Robot Parts


I've been programming for a long time & have always wanted to move a project out of the virtual world & into reality, hence the desire to build a programmable robot. I spent a lot of time looking around & nothing ever really caught my attention. I did stumble upon David Cook's, Robot Building for Beginners which I think is a great book.

After working through the book I decided to go buy myself either a robot or a kit. Nothing really caught by eye until I stumbled upon the Mark III Robot Project. I'd never before held a soldering iron so I was a bit intimidated but the prebuilt projects are really expensive, and I'm really cheap, so there you have it. It only took a couple of days to put together and has been great fun since.

My goal is a simple device that can sweep my driveway. I've already a RoboMower (see my review here). My plan is to use the MarkIII brain & sensors on a larger base with a yard vac. When this is done I'd also like to work on something to sweep my store. So far there are only two bits keeping this project from being complete:

  • I'm using this h-bridge design but need to figure out how to attach the MOSFETs
  • the motors have a built-in tach. but I need to work on getting the output to drive a TTL line (currently the output is 0.0v or 0.4v and I need 0.0V and 5.0V
Progress is being made on both fronts. The programming was trivial and is already done. The tach sensors will be a huge help in being able to drive a straight line.

Currently, I'm programming it in picbsc but am thinking of writing a C compiler instead.

Bits of Interest

The following are things I've discovered or done.