View Full Version : [Question(s)] Help on Robonova

01-11-2009, 08:26 PM
I have just finished building my Robonova and am trying to set the zero-point, but the servos on the right side seems all screwed up and some won't even move. For example: if I move the numbers on the thigh, the ankle moves, if I move the numbers on ankle, nothing will happen, the arm (only the right side) won't even budge whatever I try, and if I use the RoboRemocon to trigger a move, the left side will be normal but the right will be just moving however it wants. I tried everything, like triple checking the wire connectons to the controller ports and when that didn't work, switching the cables around. At this point I am thoroghly frustrated:mad: and finally asking other Robonova owners for help.

Thank You,

01-11-2009, 09:09 PM
Moved over here where it will get more appropriate attention.

01-11-2009, 09:33 PM
I know you said you checked all the wire connections...but I would suggest checking over them one more time. Especially if moving the ankle moves the thigh or what have you.

Sorry your having trouble by the way.


01-11-2009, 10:07 PM
Hi XX2747,

I would suggest that you go to Robosavvy.com and check out the Wiki there that deals with the RoboNova. There is a huge amount of info there. Towards the bottom of the Wiki there is a section on some errors in the manual. Some of these errors can cause the problem you are seeing.


Also there is some good info on Matt Bauers website. http://www.bauerindependents.com/index.html

My Robonova is a year or so old, and the controller may have a different pinout, The good folks at Robosavvy keep up on this stuff.

Below is a piece of the manual error section.

"page 42 - the manual shows the layout of an early version of the MR 3024 controller. The newer version v2.5 2511 (Dec 2006) has made a change to the servo ports Group B(S12-S17) and Group A(S18-S23). Refer to the latest PDF verison of he manual from Hitec for correct port assignments (http://www.hitecrobotics.com/info/downloads.htm (http://www.hitecrobotics.com/info/downloads.htm)). Symptoms of this change are an unusual initial stance after first build and controls in ‘Set Zero Point’ unresponsive or controlling the wrong servo. All of these symptoms relate to the right hand side of Robonova as these are the ports that have changed. The overall change has reversed all of the servo ports in Group A (18to23 in book becomes 23to18 in PDF) and Group B (12to17 in book becomes 17to12 in PDF)."

Good Luck

01-11-2009, 10:35 PM
Thanks so much DB and Gary,
I wonder why HiTec included a new version of the controller and didn't include a new manual.
I bet hundreds of owners went through this.
On the bright side, I'm glad I picked the robot with the best support community around it. These forums are so useful...

01-11-2009, 11:10 PM
I'm actually still waiting on my robonova controller thingy...3024. I ordered it, but UPS is having a ton of trouble up here in the north west because the roads are all flooded. I can't wait to get to work playing with it.

Keep us all posted about how you end up solving the problems. I may very well be checking this post for advice in a few days.


01-11-2009, 11:29 PM
I'm sorry about your shipment delay. I live in Washington and UPS didn't have any problems with me, but that was before the rain.
I actually hooked up all the wires now and am waiting for it to charge. It's a pity they made the charger so that it can't be an off-the-wall battery supply.

01-12-2009, 12:38 AM
Did GDubb's answer solve your issues with the Robo, xx?

01-12-2009, 11:08 AM
Looks like there is a broken link for the Hitec manual. If you go to http://www.robonova.com/main.php , then to download, then to page 4 of the download section it will get you there.


There is the Hitec European site.


Sorry about that..:sad:

01-12-2009, 06:33 PM
Finally after going through the manual, I go it all worked out. Still trying to set the zero-point though. At least I got him to stand on both his legs.
Anyway, just in case other people go through this, the newest PDF manual from the European website is the same as my paper one. I had to look at the slightly older version to get things right.

01-25-2009, 08:54 PM
My RoboNova's been behaving well, but I want to modify him a bit.
The problem is, though, I need customized brackets for this and I'm one of those no-experience-in-mechanic-engineering-whatsoever kind of guy; I don't have any metal-cutting tools or any tool required for custom bracket making. Maybe this is impossible, but I am looking for a way to accompolish my goal manually (since I have a very tight budget). I just thought this request could be catagorized as "Help on RoboNova", and thus posted here.

P.S.- Just to show you how much I'm clueless on this subject, I don't even know what material should be used for the brackets, or what I should use to drill holes in them, or how I should bend the metal (if that's even possible manually)

01-25-2009, 09:38 PM
Why don't you just purchase some of the premade Robonova brackets? What is it youre trying to do that requires custom ones?


Dirt cheap, you pretty much can't even build them for this cheap, nor approach the quality.

01-25-2009, 09:46 PM
I'm trying to make a bracket that will support a servo on the bot's arm, so a rather unique design would be needed.
I'm not asking for high-quality, but anything that can support a servo. (I guess it doesn't even have to be a bracket)

01-25-2009, 09:54 PM
Can you give us a better idea of what it is you want to acomplish with this servo. I may even have something on hand that will work. Before converting my RN-1 to a quad I did a lot of mods to it.


01-25-2009, 09:57 PM
Yes, "Supporting a servo" is a pretty broad definition. Double sided sticky tape will "support a servo"

01-26-2009, 01:15 AM
I was thinking of adding a servo on the outside of the top servo of the arm (I don't know what it's really called, but it's the highest servo visible) and use a ball link to connect it to a U-type bracket that will turn when the servo turns on the outside. I'm trying to use this since I don't want the extra servo to go directly under the upper one, making the robot look like a gorilla. I have a diagram, except I can't seem to upload the picture... It says that the file exceeds the limit or something...:sad: Is anyone getting what I'm saying at all?

01-26-2009, 11:32 AM
Take a look at Matt Bauers Rooks Pawn III. He did something similar to what you're talking about.

01-26-2009, 12:20 PM
Rook's Pawn III has something very similar to my idea, and he used some sweet custom brackets too. However, I want to add a ball link to the U bracket in order to somewhat maintain Robonova's shape. If I used Pawn's method by attaching the U bracket directly to the extra servo, the arms would be too far from the shoulders.
Anyway, I'm not even sure if I can make these brackets myself. Has anyone experience with custom brackets? Like making them cheap without machines?

01-26-2009, 12:39 PM
Darkback made all the brackets for Charlie without a brake, as memory serves.

01-26-2009, 12:53 PM
If it's arm rotation your after, consider adding the servo between the 2 existing ones. This will extend the arm a lot giving you the dreaded gorilla look..BUT if you do the same thing to the legs, it balances out. I did this to my RN-1 when it was a biped. It adds a balance problen though due to the added height and flex. This can all be done by modifying some standard RN-1 brackets.

Look at the Robosavvy WIKI for the RN-1, there is a piece on adding hip rotation. Yow can do the same thing with the arms. All with standard brackets. (and a drill)

I had pictures of my changes, but lost them when I formatted my HD.


01-26-2009, 01:16 PM
For my custom brackets, I use 6061 Aluminum from a scrapyard. .040 or .050 work well. The .040 can be cut with tinsnips, or hacksaw, but a bandsaw or sabersaw are better. I use a wood blade in my bandsaw, as the coarser teeth don't generate as much heat. A vise is handy for bending if you don't have a brake. But a pair of linemans pliars will work, or just clamp to a board and beat it over with a deadblow hammer.

The hole for the servo shaft on an HSR-8498 servos is about 3/8", so clamp before you drill or it will get you. A round file is handy too.

With the 6061 aluminum, make the bends a little rounded to avoid cracking.

I draw my brackets flat on a piece of removable label paper, then you have a good pattern to follow that will come off.

It's amazing what can be done without a lot of fancy tools. :happy:


01-26-2009, 01:27 PM
That's a great idea. I was thinking that I might add the same ball link method to the hips, but it would need custom brackets also. However, if looked from the front, the bot will have his normal height, since the servos would be hidden behind. I'm considering your method too, but havn't dropped mine just yet.
BTW, the diagram I was talking about... It's uploaded in my album. (again, it's a very rough sketch in Paint, not like a 3D model)

01-26-2009, 02:16 PM
Well... Why didn't you say you needed these...:veryhappy:

These are some I made for my rotation attempt.

01-26-2009, 03:20 PM
Wow - that's some beautiful work, gdubb!

01-26-2009, 05:36 PM
[blush}..Thanks Addy :o

I had to get kind of inventive with some of my brackets.. These particular ones I did by milling a hole in a block of Al and a die to push the sheet in with. A little extra bend allowance so the bends weren't too sharp.

I don't know what I am doing, so everything is an experiment.:veryhappy:

01-26-2009, 05:58 PM
So you did effectively stamp the flanges. That makes sense. I was wondering how you got those zero-clearence box bends in there!

01-26-2009, 08:56 PM
Now that's what I need...
What tools did you use for the making of it? (kind of a noob question sorry)

01-26-2009, 09:46 PM
I sent you a PM.

It looks like you will have to have a bearing or something on the bracket for the lower servo to pivot on. If so, I would think there will be something at a hobby shop that would work. Parts from a R/C car, Heli, plane... I dunno..

Good Luck

02-05-2009, 12:12 AM
While working on the rotation thing, how I should control my robot came up in my mind. I know, I should concentrate on one thing at a time, but I'm visiting Korea next week and thought maybe there would be something there. Anyway, I was thinking of a PS2 controller, since I understand that it's the easiest to deal with (am I right?) So, if I decide to do that, I would have to hack the PS2 controller's receiver and all that. I'm not much of a hardware (nor software) guy and looked for a easier way around this. They do sell a PS2 controller set with the tranceiver that can just be plugged in and ready to go in RoboNova.de, but that's European and I don't think they ship overseas. However, I found the Lynxmotion "Playstation Controller Cable" and wondered if that would work on Hitec's microcontroller.

Sorry for the long passage...

02-05-2009, 06:43 AM
This is how I did my PS2 controller for the Robonova.

More recently we have used the Logitech PS2 controller on both the Robonova and Robobuilder. The receiver is smaller than others, and we have a small PCB for the interface.


The processor has different code for the RoboNova and the Robobuilder, connecting to the ERX ETX ports on Robonova and via the IR port on the Robobuilder.

The Logitech will only work from 3.3V, so that is why the regulator is now on the board.


02-05-2009, 11:38 AM
Hey Richard..
Good to see you here. I mentioned your interface to the PS2 to XX2747 in a PM a little while ago. I have had good luck with mine. If he wants to pursue it, I could program the PIC for him if needed. I used a Gamestop brand (made by Mad Catz) wireless controller. It handeled the 5 volts OK, but the receiver is a little large. That wasn't much of as issue for me, as I have a lot more room on the quad version of the bot.

The new board looks great.


02-08-2009, 04:00 PM
Hey Jack,

Good to see you back. How's things going with the robot??


02-09-2009, 07:05 PM
I hadn't got the chance to check the forums and the robot lately but I'm planning on it.
Still havn't got any progress and since I'm going to Korea tomorrow, I don't think I'll get anything done this week. (or do I? after all, major robot companies like Hitec and Robotis are both Korean.
Back to the progress: like I said, there has been almost no progress and I don't even have an extra servo(planning on buying a HSR-5498SG though) and havn't gone to the scrapyard yet.

02-17-2009, 12:21 AM
I just came back from a robot museum and I'm dazzled. Too much robots at once! Expensive robots, I might add!
I saw the Cycloid II and III, a custom robot made out of RX-64's, and the Robonova dance team. (They had 13 of them) I noticed that they used PS2 controllers. Some sort of chip was attached onto the controller itself. I searched the web and found that MiniRobot, the company that makes RoboNova, sells them for 99,000 won.($100) It's a "RF(Zigbee)" controller and states that it gets less interference. Does this use the same RoboBASIC code as iBot's? Which is easier to work with?

02-17-2009, 10:07 AM
I thought Hitec made the Robonova?

Link to said PS2 controller?

02-17-2009, 11:40 AM
The Robobasic hasn't changed that I know of. But there will be a little bit of code for the zigbee module, just as there is for i-bots wireless setup. It's more of a question of whether you want to build it or buy it I guess.

I've had great luck with i-bots controller. I only switched to Roborealm and XBee for the noisy environment of RoboGames. But I will have the other as my number 1 backup system.


02-17-2009, 06:06 PM
Yes, you are right- in the U.S. and European regions, Hitec sells the Robonova. But, in Korea, Hitec has a partnership with MiniRobot, a Korean robotics company.( it's pretty big, actually; check out their site: http://minirobot.co.kr/, but you might need translation)
However, I'm afraid there isn't a link to the Zigbee module.(I found a PS2 Bluetooth one too at $220, but same problem) The site URL stays the same - you'll have to find it through the website.
Anyway, here's a screenshot to help you guys...
And the next one is the Bluetooth...

02-21-2009, 10:31 AM
In the confusion between Hitec and minirobots, there is also ROBOBASIC.COM, who appear to have written the software.

A new version of roboBASIC (V2.72) with significant performance increase was posted on their website last October, but has not appeared from Hitec.

There is more detail here.

02-25-2009, 08:34 PM
Thanks iBot,
I think MiniRobot supplies HiTec with the controllers, as the MR-3024 and all the MR series stand for MiniRobot.(I think, and pretty sure, since this company sells the same products in their name)
Anyway, guess I'll order the Zigbee PS2 controller. I have no experience with it, but I guess it's better than a 2.4 Ghz, in terms of interference in large crowds. They said they'll supply the code, so no struggle there.

03-03-2009, 06:09 PM
What micro servos are of good value and good torque?
I'm planning on attaching it on my Robonova
I was looking at the HS-55 or the BMS-380 MAX