Back in 2012, I designed and 3D printed a desktop modular coil gun. I made a video of the build at the time and published it on YouTube, so I could share it with friends. The coil gun ended up on my shelf and I moved on to the next project. Looking back, I see that this particular video has gotten quite a few views since then. I have received a few requests for design details since then, many of which I haven’t responded to yet (I guess 9 years latency is pushing it a bit, but hey, I’ve been busy!
I love watching robot competitions. It doesn’t matter if it is sumo robots, line followers, boxing bipeds or the more familiar Robot Wars / BattleBot combat tournaments. I still remember being blown away by the robots in the first episodes of BBC Robot Wars when it aired back in the late nineties. It’s incredibly fun to watch these proxy battles of the minds, but I imagine that it would be even more fun to participate, especially in the heavyweight classes.
“The Automaton” is my take on how to do a low budget robot controller. Tech specs 6 - 45V input voltage range. Support for up to 32 servos with a maximum total current draw of 6A at 5V. 24Hz to 1526Hz PWM controller with 12 bit resolution. 240MHz MCU with WiFi and Bluetooth. 9DOF sensor fusion IMU that outputs absolute orientation angle at 100Hz. FTDI programming header. Expansion header with 14 available GPIO pins.
During a family trip to Japan last easter, I was fortunate enough to have a couple of hours to myself in the tech mecca of Tokyo, namely the Akihabara district. My two hour “geek pilgrimage” involved plans for visiting four of the more iconic shops in Akihabara. These were Mak Japan, G-Front, Tsukomo Robot Kingdom and Vstone Robot Center. After having spent quite some time looking at maps and web sites, I was finally able to locate the entrance of the MAK Japan shop.
Inspired by the last local robot tournamet at Omega, the Norwegian initiative Lær Kidsa Koding and a few discussions at my local hackerspace (Hackhem) I decided to revisit the BBC Micro:bit platform to see if it would be suitable as a mini sumo controller. The idea was that it would be really cool to attempt a design of an entry level mini sumo platform, that used commonly available parts, didn’t cost an arm and a leg, was easy to build and easy to program.