Let's Make Robots!

Using a wiimote with processing to control your robots

Communicates with your pc to control your robot
FireTracker.zip1.16 KB

The wiimote is a really cool controller to use with your robots. It has many buttons, accelerometers and even a camera which tells the coordinates of the four principal IR emitters that it sees.

There are many examples of applications using it, some of the most populars are from Johnny Chung Lee. But there are much more, just search for "wiimote" or "wiimote robot" on youtube or google. Here on LMR we have some examples too:

And others with just its camera:

But I wanted to use it, without having to hack it, to communicate with processing and control my robot TheBox.

On my computer I have installed WIDCOMM bluetooth software which I found here.

If you've never used processing you should take a look here

To install the processing libraries I followed this tutorial.

I had some problems placing the folders so here is a simple scheme:

+ Prossessing

    + libraries

        + Loc

            + library

                - Loc.jar

            + lll

                + Loc

                     - ...

        + wrj4P5

            + library

                - bluecove-2.1.0.jar

                - bluecove-gpl-2.1.0.jar

                - WiiRemoteJ.jar

                - wrj4P5.jar

                - Loc.jar (optional)

            + lll

                + wrj4P5     

                    - ...

To test if it is all working you can try these examples found here:

If they work, you can pass to the next step, the serial communication with your robot.

The application MyFirstWii is really easy to adapt. On the movie you can see my robot TheBox using it.

All you have to do is to import the serial library, create a serial object, define the COM port & the baud rate and add the serial communication where the data about the buttons is analyzed. Here is an example:

import processing.serial.*;

import lll.wrj4P5.*;

Wrj4P5 wii;

Serial TheBox;

void setup() {


  wii=new Wrj4P5(this);


  TheBox = new Serial(this, "COM5", 4800);

void draw() {





  rotateX((int) (wii.rimokon.senced.x*30+300));

  rotateY((int) (wii.rimokon.senced.y*30+300));

  rotateZ((int) (wii.rimokon.senced.z*30+300));



void buttonPressed(RimokonEvent evt, int rid) {

   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.TWO)) println("2");

   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.ONE)) println("1");

   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.B)) {




   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.A)) println("A");

   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.MINUS)) println("Minus");

   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.HOME)) println("Home");

   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.LEFT)){




   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.RIGHT)){




   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.DOWN)){




   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.UP)){




   if (evt.wasPressed(RimokonEvent.PLUS)) println("Plus");


I didn't found the IR Sensor Tesr application  easy to understand and modify, so I decided to write a new one which I believe it's more practical to use:


import lll.wrj4P5.*;

import lll.Loc.*;


Wrj4P5 wii;


float x;

float y;

float w;

float h;


//Change here:

 //Size of the window

   int camWidth = 512;

   int camHeight = 384;

 //Number of IR Emmiters that you want to track

   int IREmitters = 4;



void setup() {


  wii=new Wrj4P5(this).connect(Wrj4P5.IR);




void draw() { 

//Defines Background color



//Draws ir emitters

  for (int i=0;i<IREmitters;i++) {

    Loc p=wii.rimokon.irLights[i];

    if (p.x>-1) {

     // Reads the value sent by the wiimote and multiplicities them by the size of the window






     //Prints the values to the console


       print(" ");


       print(" ");


       print(" ");



     //Draws the circles



       ellipse(x, y, w, h);


     //Draws the lines



       line(0,y,camWidth, y);







I developed this code and created another application to my robot which you can download here. It seems to work well, but how the robot is having some motors problems, I didn't had chance to test it with it, but you can see the test I did on the second movie. The application uses this library




Comments, advices, doubts and suggestions are always welcome! :)

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are you serious? how can a drill battery supplies 100Amps? the small resistance of the wires between battery and motor would make them burn!

After reading your comment I tested one again and didn't passed the 9A.

Their from these cheap ones:

When used in a drill, they usually use a clutch so they never really stall. If there is no clutch or set to "drill mode", the user normally lets off the trigger when the thing stops spinning. If one were to continue to stall the motor, it does pull upwards of 50 or 60 amps --all the way up to 100 or more (depending on the drill) and either a thermal shut-down happens or an internal, self-resetable fuse kicks in.

Look, all I am saying is that I have melted traces on the PCB and "welded" my relays shut. Easy solution is A) don't let them stall and B) use a fuse, period.

BTW --when a MOSFET fries, it stays "on"...


I can vouch for that..  (remove breakables from the front of bot when testing)

Yes I understand now, I am searching for a termical or electromecanical security shutdown, and I think I won't remove the cluch (is this what I think it is, some mecanical part who limit the torque?), and use weaker drills than you: I just need to move a small robot.

I am still doing research, and I found someone who told to buy driver on eBay. I don't know what you think about eBay, but I found this:



I am sure it won't handle 110 A as said, but maybe it could handle the current of the drill motors? I just realize that it would be nescessary to buy 2 of them, 1 for each motor, and it means it will be more expensive than designing oneself....

I have some old drill motors (but useless because without gearbox) and I have tried to measure the current, but it seems my multimeter don't work in amp mode (maybe the fuse) but I powered it with an old PC alimentation:

It works on the 5V channel, wich is limited to 16A, but in doesn't works (my alimentation power down for saving itself) on the 12V channel, wich is limited to 7A. So I guess it use between 7 and 16 Amps, wich is quite big for no efforts current! with the gearbox it will be more, and with 2kgs of robot to move it will be much more ^^


And by the way, I have a good news! I succesfull installed jmyron, controlp5 etc... and I am testing TheBox's sketches and trying to adapt them to my robot (we don't have the same way to send orders) and I will give you a feedback soon.