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Mixing things up with R0kker-bot...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009 10:17:48 PM America/New_York

 R0kker Robot Side ViewFor a while now, I have wanted to experiment with the rocker-bogie type chassis, read NASA Mars Rover, and seeing its mechanical merits. However, the time and effort needed to construct one has been preventing me from doing this. Creating this type of chassis without a significant time commitment is easier said then done, unless you already have the right set of components that play well together.

This is where the right blend of build-plate strips, Meccano parts and micro-motors come in handy to build the table-top version of NASA Mars Rover quickly - the 'R0kker-bot'. The build-plate construction system is a set of aluminum strips that can you can drill, bend and cut to any shape or form you wish. And just in case you're not up to speed on what Meccano is, you can look it up here; I highly doubt that though, as you are here and reading this, but just in case :).

The basic chassis setup, excluding wiring and electronics took three hours to complete. You can bolt together the main chassis in an hour using Meccano parts, and it takes another two hours to drill and attach the motors using build-plate aluminum strips. Most of those three hours went into trying to fit Meccano and build-plate components together nicely, and into ensuring that the dual-wheel arch frame has enough clearance for rotation and doesn't get stuck against the main robot body. Meccano’s large bolts do get in the way; therefore it is essential to make sure that there is enough clearance between the frame and the main body. In the picture below, you can see how the motor/wheel combination is attached to the build-plate aluminum strip and then to the Meccano part with regular Meccano bolts. Once the mechanical part was finished, I proceeded with getting everything wired up.

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The BUGGer gets upgrades

Tuesday, August 5, 2008 5:23:00 PM America/New_York

The days for the BUGGER of sitting on the bench-top and looking cute in its existing configuration are numbered. The BUGGER gets upgrades. BUGGER robot with AVRCam
It gets a spy cam and a transmitter to relay captured images back to base as well as a new receiver to accept new mission directions. The BUGGER becomes exceptional unmanned security sentry platform. So enough with talking, let's get to the visuals :) Here is the BUGGER with new modifications.

New additions list:

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BUGGer-the-robot is on its way...

Monday, July 28, 2008 5:23:00 PM America/New_York

What are we busy with? Lot's of things and they all happen in parallel. We are adding new build plate system to our product line up and to give you a taste of what you will be able to do with it, here is the picture of the robot that we put together to test the waters.

ATMega48-controlled BUGGER Robot The robot's name is 'BUGGER'. It's small, it's sturdy and it buggers on regardless of what's in front of it. Hence, the 'BUGGER' :)

We also spent some time last month to make Arduino IDE compatible with ATMega324 and ATMega48. The changes are not fully tested yet on both micros but we make them available, in case someone is willing to give them a try. The code that runs on the 'BUGGER' was created in Arduino IDE and compiled for ATMega48. We used Pololu's Baby Orangutang robot controller board (ATMega48 version) for the BUGGER, as you can see in the picture.

 

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