The first British home construction robot arm; with continuous path movement, made from a kit of parts supplied by Colne Robotics for use by light industry, educational establishments and the hobbyist, c. 1981.
This was designed to fulfill the needs of the small industrial user who was searching for a small programmable manipulative machine with a capacity of 7 K ; the educational and research establishment and finally the hobbyist. Colne products sold this in kit form for £199 or £270 assembled. It could have a manual control box for £25 or a interface unit and tape cassettes of software for £55 so that it could be operated by a home computer based on the Z 80 microprocessor. This one was introduced at the height of the interest in home computers of that type and could be programmed by the home enthusiast prepared to programme up 700 lines of machine code. The continuous path characteristic enabled any or all of the stepped motors to operate at the same time, making possible very complex movements. The claw or grabber was a patented design. The machine was publicised and promoted by 'Electronics Today' International magazine of september 1981 who state that 'the kit of parts is like a meccano set with all the drilling and cutting done; just slot it together with instructions from the manual'.