Let's Make Robots!

Where should I start #2

Oh no, I accidently delete the whole post. I was to delete a reply I just sent by mistake, and apparently it deleted the complete thread :(. Oh dear, and that happens to an IT guy, cheese... :)

But lucky enough, I got a lot of informations before I deleted it. And did save it for offline reading :)
I was to ask only one last thing.

I can't remember who, but someone linked this kit http://www.robotshop.com/eu/dfrobotshop-rover-tracked-robot-basic-kit-2.html
I was to ask if there are any drawbacks in getting this kit instead of the parts that merser listed? Will I be able to improve this kit like adding new parts to it? And will I be able to program, for example, the led's different or will I be restricted somehow by ordering such premade kits compared to ordering parts and not a kit?
What if I break a part of the kit, will I be able to replace it, or is THAT the drawbacks of such kits?
Or is it just a money question? I planned to spend around 100$ (tools excluded) for a kit or parts to do my first steps.



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I have that book. It's nice and well-written, however it doesn't really talk about microcontroller robotics. The book teaches you instead how to build a line follower robot with analog circuitry. From what you've said it seems like you're interested in using a microcontroller, but there's lots of people who make robots from analog components as well.

Hmm, I didn't see that the cable was sold out... Try this one: http://www.robotshop.com/productinfo.aspx?pc=RB-Lyn-164&lang=en-US. Or, if you decide to order a controller from me, I'll throw in a sensor cable for free.

For the motors, I like the GM9 motors because they are faster and these little robots do not need high torque.

As for the book, I would look for a book that talks about building robots with Arduino, like: Arduino Robotics.

Also, from Gordon McComb (author of the Robot Builder's Bonanza) is comming out soon the book Arduino Robotics Bonanza.

If you don't go with Ro-Bot-X's board or Robotshop.com I sell the IR cables at my little shop

Sharp IR sensor cable

I send them through the mail from California. It will cost you $2 total unless you want me to send it express or another method. I'll even throw in some LEDs or something for you to play with too, everyone needs blinky lights. If you use the ALABTU coupon code during checkout it will get you 5% off as well.

I agree with Ro-Bot-X about the GM9s. They're a good all around motor for bots like this.

I have Ro-Bot Xs uBotino arduino board. It's great for wee-sized projects like I'm into but I thought his ardu board that could hook up to shields was nice, I forget the name. It had a lot of nice features IMO. Plus you'd get the IR cable for free! lol


2x GMW combo / GM9:  http://www.solarbotics.com/products/gmpw_deal/  15.96$  -

2x A 4 AA battery holder: http://www.solarbotics.com/products/bholdaa_4_cell/  5.50$  - 2x because it's cheap

1x A HXT900 servo: http://www.solarbotics.com/products/25500/   5.85$

1x A Sharp distance sensor: http://www.solarbotics.com/products/35238/  11.95$

15x R/Y/W http://www.solarbotics.com/products/sled/  4.50$

1x The µBotino V3 Kit:  µBotino  27$   / keyed or regular, whatever Ro-Bot-X thinks fits my needs as I don't know the difference :).

Programming cable:  http://robotxdesigns.ca/2011/01/17/usb-serial-cable-5v/  8$

@ Ro-Bot-X can you send me 2 sensor cables? I will pay for them, but I'd rather have two than only 1, just in case.

1x book:   Arduino Robotics 

Makes a total of (book excluded) 74.26$

So, if you say that's a solid order and I will be able to more or less follow the SHR, I'll hit the order buttons :)




Sounds good. I would add a ball caster to your order, pick one from here: http://www.solarbotics.com/motors_accessories/casters/

To help you pick one, you should know that the distance from the motor bottom to the ground is about 7/8". So, if you will use a piece of plastic or plywood 1/4" thick as a chassis base, you need a 1/2" caster. The casters have some spacers, so you can add some more thickness if needed.

As for the sensor cables, just add a shipment to Canada to your order, besides the shipment to your place (the States I guess).

Thank you!

Ok, I'll order the things I've listed + the ball caster + 1x Weller Soldering Station
I live in Canada not the States.

Sorry might be stupid question, but what do you mean by "As for the sensor cables, just add a shipment to Canada to your order, besides the shipment to your place (the States I guess)."


When you place an order on my site you have to add a shipment fee to your cart befor the checkout button to appear. I have flat fees, $2 for Canada, $4 for the States and $6 for International. Since you live in Canada, add to your cart 2 shipments, one for the actual shipping and a second shipment to account for the sensor cables that are not listed on the site.

I recall one of my books suggesting a nicely rounded drawer pull in lieu of a ball caster. I was just wondering why ball casters were pushed so hard.

I hope I'm not bothering you guys.

My almost final cart looks like this (Arduino and cable not included as I'm not ordering those parts from the shop):

1x Sharp Analog Distance Sensor 10-80cm

1x HXT900 9g / 1.6kg / .12sec Micro Servo

2x 4 x AA Battery Holder

2x GM2/3/8/9/17 with GMPW

1x Heat Shrink Kit

1x Female-to-Female 100mm jumper wires

1x Male-to-Male 100mm jumper wires

20x Standard LED

I can use the Battery Holder as base right? Or can you recommend a chassis only (without any electronics or whatsoever)?

Ro-Bot-X suggested to get a ball caster as well, I have no ideao what that is used for :P.


Take a look at this robot. It uses a plastic plate as a chassis where all parts are mounted. The ball caster is the third wheel of the robot, while the SHR just balances on his 2 drive wheels.