Little Dipper

Created on 07 Nov 2017

Personalized colored candles!

Remember that ombre candle you saw through the window of Yankee candles? Perhaps you didn’t like the color scheme, or wanted something more than a generic, store bought candle. Well, look no further! The Little Dipper brings to Build18 2018 our very own, customizable candle designer! You pick and choose the colors you want your candle to be, and watch as the Little Dipper creates a custom candle right before you. The Little Dipper consists of a rotating disk containing heated plates. Each plate contains molten wax of different colors. Alongside these hot plates is a tub of water. In the center of the rotating disk contains a robotic arm mechanism. The setup also contains a graphical interface on a laptop. The user can select their preference of colors and the order they want these colors to appear in, and then press a “Send to Dipper” button. When this button is pressed, the Little Dipper picks up a candle (provided!) and alternates between dipping it into the molten colored wax and the water. Once the coloring is done, the Little Dipper places the candle into a separate area from which the user can pick it up. Enjoy your personalized ombre candle!


Vaidehi Srinivas


Aarohi Palkar


Erica Tsai

Part Cost Quantity Total
Candles $17.46 2 $34.92
Will dip in colored wax
Arm Motor $13.99 2 $27.98
To drive the lead screws for the dipping arm
Mounting Brackets $7.79 1 $7.79
Mounting the lead screw in the dipping arm
Clips $6.99 1 $6.99
Clip to hold candle
Warming Plate $63.99 1 $63.99
To keep wax warm for dipping
Lead Screw (arm lateral) $17.99 1 $17.99
To move dipping arm laterally
Transistor $9.69 2 $19.38
To control stepper motor through arduino
Breadboard $7.99 1 $7.99
For breadboarding
Colored Wax $16.50 1 $16.50
We will melt this wax and dip the candles in it
Lead Screw $12.98 1 $12.98
For the dipping, and the track for the dipping arm
Acrylic $18.80 2 $37.60
For building the arm
Beakers $6.28 7 $43.96
To hold the melted wax
Project Totals: 22 $298.07
Track 1 Base Budget: $300.00
Preferred Vendor Budget Bonus: $0.00
Remaining Budget: $1.93
Vaidehi Srinivas 16 Jan 2018, 10:32 p.m. EST
We laser cut our first set of pieces. We are on track to have all of our pieces cut tonight, and ready for assembly tomorrow.
Vaidehi Srinivas 16 Jan 2018, 8:50 p.m. EST
We are CAD-ing up our frame so that we can laser cut our pieces tonight. We are going to laser cut the pieces out of acrylic, and put them together with glue. Our pieces have to be able to slide against each other and attach to the lead screws for movement, so we have to be careful how we design them.
Vaidehi Srinivas 16 Jan 2018, 5:50 p.m. EST
We are hard at work putting together schematics for our dipping arm. We plan to build the frame using acrylic, and use lead screws to move the arm laterally, and to move the dipper up and down. We have a rough sketch, and are working to solidify our measurements, so that we can laser cut our parts.