Let's Make Robots!

Most versatile set of parts

I am really interested in building robots and have some experience building them and programming them in my school.

I've looked at the "Start Here" page, and while it seems very neat, it looked like you could not really assemble or take apart the finished robot. 

 

I was wondering if there was a good investment to be made in parts that could be reused. 

Other than that, I'd appreciate any other recommendation for robot kits or parts. I've looked at the Raspberry Pi, which looks very interesting but I am not sure of the capability or viability of using that computer.

 

Thanks!

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From a mecanical point of view I recommend Meccano. It's a great frame work to build any robot with.

I use it myself...

This is very true, Meccano is great for quickly building a good frame, and you don't have to look far to find cheap Meccano alternatives.

Rasp Pi is a good educational computer but its a "computer" and not a "µprocessor". You can use it definitely as it has a lot more processing capabilities but the truth is, very little of that capability is going to be used in reality untill you are not building something as complex as a mars rover or a full 6 feet tall humanoid with more than a thousand odd sensors. Instead, go for the Picaxe or Arduino or other µs. Picaxe and Arduino are mentioned specifically as Picaxe is well documented and easy to learn while there are a ton of robots out there that use Arduino (or Picaxe).

Another point you raised was the reuseability of the parts of SHR. Well in one sentence, they are reuseable and you can reuse it in many other projects that require similar parts.

The kit you need to buy depends on 3 things-

  1. What do you want to make?
  2. How much money you have in your pocket?
  3. How much time and knowledge you have?

For example- I want to build a base for SHR. There are a lot of ways to go. I have already answered question no. 1 with my objective. Answer to question 2 is money. If I have loads of money, I can probabaly buy a 3D printer and print it myself. If I have less amount of money, I can request someone to make it for me and send it. Then it also depends on knowledge and time. If you don't know how to print 3D stuff and don't have enough time or patience to learn how to do so, its better to order it. Then again, if you want your parts tomorrow and you are sitting next to the 3D printer you bought but don't know how to run and it'll take the seller 3 days to ship your parts, its better to learn how to 3D print...

You can see for yourself the answer is complex. All of us are problem solvers. When a bot is made, the person who made it has solved a problem. While we can help you with the specifics like how to 3D print or give you our opinions on how good a 3D printer is, it's your decision to buy it. Maybe after buying a good printer, you can face other problems on how to run it. You have to solve a few of these problems yourself and I'm sure whatever you'll come up with will be awesome!!

and i started with the picaxe in a modular mode (ie my robot is designed to evolve over time with improved sections)

my robot

i also have a raspberry which im just now learning how to use and frankly i think i will end up with the raspberry talking to the picaxe with rasp being the brain and pic being the nervous system - but not just yet... (cos frankly its a whole bunch of steps ahead of myself)

what i will say tho is that the SHR and all its spinoffs are definitly something you can pull apart - mainly cos cannableising gadgets is a major part of electronics - if all thats holding it together is selotape and a few pin-to-pin connectors that suddenly becomes a LOT easier

 

You can reuse all the parts of the start here robot!

 

Arduino ,PicAxe, or Basic stamp (BS2) are 3 good starter mC (micro controller ) the Raspberry PI is a Linx based OBC (one board computer ) not the best choice for a beginner , i have no good suggestions for construction kits , all i have used in the past is a hack saw, drill and a screw driver and build my own frame / body from what ever i could find

CTC has a web shop you may find some of what your looking for there or you could ask him if he would make some parts for you, it's just a thought,

http://rocketbrandstudios.com/

I'm not sure why you say you could not take the start here robot apart and reuse the parts. The picaxe board is meant to be used again and again in different projects.
But before pulling it apart a little imagination could take the SHR further and Frits encourages you to do this.
The raspberry pi is a computer and while it will certainly turn up in robots is not really a starting point for robotics.

Raspberry PI for a starter robot is like having a Bugatti Veyron to take your cat to the vet down the street.

I don't know what you mean by "I've looked at the "Start Here" page, and while it seems very neat, it looked like you could not really assemble or take apart the finished robot."

Well, I kind of to know what you're saying, but it doesn't make sense...