Let's Make Robots!

Minimum material for First Robot

Hello Folks,

Im considering building first robot and would like to purchase this kit


I see that LMR is using a ''Shield'' over his Arduino or PIC. Whats the purpose of it.

Could I simply be using this yourduino boards with motor and servo and voila? Would I be missing anything without a shield.

I also notice that there seems to be a IC already on the yourduino board, would I need extra IC ?



Bronco Billy

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i bought this kit to learn with


though yours gives more bang for oyur buck i think (though the oomlout one has some excellent walk throughs, and comes with a genuine arduino, if that counts for anything.

if you are new to arduino (as i am) i would suggest getting a motor shield, rather than messing around with H bridges. that way you just plug it in, wire it up and it works. no need to understand it before you get some movement (not that understanding it isnt good, but it helps to make some progress too). The adafruit motorshield, also availible from oomlout is rather fine.


though you do have to build it. Also, it comes with male headers only. you would be wise to get some extra long female headers, so that you can still pin cables into the remaining usable pins on the board. After that you need some running gear! Some people use toy "robots", which already have gears, motors, wheels or tracks, and a battery case built in. Which is brilliant, if you can find one you like which you could canibalise. Otherwise, pick up some geared motors and wheels, to bolt onto a chasssis you your choice...

my running gear came from here


i bolted the motors, and wheels onto a home made chassis,mounted the motor shield and arduino on the top, and included two battery packs.

jobs a goodun

worth noting, you will probly need two power supplies (batteries). you CAN run the motors off the same battery as the arduino, but the load on the motors can make a "dirty" power supply, (unstable) which can cause the arduino to freak out or reset. better to have a pp3 9v cell for the arduino, and then a stack of higher capacity AAs (enough to supply your desired voltage) for the motors... hope this helps!

You can get lots of shields for Arduino, but the one you'll be most interested in is this:


It lets you control motors from the Arduino.  Without this, you'd need something like a pair of these:


They can be controlled directly off of the Arduino included in the kit.

Alternatively, you could get two of these sets:


and do what Gareth does here:


(I know it's going to sound like I have a little case of hero-worship going on here, but it's never a bad idea to copy a Gareth build.)

From the way you're phrasing the questions it sounds like you have some experience with electronics but maybe are a little unsure about your first steps into robotics (welcome to LMR by the way!)  The IC on the yourduino board (there are actually a few of them) is probably the Mega 328 that you're seeing, and if you want to, it never hurts to have a few extras of these on hand (along with a 16Mhz crystal, 2 22pf caps and an LM7805 for each as well as a few headers) so that if you get a robot working that you want to leave as a permanent project you can solder it up and still have the modular yourduino to experiment with.  Otherwise, you won't need any extra ICs, unless you decide to design your own motor shield, but it sounds like that's not something you want to do right away.


Oh yeah! continous rotation servos are SO EASY to use, and easy to mount too. no need for a motor shield either.

DC motors need to be driven by a "H" bridge. Many motor shields use an L293D.

If you try to drive a motor directly from ther Arduino then the motor won't turn and you could damage the Arduino.