Here I’m bringing to the table a concept idea for a different robot project. I’ve been researching about the 3pi, then, thanks to Ben I’ve jumped to orangutan till I’ve dicided to stop in order to get my concept back to basics and start from scratch.
I’m seduced by the great movement quality of the 3pi. That’s my starting point. I want to make a strong platform inspired on its amazing line tracking capability. The challenge is that I want it to work with several pounds over it moving a big animatronic figure around the floor.
#1 - Basically I don’t need all those extra features from the 3pi. My only required behaviour is “move forward following the line as smooth as posible”. I’m an industrial designer, electronics is just a basic on my repertory so analizing pros and cons I’ve started to cancel things out of my equation.
#2 - I was focused on the 3pi kind of robot at the begining wich performs the movement by stopping and running 2 individual powered wheels. That works great, but in that particular super small scale. With a tall figure, stop and accelerate continuously could make it to get out of balance or just look really bad.
#3 - The power of the processing board must be independent from the motor regarding it big load.
#4 - Substitute the “tank style” steering for something more continuous and stable.
So, having some clear expectations in mind, here is the first concept on paper.
As you can see, regardless the design, it’s all about to put some concept parts together in order to start talking about.
There is 2 parts on this setup. The control or processing unit (individual powered @ 5V) wich controls the servo based on the sensor input; and a 3 wheels set where only one provides movement to the unit (regardless how) it’s just a mechanism to provide motion in only one direction with no other control that a switch. It’s powered up by an independent battery. The small wheel in the back is part of the steering mechanism to control the platform direction.
Here comes the fun. I belive in this “steering” mechanism as a great way to improve the movement to get a really smooth rite. We’ve got the “maestro” wich is a great controller for servos plus its capability to work with an individual power supply (perfect for a big 8kg servo).
The challenge now consist in “communication”. There is an interesting QTR 8RC sensor available here, the thing is, how to interact with maestro? Is it possible to make it to work with 8 IR? Is any other part required?
That’s the first step.
I’m going to pause this post here in order to keep my research and see what else to ad as well as you guys input.
Your comment is very appreciated.