Let's Make Robots!

Ball-E (Bugs worked out!)

Base_Bottom.JPG1.58 MB
Insides_Out.JPG1.41 MB

This is my second robot. It's going to run off of an Arduino Diecimila. It will have 3 servos, used for movement. I currently have 2 of them up and running. My plan is to take a 3rd, and suspend weight (about a pound of polymorph or lead) from it. I will use it to keep the base paralell with the ground.

It will drive in a wierd way: the 2 servos I already have will rotate, trying to turn the platform. As the platform is weighed down by the 3rd servo and its load, the platform will stay steady, as the ball turns forward or backward around it. To turn, the 3rd servo tilts the weight towards either drive servo, while the ball is spinning forward or backward. If you don't get this, think about the Earth. The north and south poles are where the F/B servos are. The equator is the line where the bottom of the ball touches the floor. As the ball tilts to one 'pole', it will rotate the platform inside. Then when the weight evens out again, the ball goes back on the equator, but with the orientation different, it will be facing a new direction.

Base%20Bottom.JPGIts only sensor so far will be a long distance Sharp IR, as I have heard they can see through plastic.



Update: August 13, 2009

My Arduino Diecimila came! I'm working full tilt to ge this 'bot done now. I can order new parts, such as my 3rd servo, and the handful of sensors...


I now have all I need to finish it. its only a matter of time...


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It was an ATMEGA 328 or whatever. i had the wrong thing selected.

Looks a cool project Benbo!!    ;)

Did you get the Arduino working???

Need an update Benbo. Did you try resetting the Arduino after clicking upload? It should take 2-3 seconds not hours.
You may need to press the reset button after clicking "Upload". I think a certain batch of Arduinos has a wrong resistor or something like that. Hope it helps.
Looks cool , Ball-E sounds neat.
Here's a recent Instructable that might help.

Both our designs are from popular science...

those are valid points. i'll just need to sense them early then.  (my servos are weak, so it'll go slow) which has better range, a sharp IR or a FritsLDR? does anyone know of any instructions on a homemade Sharp IR?

If it gets any speed up then with a pound of weight inside it will be "Ankle breaker"

Even going slow it will have trouble turning in time to avoid obstacles so perhaps "Ball of Destruction!" will be an appropriate name :D


Looking forward to seeing the rest of it. I like the name Ball-E by the way :)