This 6-axis robot arm is like the industrial arms pros use at a fraction of the cost

When you think robots, your mind likely jumps to R2-D2 or Wall-E. But the reality is that robots are everywhere already, with the trusty functional robotic arm serving as a backbone of industrial manufacturing for decades. And they're that popular because they're ultra adaptable. You can teach a robot arm to do everything from popping open a can of soda to untangling hair to whipping up a mighty mean paella

For those interested in the world of robotics, manufacturing, engineering, and more, there are few learning tools as vital to teaching those principles as a quality robotic arm. Unfortunately, they are also usually prohibitively expensive, with industrial arms ranging anywhere from $25,000 up to $400,000. With the WLKATA Mirobot 6-Axis Mini Robot Arm, learners can try out all their construction and programming ideas on a professional-grade arm…but at a significantly lower price.

Unlike most of the behemoths that sit on a factory floor, this arm only stands less than 9 inches high, but mechanically, it's machined to perform to the same standards as arms several times its size. Just like those larger arms, this unit has a full 6-axis motion range, allowing users to program and automate processes the same as bigger models. 

Especially at a smaller size, precision counts for even greater importance, with just a razor-thin 0.2mm repeated positioning accuracy. That means this piece can handle the ultra-fine operations you want to perform, all with the smooth actions and stable motions that stand apart from the often shaky trembling seen in lesser servo-driven arms. 

This arm also includes several attachments to better customize your actions, featuring effectors to handle micro-servo gripping, holding a pen, applying a suction cup, pneumatic two-finger gripping, or ball gripping.

Right now, you can get a WLKATA Mirobot 6-Axis Mini Robot Arm in one of two different packages: in the educational kit including the arm ($1,399; originally $1,540); or in the professional kit ($1,539; originally $1,690), which also includes a Bluetooth remote controller as well as an accompanying act, so you can run the arm right through your smartphone.

Prices subject to change.