View Full Version : [Project] A Unique "Tin Man" college battle bot submission. A small step in history at SPC Spring 2014 competition

Meccano Jay
05-05-2014, 10:42 PM
Hello everyone. Sorry for the long absence, I hope to make up for it with my most recent project. Nicknamed J.A.N "Jason's Autonomous Nerd" by my professor. Sadly due to time restriction the actual autonomy was left on the development table.

Public announcement: http://lubbockonline.com/education/2014-04-09/south-plains-college-host-tin-man-robotic-competition#.U2cb2ygj8no

Goals: 1.Take the same parts box everyone else was given and bring a totally different concept to the arena. 2. Build a bot that would inspire future creativity.

Parts box consisted of two 18Vdc drills, one 18Vdc power saw, two 12" nails, one 24" x 24" sheet of 1/4" plywood, one 36" 2 x 4, one 24" length of 3/8" solid rod, one 24" length of 1/4 threaded rod, four 10' 1/2 in pvc pipe and fittings, eight light switches six of which were DPST with the other two being SPST, one ball pein hammer 6oz, 24" length of chain. one Futaba 7 ch radio with servos.

Armed With my box of parts and my challenge, I began by mocking up a foot/leg combination.

A shot for size reference and fun. No the base will not sit on top like it is shown.

Mocking up the drill motors. This bot drew a crowd more than once during construction.

Now lets add the two 12" nails and the solid shaft, carve some wood and mock mount the legs. sorry not alot of time for in between pics. The disks are 5" circles cut from plywood scraps from others bots. (Our team presented with 3 battle bots) Initially the bolt attaching the leg to the disk was 2" from center, this was later changed to 1 & 1/4". 1 & 1/2 might have been a better compromise. The two nails were welded to some scrap bits of angle iron. Later the shaft will be welded to the nails.
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Welding done on the shaft and nails with 3" discs added to provide a guide for the 2 x 4 leg grooves. also improving the feet to allow for better weight distribution. The motor mounts were constructed by using a whole saw and a square cut of 2 x 4. The hole was cut in the center of 2 blocks and the blocks were then cut in half. U bolts were then used to secure to motors to the crude brackets. It was a fast thrown together idea that wasn't supposed to go beyond mockup but stayed permanently. The feet are secuted to the 2 x 4 pieces via 3/4" C brackets from the hardware store. .75 cents.
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Taking shape and coming together. He finally stands and gets a first wave of electronics. You can aslo see in the third picture the large hose clamps used to help secure the motors to the improperly designed mounts. The light switch is a SPST that will be used as a primary kill switch disabling the 12V battery.
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The speed controls I chose were one way for the broadest spectrum of control possible. The downfall was building a mechanical revers switch. Technically there are two due to the independent motor control, allowing for forward, revers, left and right actuation. The switches are DPST and I used four of them for the reverse switch. A single servo was able to perform the reversing task with ease. The linkages are all custom bent coat hanger :p
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Cut off the excess plywood base, add a foam board constructed, trash can inspired, PVC supported body. Oh and dont forget to pait the thing bright Green! haha, as I said for fun!
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The day of competition my phone decided to stop functioning, charging, so I have no day of photos from the contest. When the videos make it to You Tube, i will post them. I did make it back by the arena, where he is now on display to snap a quick pic. He got his shades broken, but they don't call them Battle Bots for nothing.

I hope you enjoyed my speed through of my first walking battle bot, built with the same hardware used for all the rollers out there. I did not enter him into competition to win, rather to show innovation with hopes of changing the future development of the robots in the sport.

Meccano Jay
05-05-2014, 10:59 PM
Thanks to Nick, Alex, Sal and to Mr. Smith and his welding class for the assistance on the bot! Couldn't have done this without them!