Let's Make Robots!

ezekiel181's blog

Swarm AI beginnings (XMOS Competition)

Last Update: 13/10/09 XK1 first look pictures.

My XK1 arrived this morning via Japan post. Being so close to Hong Kong I might be the first :P But they were sent out on the 9th so those people waiting on one should go check your post box!

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Vacuum forming plastic parts.

Heres a few photos of my home made plastic vacuum former and its maiden test. If you don`t know what vacuum forming is check here, and youtube.

Essentially a sheet of heated plastic is placed over some kind of mould which then has the air sucked out from underneath it. The soft plastic schloops to the shape of the mould and when it cools you have yourself a robot part. It really does sound like schloop if you`re wondering.

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Hand held battery vacuum cleaner

I bought a cheap battery powered vacuum cleaner from dealextreme to build into Ozzy. The idea was to build a front mounted vacuuming attachment as inspired by emullers vacuum bug. I was pretty skeptical of its sucking power and for about $6 with free shipping worldwide I wasn`t expecting it to be very useful. Now that it has arrived I can say yes indeed it does suck! In a good way!

Heres a small pre-hacking photo review.

Max713 NiCad/NiMH smart charger.

I made a battery charger with some free samples of the maxim max713 chip.

Maxim home page.

Chip details.

Datasheet.

Search for samples.

Zodiac display done.

Edit: Added some more photos to the bottom. Those were taken with the curtains shut. Also took a short video.

Finally completed the zodiac display. Aside from the sickly colour of the top and 1 of the red LEDs stopped working after I glued it all together, I`m pretty happy with the way it turned out.

Edge lit zodiac display.

The school I work for runs extra Summer School classes over the summer break here in Japan and all the teachers are given some certain amount of freedom in how they teach the curriculum. Everyone is encouraged to make displays, signs, games etc. Basically let your inner child out and make some cool stuff :)

Part of what I have to teach is the western zodiac. The section in the kids textbook was really lame and everyone knows LEDs make things 100x better so this is what I have come up with... the LED-edge-lit-zodiac-star-sign-display!!

Heres the basic plan:

DIY CNC Part II

26/05/09

2 more draw slides to use for the Y axis purchased from here. High quality slides with ball bearing inserts. Still have to work out how I want to mount them. They were only $15 each.. money well spent now that I can see them close up.

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DIY CNC router project

04/06 Update

Motors and driver chips arrived in a package with some stuff for other projects today. Can`t find much information about the motors online and they have some marks on the body but they should work great. I`ll breadboard a circuit up to test the motors later.

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$10 logic analyzer

After a lot of umming and ahhing and general procrastination I decided to dig this out of the cupboard to give it a whirl again.