Let's Make Robots!

Arexx Caterpillar robot program

Hello there. When I first saw the Caterpillar robot and the kit form of it in this website, I just had to get one, and now I do. While I enjoyed building it, unfortunately my problem is that I'm so far only a robot collector and not a robot builder or programmer, so the missing manual and CD sure didn't make that any easier for me. My Caterpillar robot is the AVR version with so far only a German manual online to help me program it. I have all the demonstration programs here that do load and work, but the main movement demo makes this Caterpillar not even worth the money as it slowly creeps forward 1 inch a minute with a gait that's even worse when moving backwards. The front feelers don't respond to object well and the tail doesn't respond at all. Worst part is that the auto lifting feature when it falls over actually makes it bend the wrong direction towards the floor, so that demo program is right down the toilet. I have no idea how to use C programming, I don't know how to alter the demo program and sure can't find a better program out there for this little wriggler. Then there's the Picaxe version who's manual seems to tell me that it actually does come with a good enough program that will make it behave just like the robot I've seen in the videos. So if in any other case where I will never get to learn C programming and will never find a better program for the Caterpillar either, shouldn't it be possible to just replace the whole AVR board with a Picaxe one and get a good, finished program for it that way so I can actually enjoy this robot for once? As said, I don't know anything about programming stuff, but would this be the same board that's on the Picaxe Caterpillar that I could basically replace the other one with? http://www.picaxe.com/Hardware/Starter-Packs/PICAXE-28-Starter-Pack/ Thanks for any help with this.

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Then I will look into this, thanks. Couldn't hurt to learn a new program anyway when I want to program my own robots later on.

Hello to the original creator, thanks for the reply. Yes I've seen your work in this website before and it was the main reason why I wanted to get the kit, so thanks for the good work. I also read in the forums that you don't know how to program the C version either, which is why I didn't send you a personal message to ask about mine. Thanks for letting me know for sure I can just swap the main board over to a Picaxe, I suppose the same roll sensor board can be used anyway? Still I think I might look into learning C first now that I know I have another option if all else fails. Though in my busy schedule I was hoping to learn only one programming language for the most common micro controller out there, and so far I don't know the ranking of any of them...

Ultimately I recommend changing to a Micro Magician V2. The 3-axis accelerometer will work far better than the tilt switches on the original boards and the Arduino C is easier to learn.


I designed the original caterpillar and wrote the original picaxe code. I had nothing to do with the "C" language version and like you I can't program in C. It seems you have three choices: 1) learn C 2) buy a picaxe controller from Dagu and swap them over 3) buy a micro magician and learn to program in Arduino C Option 1 is the cheapest, 2 & 3 probably cost about the same. Option 2 means you don't have to program. Option 3 is probably the best because Arduino C is easy to learn and then you can get it to do more.