Let's Make Robots!


On-line store up and running!

I just published my first website: www.salvage-1.com and it should be live any minute now.

I will be adding items on a daily basis as I have over 2000 part numbers currently in stock as well as all types of unique and interesting items.

There will be certain core items, (like the soldering stations), that I will always sell but other items, (due to the nature of the surplus business), will be limited quanity. What that means is, when they're gone, they may be gone for good. I buy at auction every other Saturday so there will be new and different items added continously.

BLDC motor controlling, the hard way

I am going through two processes now...

The first, is removing the spider webs from electronics capabilities of yesterday ; The second, is (during this process) controlling an HDD 3-phase BLDC motor with arduino.

Yes, I know I can simply use an ESC component and save myself the hassle of "figuring it all out", simply plugging in the speed controller to the motor 3 pins, 12V battery and simple signal from my microcontroller (arduino) to set the speed/direction .. and voilla. That's it.

BUT..where's the fun in that??

Choosing a transistor

I've used two types of NPN transistors in the projects I've done so far and I've tried to investigate why, but my conclusion just doesn't seem to make sense (actually, I'm not sure if I've reached one...).

For use with an Arduino, I've used a PN2222 transistor:


Whereas, for BEAM solar bots, I've used the 2N3904:


Electronic components newbie help

Well I'm not technically a newbie, but I forgot a lot of this stuff so :P

Basically I was reading up on what are good general components to get, and I've made a cart with Jameco electronics (the easiest site for me to understand their ordering process).

What do you all think? Is this a good selection? (Note: the resistor assortment bag goes from 10 to 5.6m Ohms. I would assume this includes the K range of ohms, right?)


Which components are good for what (in terms of navigation)?

Hello All

I wonder if anyone could give a complete list (or a pointer to a source) of the various types of components that are usefull in determining the position and orientation of a robot. Essentially anything that is usefull in a complete navigation solution.

My initial thoughts are:

IR distance sensor - usefull for detecting obstacles

Sonar sensor - usefull for detecting obstacles

compass or magnometer - usefull for determining robot orientation. Apparantly when combined with an accelerometer one can have a tilt compensated compass.

attach components to supports like pvc, acrylic, wood, cardboard, polymorph
During the development of Farrusco, we tried a lot of different ways to attach components to PVC supports, from hot-glue, to screws and double side-tape. Because … Read more

Maintenance: components and unread posts

You know our Components section right? Most of the components in that database are automatically imported from a few vendors who are friendly enough to allow us access to their databases. Each time a new component is added to a vendor's catalog, our server imports it into ours. Changes in details like description and price are also automatically updated.

Salvaging components

Hello, I'm new to this site and to robotics, it looks like a great place to find knowledge and inspiration about robots so I signed in.

   I am currently waiting for an arduino board to start experimenting, so I am trying to salvage parts and componets from broken electronics (as much as possible)  to save some money. 

They arrived!


 The so long attended component arrived!...But now it is to late: it is their turn to wait, at least till next week end! Too many thinks to do at work!

Uff :-(



Improvements to Components & Solarbotics components on LMR

Hi, guys. I just wanted to keep you up to date on the improvements I've been working on for the site. As you probably know, a few months ago we imported the full Pololu product catalog into our Components section, and we've been talking about ways to make use of that nice big database we now have.

where to find connectors

I was following the "first robot" tutorial to get ideas on where to start and it said to buy some pins. they are great because the servo connectors just plug right onto them, but i cant find any similar connectors to put on the ends of my motor wires etc. its really hard to solder to the output pins so i would really appreciate it if anyone knows where they are available.


is it ok if im going to use 5v if i use the




1superbright LED

2 microswitch http://www.hvwtech.com/products_view.asp?ProductID=737 

im planning to do a robot based on frits design and blizz bot  but i will add some LED's for fun

Contents of the Electronics Surprise Box Revealed!

For any of you who have shopped around at the Electronics Goldmine (whom I highly recommend www.goldmine-elec.com) you may have been sceptical about ordering the electronics surprise box from the misc. section. Maybe you didn't know what was in it, would it be worth it, or what kinds of components and parts are in it. Well today is your lucky day because here is what came in mine! Now you can decide for yourself. (Note: not all surprise boxes contain the same typs of parts, it is purely random)

Getting Started

I want to get started, but I need help putting a decent started pack together. I know I need a board, download cable, etc, but what other toys should I start with?

 I want to be able to start off small: get a light to blink. Then move to getting several lights to blink in order or random order. Then I want to move onto attaching a motor and getting it to spin. Eventually I want to build a robot that will do all of my work, but baby steps right?