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Starting a robotics project

  1. Mar 14, 2008 #1
    So, I recently got the idea to build a robot, because a need a new project. I understand that it will become expensive, but i was wondering if I could get like a list of needed parts for this type of project.

    Not sure that this is the best move, but I'm planning on making the robot relatively large, four wheels, a web cam on top, etc. I was thinking about maybe using an air plane controller with two joysticks rather than the normal controllers with a wheel and a trigger.

    This seems like it'll get relatively complicated, considering I havent learned anything useful for this in High School, so... deciding I don't want to waste alot of money making mistakes.
     
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  3. Mar 14, 2008 #2

    Danger

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    Welcome to PF, Petite (no damned way am I going to bother typing out your whole name).
    To start with, the term 'relatively large' means nothing to us, since we don't know what it's relative to. To me, that would be something about the size of a car. I would definitely go with hydraulics for anything that I would build, since it would need some serious strength, using proportional solenoid valves. That would be multiple thousands of dollars down the tubes without even getting into control and feedback systems.
    To someone else, 'relatively large' might be smaller than an average cat. That would entail only small electric servo actuators and batteries.
     
  4. Mar 14, 2008 #3

    FredGarvin

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    I would highly recommend going to a Radio Shack or comparable and look for robot kits. That is the best way to learn. Make something that someone else has worked the bugs out on and then, after you have some experience, go and build something from scratch.
     
  5. Mar 14, 2008 #4
    Sorry, I was thinking about the size of like a shopping cart.

    What about just modding a prebuilt car? And would a battery be better than a gas powered robot for this type of "robot"
     
  6. Mar 14, 2008 #5

    Danger

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    That depends primarily upon what you want it to do. Generally speaking, electric is probably better. It's a lot easier to 'refuel', quieter, and you don't have to worry about gassing yourself to death if you use it indoors. Also, there's no need for a transmission/clutch assembly. Even in the hydraulic system that I mentioned earlier, I would use 12VDC electric pumps.
     
  7. Mar 14, 2008 #6

    RonL

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    http://www.societyofrobots.com/?gclid=CMuaruzojJICFSOCGgodIz1fEA

    http://www.battlebots.com/bnc_rules.asp
    Go to technical regulations, the first time i posted this the wrong link showed up, i didn't catch it till later. hope this one is right,

    These two links might be a little help, and a search " battlebots" will give a lot of websites to study.
    As Danger said hydraulics are good, and if you have a little skill and use of a lathe you can make some of your own small things.

    http://www.4qd.co.uk/

    4qd has a load of useful information, about controllers, and electrical power transmission.
    Do a lot of research, and make sure you know and understand what you need a part to accomplish, before you spend your money.:smile:

    Good luck, and have fun.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2008
  8. Mar 14, 2008 #7

    Integral

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    Get your high school to compete it the First robotic competetion. This is currently underway with the finals competions 17 - 19 Apr in Alanta Georgia.

    It is a fun game to wacth, if you poke around on the first site you should be able to watch videos of some of the regional events.

    Here is a pic of the robot we built this year. Didn't do as well as we would have liked to. Looking forward to next year.
     
  9. Mar 15, 2008 #8

    Danger

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    Wow, Int... that's a big bunch of aluminum. Does it do anything?
    Looks like a basketball free-throw device.
     
  10. Mar 15, 2008 #9
    Can someone point me in the right direction? I've looked through the first couple pages for hydraulics in rc cars, and it seems most of the stuff that comes up is for the suspension?
     
  11. Mar 15, 2008 #10

    Danger

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    I doubt very much that you'll find anything about hydraulic actuators in any site about RC toys. They're totally impractical for anything on that scale. There's an outside chance that they might be appropriate for your 'shopping cart' sized device, but I wouldn't count on it. I mentioned them in the first place only because I didn't know what size you were talking about. Hydraulics are for my kind of toys; ie: size somewhere between a large car and a small hotel.
     
  12. Mar 15, 2008 #11

    Integral

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    Here is a link to the parts list for a First robot. You can buy all sorts of cool stuff in there. Unfortunately, they expect to be paid.

    You will find pneumatics to more practical then hydraulics. We had 6 pneumatic cylinders on our robot. All driven by a small 12V DC compressor.

    These things are not cheap to built, teams need at least $10K to compete.

    Links on this page show the game we build the robot to play.
     
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