So with the holidays behind us, it is time to put away the decorations
and to get down to sacrificing that latest toy to the Robotic Gods.
What toys, electronic gizmos and holiday dumpster finds did Santa send
your way this year?
I eagarly await to hear of your discoveries. ;
My local Walmat had a 1/9th scale M1 Abrams tank that was about the
same size as last year's 1/6th Stuart tank. I think they still
From what I've heard the motors are quite powerful.
D. Jay Newman
I just picked up one of these. They are powerful, but noisy. I guess its
the gearbox that's noisy. I'm going to be converting it, I'll be pulling
out the radio and use my own radio link + controller + h-bridges.
Here's a photo of it unmodified:
Who has converted one of these? If you used encoders for odometry, what
did you use?
Rubber is more prone to stretch. Can be a bad thing on heavier vehicles
during turns. Even with keepers the tracks pop off.
Apart from metal, a single-piece rubber with fiber reinforcement (to
limit stretch) is probably the best and most durable all-around, but
these are hard to find, unless you own a conveyor belt company.
Funny you should mention that...*ahem* though I'm far from owning it.
Actually one of our products has to use a metal and plastic jointed belt
at high speeds. When something goes really wrong, metal goes flying.
What you end up with is a catastrophic failure without any real warning.
And you need to have replacement parts to fix it.
A rubber belt, even without fiberglass, at least gives you warning
signs. Either it shows obvious wear, or as it stretches you just need to
check the tension and adjust when necessary. On a treaded robot probably
the easiest way is to have a pulley in a slot that pushes down on the
top of the belt. If the belt falls off you can put it back on, (usually)
no harm done. And figure out a better idler arrangement.
Of course when I think of treaded homebuilt robots I am thinking of
smaller platforms using timing belts. No more than 20 pounds fully
loaded. I have an even smaller one, I used treads from an old
Are there any hackable vehicles that stood out in this year's offerings
I seem to see alot of larger car/truck offerings but they seem to be
more for "on road" (parking lot aka clear flat surface) than "off road"
With all the products playing to the retro interests of the baby
boomers, I am suprised that someone hasn't done a Heathkit or R2D2