Let's Make Robots!

Welcome to The Chair Challenge! (Part II - the real challenge)

I was in the middle of writing "The Chair Challenge" here on the site, and then we got server-problems with this site.

Result was that an unfinished competition went un air, unintended! And before I knew it, it was won by JIP with this robot. But then i realized that hes robot did not in fact circle all the legs of the chair, and he was disqualified!

Therefore "The Chair Challenge" is now "The Chair Challenge! (Part II)" - we try again, and this time the rules are a little different :)


The Chair Challenge! (Part II)

Make a robot that drives, walks, rolls.. or in any other way makes it´s way around the 4 legs of a chair!

Rules of this competition:

  1. Robot can be placed in any position and place operator prefers before start
  2. Robot must then spin around it´s own center at least 10 times before step 3. (so we know it is actually navigating on it´s own)
  3. Now the robot should try to drive around each of the 4 legs of a chair, like the orange arrow
This entire session must be captured on video, and posted on letsmakerobots.com

Additional rules and notes:

  • If your robot is too large for a chair, a table can be used
  • There should be no markings on the floor for the robot to follow
  • The robot must be autonomous, no remote-control of any kind
  • If you prefer, you can go the other way around, take legs in another pattern etc, as long as 4 cornered legs have ben circled once each
  • Plan is NOT to just hard-code the route, decissions and navigation should to some extend be made by the robot, based upon sensors of some kind

Extra bonus will be given for

  • Simplicity: the simpler the more street credibility!
  • Code: Dump your code so we all can admire!
  • Building instruction: Let us see what you have build!
  • Inginuity in general


Deadline: 15 of April 2008


The robot most voted for / with the highest score / the one that comes closest to meeting the challenge by 15 of April 2008 will win the price:

1 * Micro Serial Servo Controller and 2 servos (of editors choice)

In the case of a draw, this humble editor and judge will favour from the most "extra bonus point", and select the one winner.




This serial servo controller is a very compact solution for controlling up to eight radio control servos from a computer or microcontroller. The controller measures just 23 x 23mm, yet it is one of the most full-featured servo controllers available. Each servo speed and range can be controlled independently, the baud rate is detected automatically over a 1200-38400 bps range, and multiple units can be daisy-chained on one serial line to control up to 128 servos.

Three status LEDs and an integrated level converter for RS-232 applications get you up and running quickly. The micro serial servo controller is dwarfed by even a standard servo, but it can control any standard RC servos, including giant 1/4-scale servos.

The servo controller is less than half the size of most 16-channel servo controllers. This means that the micro servo controller is an ideal solution even if you need to control more than eight servos, as in the case of a six-legged walking robot. Having multiple smaller controllers means less of a wiring mess since servos in one section of the robot can be connected to a more local controller.

The back side of the board has all of the ports labelled, and two mounting holes allow you to secure the controller to your project. The logic supply and the servo supply can be tied together for single-battery operation, or the on-board voltage regulator allows the logic supply to be as high as 16V.


/ Frits

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Hehe, hilarious story. Competition won before started :P

Anyway, I must say i really admire how much energy you put into this community. All these competitions, tutorials and robots you've made. The whole mood of a community is lifted when the admin is passionate for it!

Thanks :)

/ Frits 

Did I lose you all now? Is anyone going for this challenge?

I am on my way with a "turtle-challenge": Who can make a robot that can turn itself around if it is upside down?

/ Frits 

If you really want me to I can rebuild my lego robot and try to fool you again :-)...

- Jimmy

I really want you to!

/ Frits 

Hello Fritsl,

  Whats the last day to post the movie? 14? or 15?

  I'm new with robots, but i will try to make it work.. just saw ur website today, and the chanlenge end is close, but i will do my  best..


  About the turtle, it is for close? i wold love to work on if after the chaire project =P

  Think we have here a good comunity where we can lear one with eatch others.


See ya soon ,


Hey - I don´t think it will be a problem to enter the contest later :) The dat was just set to "something", it was the first challenge - you will win if you can make it, I am sure - and a late entry is no problem if you actually complete the challenge!

/ Fritsl


I'm working on the code rigth now, think will be ready soon.

Thanks for the kind words, but i like to meet all the chalenge rulz =] i will try to finish it in time for self plesure.

It will not be any cute code, but if it works, is what is important for now.


PS - I'm using IR to detect chair legs, since don't have Ultra Sound Rage Finders yeath.


My chalenge solution , all the comments are welcome.
The challenge is won by  TigPT :)