You probably do not recognize me because of the red arm...
While Christmas shopping on Dec 24th (of course!) I came across this nifty toy. It was a Sharper Image Robot Arm. I found it at Belk for $35! The original price seems to have been $99, which is a little high but not terribly so. But if you have looked around and motorized tracked vehicles, or the parts to build them, you know that $35 for a set of motorized, independent tracks is pretty doggone good. And these are large: the tracks are about 1 1/4 inch wide on 3 inch diameter wheels with a wheelbase of about 6 1/2 inches. The tracks appear to be fairly heavy-duty. We will get to the innards shortly. So, $35 is a pretty good price just for the motorized platform. Now throw in a motorized arm with 4 degrees of freedom including a rotating gripper, and that's one heck of a deal.
I liked the deal so much after opening the box and playing a bit that I went online looking for more. There are decent prices on them all over the place, but I found more at Belk for $29.95! I signed up for their email and got a $10 off coupon, which was about the same as shipping. Anyway, I ended up buying two more so I have three with a total investment around $100!