Let's Make Robots!


Follows FSHPC (Fritz' Start Here Posted Code), assists in product placement

UPDATE: This project is closed. I'm using the (working) parts for a new bot. But I had a battery question (below).


So, I created my own first robot following the Start Here instructions. I was only able to get one picture:


I decided to upgrade the robot itself to look more presentable when i tried to show it off on my favorite website. I would also document this build, step by step.


1 Picaxe 28 project board

1 4 AA battery case from RadioShack

1 futaba s3003 servo

1 sharp ir sensor, attached to servo wheel

2 piece-of-crab DC motors from SolarBotics

1+ Red Stribe Jamaican Lager

To each piece-of-crap DC motors from Solarbotics, I've soldered a female jumper. I've also soldered header pins to my project board, for easy hookup/unhookup of motors and sensors.


Sensor hot-glued onto the servo wheel:


 I chose the RadioShack battery case because it had a handy on/off switch. I attached the piece-of-crap DC motors to the removable lid so I don't have to disassemble it to change batteries.


Attach a piece of paint-mixer stick on which to place the servo. A 25-cent plastic toy bubble works as the front wheel.

This leaves some "trunk space" under the power box, where i can tuck away all the extra the wires.


While tucking connecting the sensor and tucking the wires underneath, disaster struck. the terminal on one of the piece-of-crap Solarbotics DC motor broke. Off. All the way inside the housing:


.... which pretty much puts that motor out of commision until I can get a replacement. 

...To be continued ...



okay, so I haven't found new motors for these gears. Instead, I got a Tamiya twin gearbox. It looks so much different that it will end up being a new robot entirely. So this one is finished. Done for.

However, this project brought up a concern:


The 4 AA battery pack in the picture does not power my 28x project board. I've tested it; 5.25V. But when I connect it to the project board, nothing happens. At all. The first time I connected it, my picaxe got REALLY hot, really quick. So I disconnected it until I could figure out what was going on. I tried monkeying around with it again, and now it doesn't power the board. Any ideas why this would be?


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well... f***. That really sucks.....
I have a motor with the same problem. I managed to get a pair of motors that could be good for small bots, and one of them has a terminal broken off.

Ah man that sucks. I have those same motors on order now.. I think I`ll chuck a dab of hot glue on the terminals as soon as I attach wires.

You could try finding some small hobby motors to pop in instead, or even pull the plastic back off the motor and see if theres anything left inside to solder on to.. worth a try maybe :)

at the point of breaking something, I think the instruction to drink the redstripe(or other tasty beverage) should be in there....

This seems to work when wrenching on my car, so I'd assume it would work well on bots too.  :) 

I see a potential problem. While Red Stripe is a good lager, Guinness or Smiddicks is the official beer of robot building.

Beer and tools or motorized vehicles always ends bad.

First build, then get hammered.

I only ever touch alcohol during robot work when I'm prototyping with Lego Mindstorms. As soon as glue gun and soldier iron is around I drink coffee. But, be warned, to strong coffe makes your hands shake...


/ vzz-clck-"Maneuver"

All this robotics intimidates me so much, I need a few beers to get the courage to try assembling anything ...

And of course, the beer helps remind me why I've gotten into robotics in the first place: a robot that can bring me beer!!! Doesn't everybody want that?

BTW I had the same thing happen. I started putting a glob of solder on all of the leads after I got a wire on them. This helps to keep them from flexing and breaking. Hot glue would work too, but I had the soldering iron in my hand at the time...

Does not seem like anyone wishes to be the bearer of bad tidings. Or else folks just miss updates in the description. At any rate, I think your PICAxe got fried, possibly from a short, or from the battery plugged in backwards or something. Chips getting hot is always a Bad Thing. Sometimes they can be recovered, but usually it means they popped one of those little bits of tracks inside. It might be possible just to replace the chip, not the whole board. I notice the boards usually have sockets for the chips, and this can be a slip up point, but allows easy fixes. I've plugged chips into sockets, shifting just one row and fried devices before. And plugged in chips reversed too. Anyway, a new chip can be had here :


Or Here (28xA) : http://www.hvwtech.com/products_view.asp?ProductID=485

Or Here, (28x1)  :  http://www.hvwtech.com/products_view.asp?ProductID=486

Don't know about the first link, Advanced Micro Circuit (World Educational?) but HVWTech has been good.  Hope you ahve better luck, sounds like this build has been a rough start.

no, the picaxe still works with other battery packs. It just doesn't work with that particular battery pack.