Let's Make Robots!

LineIronBot (Hacked Iron Line Follower)

Iron.bas2.04 KB

LineIronBot is my latest robot. I have hacked my dead iron and now it is functioning line follower robot! :D

I was thinking of building a line follower for a few months now, even ordered bunch of reflectance sensors, but real inspiration did not visit me till my wife told me we need a new iron :D I looked at our old one and told myself: This is going to be my line follower robot! :) 

So, The parts used so far:

  • Old electric iron :D
  • Picaxe 28 pin project board and Picaxe 28x1 MCU
  • 2 x geared motors from Dagu
  • 2 wheels ripped off from cheapy toy
  • Ball caster
  • Blue LED
  • 3 x QDR1114 reflectance sensors 
  • Switch
  • Resistors: 1x330R, 1x100R, 3x10K
  • Wires
  • Battery holder
  • finally, 4 x NiMH AA rechargebles

First of all I had to get rid of heating element and cut off some plastic from inside to make some room for batteries and project board. Openings for wheels cut as well. These I got rid of:

Then components fixed inside:

Indicator replaced by an LED and switch fit in:

Line sensors soldered into piece of perfoboard and hot glued to chassis as well as ball caster and motors:


 Here are pictures of my hacked LineIronBot, complete and easy to store :D

I have attached a small test video, unfortunately I ran out of black insulating tape, so the track is very short :D

I'm thinking of adding more functionality to LineIronBot in future, possibly light seeking. And I want to use the temperature select dial for switching between line follow and light seek modes.

Update 28-Sep-2010

Finally I returned to this project to finish it. Thanks to Open OFFLINE robotics competition. I had to spend some time debugging the code and making it more robust for interruptions in line. I also added external programming socket, which is already became a tradition with my bots :D

The new video shows LineIronBot completing the competition track in little over 50 seconds. I have uploaded my code as well.


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
You would definetly prank people quite well with this autonomous iron! Haha! Very cool! Imagine them seeing it cross the road just in front of them.
now you have no excuse for your stripey clothes being unironed...

There are miniture smoke generators available from toy RC tanks and the like. I just removed one from my hacked 1/16 scale tank.  A bit noisy though, since it uses a small motor and crank to create some airflow,  the smoke looks awesome though.

 Nice Job.

WTF?! I cannot believe I missd this, that is SO COOOOL!


We are working on a system to LMR III so that cool stuff will not be lost, this is definatly going to be entered into what will soon be known as The Chillout Zone!!

I love it!! More!

(brace yourself)

How long did it take to iron out the bugs?

Very creative use of a dead iron

Mon fils trouve l'idée génial ainsi que moi même.


That' s a crazy idea and a realy good looking robot, it's hard to imagine it's a modified one when you first look at it! great job

Креативненько ) Взять рубашку, нарисовать на ней линии, зигзагом, положить утюг и он сам погладит рубашку )))

Nice one Isotope, your idea is brilliant...
But, why why why did you not have an outline of a shirt?  Or was that an outline of a shirt???
Great work !