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As soon as i grabbed the Spider Control Rod a Robot Spider appeared from the right of the bench the Rod was displayed on. 2 Laboratory guards also came into the room to which the Spider started attacking the guards with its sparks weapon/magic.
It is possible to control the Spider's movements by pointing the rod & 'firing' at a location. The Spider will move to that spot.
I was unable to get it out of the ruins though as the Museum guards killed it. If i was not on a Thieves Guild quest at the time i would of killed guards left & right just to see how far i could take it. As per the journal of Calcelmo's nephew though, it does attack anyone that intends/attempts to harm you so i believe it will attack anyone even slightly hostile toward your character.Ja50nX (talk) 03:20, November 29, 2011 (UTC)
After leaving the museum, the spider control rod is no longer showing up as stolen for me, can anyone else confirm? The spider can't be healed using the healing hands spell, so once he loses health, it looks like it won't recover. I have a save after completing the quest in the museum with the control rod and the spider, but after a bit of playing around, it doesn't seem like he can get through any doors which need to be activated (level transitions) so seems like he is stuck in the one room.
If anyone can think of a way to get him through doors (console commands perhaps?), I'd love to hear it - he's awesome fun and it's such a waste for him to be locked away in a single room in the laboratory.
Based on the last entry of the Calcelmo's lab journal, I'm pretty confident that he only works when inside the laboratory:
"I wanted to show the Jarl, but I can't seem to get the spider to leave the lab - it looks like its control crystal only works up here. Maybe if I can reattune the enchantment...?" Skitzac0rpse (talk) 08:18, December 3, 2011 (UTC)