Let's Make Robots!

Mannys First Robot.

Travel around mindlessly. Navigate around via ultrasound.

Hi, i am new here and this is my first robot.

Inspired by the awesome tutorial by FritsL.
Of course, i made my own modifications. I wanted the tread-look to have it crawl around in my livingroom.
I salvaged parts from my old Computer Chassi and some parts from my broken 19" LCD Screen.

Of course, this thing falls apart a little bit now and then due to the doubble-sided rubber-tape not being strong enough.
The video shown is the first inital test.
I think i might have to tweak the AI of course and the amount of turning when encountered with an obstacle.

This stuff is real fun.
Gonna be doing more robots in the future.

Stuff to add to this guy:

1. Speaker (He will make noise and play different movie-themes in different situations.)

2. Diodes! (Of course. Need to glow in the dark. Green when pushing forward and red when obstacle is precent)

3. Powerswitch (Gotta make it easier to turn on and off.

4. Something awesome.


Thanks for this great site.



Added another video using code from Frits. However, while taping this video he managed to update the code :o
In this update it also has:

1. Speaker

2. Diode

3. Powerswitch

So i guess all that is left to physically add at this point would be "Something awesome"



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gratz.. greath robot, much better look then mines.. keep going, you are in the good way..

 (i can't w8 until the ultrasonds sensors arrive my home)


/ Fritsl


Hey, that's looking good. You can definitely speed up the scanning to make it react faster, as you get more comfortable with it. The sonar pulse takes a maximum of 50ms to be measured (usually less), so it can scan all three directions practically as fast as the servo can move to those places. The measuring itself takes almost no time. Just be sure, like Frits said, that the head doesn't move while the red light is flashing.

And yeah, hot glue definitely holds things together better than two-sided tape. It IS a step up on the 'permanent' scale, but even hot glue can usually be cut off if you change your mind :)

Nice work, keep it up.


Interesting. I shall optimize the code right away.

I was also thinking about having it make a 180 turn if all directions are blocked.
A hot glue gun may very well be my next purchase.
There was a bunch of purchases for me to get started, i had to get soldering equipment and tools and stuff like that.

Does anyone know a good way of making the speaker sound louder? The volume is slightly low at the moment so i kindof want to make it louder :)


There's something else I've found that can have a dramatic effect on how loud a speaker is. If you're using just a bare speaker, try cupping your hand around it, to form a sort of tube. The idea is to physically separate the air above the speaker from the air below it. I've found that when you do that, many speakers get MUCH louder, especially in the lower frequencies, and they sound much better. Of course, holding your hand around it wouldn't be a permanent solution, but building a little box with a hole in the top for the speaker to sit in could work. I've thought of buying some of those plastic "project enclosures" they have at Radio Shack, and just cutting a hole in the top the size of the speaker and hot-gluing it in.

Let me know if my explanation isn't clear, I can take a picture of the 'cupping your hand around the speaker' thing if you need it. But if you play around with it a bit, you should figure out what I mean.



So there is no way of enhancing the signal between the output and the speaker, then?
Its not really that important, i was just curious :)

Oh, sure there are, you can build a simple audio amplifier to make the signal louder, it just gets a little more complicated because there's more circuitry involved. Try this page for several examples of schematics for audio amplifiers. I've never actually built one of these circuits, so I can't really offer much help other than to point you to the site :) I'd actually be curious to hear how it goes if you do build one, because it's something I might want to try in the future.


A amall amp is one of the typical thing you can buy in a kit at hobby-electronics stores..

But look around, that old PC-speaker over in the corner has a build in amp, it is even in stero, so you can mix 2 autdio signals.. 

/ Fritsl

IMHO you should not hard-code 180-turns, but let the robot decide when it is time to turn; try to make it look in the direction it is turning towards, or read this, to put it short :)

I know you should remember to turn off your speaker afterwards - read this - but turning up volume (without an amplifier) is only possible by selecting a different speaker. There is a HUGE difference in the volume they make.

/ Fritsl