Let's Make Robots!

deereaya's blog

Back after a long time, motor moving

Well, I disappared for a long time there.  I moved to Austin and started a new job :)  Oh, and I had to learn to solder to get the motor drive set up with the breadboard pins.  My girl got me a gret Edsyn soldering setup and a solarbot light following mouse to practice on and now I'm all solderiffic :)

Steppers found :) Trying to decide driver

I wandered past an old Brother MFC 9700 in the corridor and grabbed it.  Found two stepper motors, one from the Auto-document feeder and one that was moving the optical scanner. 

ADF motor: Mitsumi M42SP-6NPK.  I figure this little guy at 41.4 mN/m

Scanner motor: Shinano Kenshi STP-42D009. Wrote what I figured out about this in this older thread. Not totally sure but something like 200 mN/m or 30 ish oz-in.  makes sense as it is larger/heavier.

Normally locked rotation? Power-off brake?

Thinking about the mechanicals of this a little more, I've been considering servos and steppers.  I don't need speed or precision, really.  But I do need to be able to move in either direction, which I now understand to be complicated with servos.  So I considered steppers, which at least can move in either direction. 

Driving servos from GPIO

The next challenge is to drive a servo from the RouterStation board.  This servo will eventually turn the box around a pole.

I understand that there are lots of serial and usb servo control options for servos. But I also understand that one can use a GPIO pin to directly signal a single servo, which is all I need.  Save some dollars :)

Wireless repeater part working

Got the wireless repeater parts up and running.  The default firmware on the routerstation doesn't have the ath9k driver that the R52nm cards need.  That's ok, I was able to flash in the updated OpenWRT 'backfire' using the 10.03 candidate from the openwrt site (using the 'factory.bin image which I understand you have to use the first time). 

Routerstation in a Stationbox

Initial components arrived :)  This phase is really just getting the WiFI repeater working, before moving on to the servo control and aiming mechanism.

Received everything from Baltic Wireless on Friday, all very nicely packaged and shipped.  Everything is smaller than I expected, which is good, for some reason I was seeing the StationBox as about the size of an A4/Letter paper sheet, but really it's much smaller than that.  I'm surprised that the panel antenna is 14dbi at its size, but that's all to the good.

Components ordered

Finally ordered the basic components for the auto-aiming wireless repeater bot, everything other than the servos and wheels basically :) Bought from Baltic Networks who had great prices and pre-sales support.

Basic platform is the Ubuiquiti RouterStation @ $63 (going to be running OpenWRT).  Much more powerful than a usual robotics board (and much larger) but I'm definitely hoping that the GPIO pins are enough for the servo control.

Towards a auto-aiming servo controled directional wifi antenna

I'm planning a project to get an auto-aiming directional wifi antenna working to provide a long-distance repeater for a boat at anchor connecting to access points we don't control.I think this is a robot, but a simple one.  I think it's a robot because it senses its environment and responds to it.  Sadly it won't be very pretty but it might be useful.  It will definitely be fun ;)