View Full Version : Suggestion on this diagram

10-30-2009, 06:12 AM
How does this diagram of my electronic connections look:

I forgot to mention the lines are wired connections and the arrow in between WA and PC means a wireless connection.

My main board is the PhidgetSBC. It has the motor controller (Phidgets Advanced Servo 8-Motor) that controls 5 motors: 4 First CIM Motors for drive and a Hitec servo for panning the web cam. 2 Batteries are necessary (no specific one chosen yet) one for the motor controller and one for the main board. The main board connects to the computer through its wireless adapter. The bot will run a program I loaded onto the flash drive. The program will receive analog inputs from the controller board's (Phidgets TextLCD with 8/8/8 Interface Kit) 3 sensors the Slider (speed adjustment), rotation sensor (web cam panning), and the Joy stick(movement) and send info to the LCD screen. The computer will be running another program to receive the web camera's feed via the wireless connection.

Whoo, that was alot to type. Any way what do you think about my diagram?
Also it's nice to meet all of you I'm new to robotics and this forum.

10-30-2009, 07:47 AM
Just a few clarifying questions...

What are you trying to do?

In your diagram you have a "MC" connected directly to your first CIM motors. Your going to need an electronic speed controller of some sort between those two things.

Also, do you want to be able to drive 1 of the four wheels and not the other three?

Maybe including a drawing of the robot would help.

Ok...if you are using a PC as the controller...then why do you need an LCD? The monitor on the computer could display all of the information you need.

I hope this helps.


10-30-2009, 01:03 PM
Isn't a "motor controller" an "electronic motor controller" aka an "electronic speed controller", DB?

Not all PC's have monitors built into them, give or take a few hundred billion...

@Accel: You have an LCD that has a joystick input? What does it do with it? [I was just advised the OP was probably referring to the Phidgets 8/8/8 w/4x20 LCD. Didn't know that existed, and that answers both DB's question and mine...]

10-30-2009, 01:35 PM
My mistake I thought the MC refered to the phidget 8 servo controller listed in the paragraph below the diagram.

Also...good point on the computer monitor bit...


10-30-2009, 01:38 PM
Actually - I think you're probably right, DB. He does have it plugged into a servo controller, which isn't a motor controller. I just answered a question for him last night about the Sabertooth 2x5 and how to plug it into the SBC - so crazy me - I was just expecting he'd use that...

10-30-2009, 03:22 PM
I felt the Sabertooth 2x5 didn't need to be added to the diagram(I will use it in the project as it is my only option, thanks again for the help with that). I was only adding the main components, but if you want me to I'll update the diagram.

The one best feature about the PhidgetSBC is that it can use Phidget devices that are any were on your network. Ok so, the robot connects to my router via the PhidgetSBC. My computer that will have the LCD and 3 sensors connected to it is on the same network. The PhidgetSBC can then utilize the LCD screen and the sensors as though they were connected to the board itself.

The LCD is to display info that will come from my robot. The robot will be programmed to receive the values of the 3 sensors (joystick,movement;rotation sensor,camera panning;slider,speed control) and use those to control the bot. So essentially I'm using Phidgets to control a PhidgetSBC based bot via the wireless internet capabilities of the board).

The ultimate reason for not using my computer as the controller is to 1) provide a better wireless programming experience and 2) to take load off of my computer. The computer will be displaying live video feed from the Web cam which I'm positive will pull a big load. My laptop has a CPU issue: If the load gets to high for about 5 min, it will shut down.

Edit: diagram updated; first post

10-31-2009, 07:32 PM
Thats pretty cool about the phidget SBC...I didn't know that it could work with phidgets on other computers over a wireless network without some sort of software bridge...

Do you have a sketch as to what the robot will look like? or be able to do? Seams like that would be cool.


11-02-2009, 12:21 AM
Not as of yet. I'm working on the sketches in my free time. As for the features: it can be switched between two modes autonomous and remote controlled. Both modes will feed a live signal to my computer. The sensors for autonomous mode are still being planned (I know a short range IR sensor will be used for obstacle avoidance). Any suggestions: sensors, features etc.?

Also if you want to read about the PhidgetSBC features here's the product's page (http://www.trossenrobotics.com/p/phidgetSBC.aspx).

12-07-2009, 04:50 PM
What sort of voltages do you need for the motors? Could you just run it all on 12v?

I suggest Lithium Polymer batteries (LiPo). You can get decent ones cheap online http://hobbyking.com/hobbycity/store/uh_index.asp