Hackbug Spider (Squidward)
UPDATE 5/27/2014 - Added new photos at the bottom and a video of the head looking up and down.
I have a hexbug spider that the wife picked up for me @ the thrift store for a dollar. It had no remote control with it though. Not a problem though because I wanted to hack it of course!
Of course this guy sat on the shelf for a year before I got the motivation to start hacking, but I dug into it last weekend. I pulled a picaxe 20m2 board from another old project (that was dead) to use for the 'brain'. I scored a lipo & charger circuit from a portable speaker for a music player that had a broken audio cord.
Reading up on the stock circuit, I decided to pull off the uC from the original hexbug board with a dremel w/ cutoff wheel and splice in the connections from the 20m2 into the existing motor driver. I also added another motor into the location that the batteries used to reside, it will control the head allowing it to look down to see if any dangerous drop off is ahead. I plan to use a simple transistor as a driver for this motor.
Thanks to Hoff's tip for lighting up your ultrasonic sensors, I added red/green bi-color led's to the 'eyes'.
I plan to have a piezo and IR reciever, along with whatever else I can add until I use up the pins. I'll update here as progress is made!
Here are some photos of current progress.
Here is the original motor driver chip that has been spliced into. It still controls the walking and turning motors.
I used some flat cable from an old toy for the wires connecting the head to the motors, proximity sensor, and battery.
I added this piano switch so I can route the sensor outputs and V+ to switches, allowing for disabling for testing. You can see the momentary finger switch to the right of the piano switch. It is superglued to the back of the piano switch, and will allow the bot to know when it's head is 'top dead center'.
Here is the sharp proximity sensor, mounted in the place the stock circuit board used to reside.
I plan to use it to count the legs as a crude form of dead reconing.
I had to heat a wire up and poke it thru the nylon gear to make a hole.
I used a small bit of copper tube as a spacer to allow the arm to clear the shaft & protrusion at the center of the gear.
A tiny ball of solder holds the wire from slipping thru the hole in the gear.
Well that's all for now folks, but I hope to wrap up the soldering soon and move on to programming.
So stay tuned.