3D Print Your Own Paperbot

Paperbots traversing a paper maze

3D Printing










The 3DoT PaperBot Kit is a great packet to get started with robotics, Arduino and programming. If you prefer to build things from scratch, though, you can download the PaperBot 3D models here and 3D print everything yourself! This is also a great way to get started with 3D printing your own robots.

A two wheel + caster ball robot is a staple in robotics, as it is the easiest platform for programming a PID Control System to make the robot drive straight and follow lines. Being able to spin on the spot also simplifies control using gyroscopes and encoders.

Parts Required

DescriptionUsage LocationExample Source
Filament to print parts (Any type will do)Amazon
Flat Head Machine Screw, #2-56 x 1/4″Attach ball caster to shelfAmazon/Micro Fasteners
Flat Head Machine Screw, #2-56 x 3/8″Connect front and back panels to side panelsMicro Fasteners
Flat Head Thread Rolling Screw for Plastic, #3-24 x 3/4″Attach motors to side panelsSmall Parts via Amazon
Square Nut, #2-56Connect front and back panels to side panelsMicro Fasteners
Flat Head Thread Rolling Screw for Plastic, #2-28 x 3/8″Attach motors to side panelsSmall Parts via Amazon
Hex Socket Flat Head Machine Screw, M3 x 18mmWheelsUxcell via Amazon
Hex Nylon Insert Lock Nut, M3WheelsDCS via Amazon
Nylon Flanged Bushing, 0.199″ barrel OD, 0.123″ ID
0.250″ barrel length, 0.283″ flange OD
WheelsThe Hillman Group via Amazon
Heat-Set Insert for Plastics, #2-56 x 0.115″Ball casterMcMaster-Carr
Chrome Steel Bearing Balls, 3/8″Ball casterVXB
Mini Plastic GearmotorHumansforrobots.com
Wood dowel, fluted, 1/4″ OD x 1″Straw holder


Wood dowel, fluted, 1/4″ OD x 1″ Paper Skin Straw holderAmazon
Flexible PaperBot TiresIn case you are not able to 3D print flexible materialsHumansforrobots.com



The folder downloadable above contains a whole lot of files to let you experiment with, as well as 3D models of the 3DoT and various peripherals to use for reference in your modeling.

To get started with printing the paperbot, navigate to the “panels” folder and try printing the back, front, right (going to need two of these for the sides), straw hold and shelf spring lock files (Most CAD software e.g. Fusion 360 should be able to import SLDPRT files).

If those came out good, move on to the “drive train” folder and print the bushing standoff x2, gear-14-drive x2, gear-43-ring x2, and if you have the ability to print using flexible filament, also print two of the tires.

After that, all that is left is to print a ball caster. The one you print will depend on the size of the ball purchased. See the filenames in the “ball casters” folder for info.

Refer back to the PaperBot Kit product page for instructions on assembling everything.

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