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44 Small Inexpensive Robots part3




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This article is from the Robotics FAQ, by Kevin Dowling nivek@cs.cmu.edu with numerous contributions by others.

44 Small Inexpensive Robots part3



[73]Robotic Systems, Inc.
1102 West Glen River Road
Glendale, Wisconsin 53217
url: [74]http://www.robotic.com
contact: Clint Laskowski, President
tel: 414.821.7675
fax: 414.963.4825

For more information including comprehensive technical reports on
Stiquito, please see
[75]http://www.cs.indiana.edu/robotics/stiquito.html

See [76]ftp://www.cs.indiana.edu/pub/stiquito/ for an
overview of Stiquito and the files at Indiana.

Technical report TR 414 - "Stiquito II and Tensipede: Two
Easy-to-build Nitinol-propelled Robots" is available in FINAL DRAFT
via anonymous ftp from [77]ftp://cs.indiana.edu/pub/stiquito

The report is archived as four .hqx (binhex encoded) .sea (stuffit
lite self-extracting archive) Microsoft Word 4, 5 & 6, available on
PCs. Macs should be able to read and print word 4 documents.

"TSS Lynxmotion"

Technical Service and Solutions
104 Partridge Road
Pekin, IL 61554-1403
contact: Jim Frye
tel: 309.382.1254
net: [78]jfrye@dris.com
url: [79]www.lynxmotion.com

TSS is Home of the Lynxmotion Robotic Arm. It uses Scott Edwards Mini
SSC Controller.
* 5 axis (base rotate, shoulder, elbow, wrist and gripper)
* All axis' are closed loop.
* Can be completely battery powered by a 9V and 6V battery.
* Extremely easy to program and control with any serial port.
* Can utilize a PC, single board computer, PIC or even BASIC Stamp.
* Very fast, accurate and repeatable movement.
* Available in three different configurations.

"Basic kit"
Includes all hardware, structural components, a 27 page
detailed assembly manual with illustrations, and software. You
will need to provide the servos and a Mini SSC servo
controller.
Basic kit $60, additional $10 for software.
"Level 2 kit"
Includes all hardware, structural components, assembly manual,
software, 6 servos and a Mini SSC servo controller.
Level 2 kit $180
"Level 3 kit"
Completely assembled and tested robot ready to move.
$255 with software included

Please note that there are additional shipping charges. See TSS' home
page or contact TSS for more details.

"Tomy Armatron"

The Armatron was sold by Radio Shack in the US and was a popular small
plastic manipulator. A mobile version, the Mobile Armatron was also
sold. A number of articles appeared in the hobbyist press regarding
linking the Armatrons to computers. The Armatron is a clever, maybe
even brilliant, mechanical engineering feat that uses a single motor
to control all 6 degrees of motion AND the timer. The mobile version
is still being sold in Japan and is called the "GO ROBO ARM" You might
be able to pick one up at a flea market or garage sale. They have
shown up again in the Fall of 1994 in Radio Shack stores. Buy it -
they are neat, very clever, inexpensive and fun.

Articles:
* Computer Controlled Robot Arm, Jimmy Banas, Radio Electronics, pp.
49-53, and 117, May 1985. The control requires the addition of 6
DC motors, and machining of 'bearing blocks' to hold gears and
align shafts.
* Armatron: A Study in Arm Engineering, Mark Robillard, Robotics
Age, Nov/Dec 1982, Vol. 4 No. 6, pp.40-46 (cover photo too)
* Super Armatron, John J. Shiavone, Mike Dawson, and James E.
Brandeberry, Robotics Age, Jan 1984, Vol. 6, No. 1, pp. 20-28.

Myron A. Calhoun provided the following information on the Mobile
Armatron:

The four batteries are wired in series; the center is reference, so
there is +/- 2.5 volts to control the motor. Between the main body
(which holds the battery) and the control head is a color-coded
seven-wire flat cable. The BLACK wire is one side of reference; the
BROWN wire is the other side of reference, and the reference wire
color is WHITE. In the control head are two rheostats (ganged) to
control motor speeds by controlling applied voltage.

Wire
color  |  Controls    |   Details
-------+--------------+----------------------------------------------------
 BLUE  | main    UP   | BROWN  (~250 ma.)
       | arm    DOWN  | BLACK  (~200 ma.)
       |              | This motor has a spring counterbalance to assist
       |              | "up" motion.  I did not disassemble the main arm,
       |              | but suspect there is quite a lot of gearing inside.
       |              |
ORANGE | wrist   UP   | BROWN  (~200 ma.)
       |        DOWN  | BLACK  (~200 ma.)
       |              | I did disassemble this arm, and there are SEVERAL
       |              | layers of geardown involved.
       |              |
 RED   | finger CYCLE | BLACK  (~200 ma. when open, ~235 ma. closed)
       |              | The open/close cycle is caused by a cam.
       |              |
       | wrist ROTATE | BROWN  (~225-255 ma.)
       |              | A ratchet mechanism permits finger-cycling versus
       |              | wrist-rotation using just one motor.  When the
       |              | motor turns one way a ratchet locks wrist turning
       |              | but allows finger cycling, and vice versa.
       |              |
YELLOW | left  FORWARD| BROWN (~350 ma. when driven by itself)
       | drive REVERSE| BLACK (~350 ma. when driven by itself)
       | wheel        |
       |              |
GREEN  | right FORWARD| BROWN (~350 ma. when driven by itself)
       | drive REVERSE| BLACK (~350 ma. when driven by itself)
       | wheel        | When both wheels are driven in the same direction,
       |              | the total current draw is ~475 ma.  Internally, both
       |              | drive motors are actually in one unit; I suspect
       |              | there is some clutch interlock between them.

I disassembled most of the body/forearm/wrist (but NOT the main arm)
just for fun. Inside the main turret is a pedestal upon which is
mounted a small PC card which terminates all wiring. Coming up from
below are all seven wires from the flat cable plus several (thinner)
wires from the battery compartment and the motors. They connect to the
PC card IN THIS ORDER from left to right when viewing from the rear:

BLACK BROWN RED ORANGE YELLOW GREEN BLUE WHITE (common)

Going up into the arm mechanisms are three wires, RED/WHITE, ORANGE/
WHITE, and BLUE/WHITE, and associated with each is a white wire. In
general, the wiring is color-consistent; the RED-with-WHITE-stripe
wire connects to the RED terminal, the BLUE-with-WHITE-strip wire to
the BLUE terminal, all of the WHITE wires to the WHITE (common)
terminal, etc. But inside the base unit an ORANGE wire connected to
one end of the battery (opposite the BLACK wire connected to the other
end of the battery). I did NOT see a BROWN wire here as would be
expected. Myron.

"Ublige Software and Robotics Corporation"

P.O. Box 18034
Huntsville, AL, 35804-8034
net: [80]usr@delphi.com
url: [81]http://www.traveller.com/~insecta/
tel: 205.518.9422
contact: Luis Lopez

Kits and pre-assembled robot walkers (insects). USR produces
Electro-Optic components and software tools for compound eye robotics.
The catalog lists a low-cost walking system kit called Prometheus and
Sparticus on the order of $1500 (US). A number of control and I/O
modules are also available (eg. RS232 interface, data acquisition,
motor control module, motor driver etc.) Leg units are also sold
separately.

For USR's catalog, which includes a Video for Windows demo of their
robots in action and a selection of research articles, please send
check or money orderfor $3US within the United States or $7US for
outside the United States the address above.

"Zagros Robotics"

PO Box 460342
St. Louis, MO 63146-7342
tel: 314.768.1328
net: [82]zagros@Walden.MO.NET
contact: Atha Jamar Neal III

Zagros sells two robot kits. All you need to add is a CPU, and you
have a fully functional robot. Zagros offers their own HC11 based
processor board with 'C' compiler. The Mini Max has a maximum speed of
about 22.5 meters/minute. Each drive motor generates 1.1 Nm of torque.
The platform is 30cmx30cm 6mm thick industrial plastic. Zagros accepts
check, money order, COD, Discover, Visa and Mastercard.

Mini Max Robot Kit $129.95 (plus $15.00 shipping) This kit includes
the following:

* (2) 12 volt DC drive motors
* (2) 15cm drive wheels
* (1) caster wheel
* (1) base plane 30cm x 30cm
* (1) battery power supply
* (1) motor driver kit
* (1) book of project notes
* (1) solderless breadboard

MAX '96 ROBOT KIT $189.95 (plus $15.00 shipping)
* (2) 12 volt DC drive motors
* (2) 15cm drive wheels
* (2) caster wheels
* (1) base plane 41cmx41cm
* (1) battery power supply
* (1) motor driver kit
* (2) pulse encoders
* (1) book of project notes
* (1) solderless breadboard

8.5 Entertainment Robots

While not quite in the mainstream of robotics research, there are a
number of companies catering to mainstream venues using animated
figures that are remotely controlled. These are often used to
entertain people in restaurants, at shows and conferences,promotional
events and at a variety of other types of gatherings.

"The Robot Factory"

3740 Interpark Drive
Colorado Springs, CO 80907
tel: 719.447.0331
fax: 719.447.0332
net: [83]info@robotfactory.com
url: [84]http://www.robotfactory.com/

Robots for advertising, education and entertainment since 1966. The
major product categories available from The Robot Factory include
Talking signs, mobile robots, animated Musicians and customized
robots.

 

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