Step #1: Gather your Platform Parts
Open up the bag of parts for the mobile platform. You'll notice that there are no instructions included, so I will help to guide you through the build process.
Step #3: Attaching the Motors
- Find the two narrow metal pieces, and gather your motors. There is a small yellow hole on the motor, and a hole for the axle.
- Take one of the longer screws, and push it through from the outside of the metal, into the holes on the motor. The smaller washers and the smaller nuts will go with the longer screws.
- Do this for each motor.
- You will probably have extra screws or parts with the project, so don't get worried if you find extras.
Step #10: Add Batteries to Holder
Since a cover will be going over the main frame, you will want to put the batteries in before we screw on the cover. You will need five AA batteries.
Step #15: Reset button and Resistor Network.
The Reset button goes into the bottom left. The resistor network is inserted where it says RN1. Make sure the end with the dot goes into the hole marked with the X.
Step #17: 47uF Capacitors
There are two black 47uF capacitors that are included in the kit. These will be inserted into C7 and C8. Make sure you insert them with the correct polarity. The negative side is noted with a gray strip, so insert that in the hole that is not noted positive on the circuit board.
- The remaining headers
- Now take the remaining headers and place them in your Arduino, with the small ends facing upward.
- Now place the Motor Shield over the headers connected to the Arduino, and poke the short leads through the holes in the shield.
- Now solder the joints. Once these are soldered, you are ready to go. The Motor Shield can be removed, or kept on for now.
- If using the uno, note how there are some pins (headers) not placed in the arduino, this is important.
Step #22: Installing Arduino Software
Install your Arduino Software if you haven't done so. Check out the Make: How-To Tuesday tutorial to help you set up your Arduino.
Step #23: Connect Motor Power to Motor Shield
- Find the remaining lead from the toggle switch, and the black lead from the battery holder.
- Unscrew the screws on the terminal block with the 2 terminals. Now take the black lead and insert it into the GND terminal. Take the lead from the toggle switch and insert it into the M+ terminal.
- Tighten up the screws for the terminal, and your Arduino should receive power now. Hit the switch to make sure it turns on.
Step #24: Connecting the Motors to the Motor Shield
- Take the wires that are coming from your motors and insert each set of the wires into the two outer terminals (in the row of 5).
- Polarity does not matter at this point. When you get the motors running, if you discover that the wheel on a motor needs to rotate in the opposite direction just switch the wires that you inserted into the terminal.
- All right; we have reached Checkpoint #1 and now we can test to make sure your motors and Arduino are working. We'll test these in the next step.
Step #25: Testing the Motors and MotorShield
- Start by hitting the toggle switch. If the green light goes on, that means there is power to the Motor Shield, which means power to your motors!
- Now we can go ahead and test the Motor Shield. Assuming that your computer has the Arduino program installed, we can move on.
- Connect the Arduino to your computer, and upload the Motor_Test.pdf sketch found at the beginning of the project. This is just a simple loop to make sure your motors are working.
- Make sure your Arduino is not touching the metal surface of the chassis. I didn't realize this at the beginning, so my motors were just twitching randomly! So place a piece of cardboard underneath the Arduino to make sure nothing is being shorted out. You can paint the cardboard black so that it matches the chassis color.
Step #27: Install Front Carriage
- The remaining metal piece that hasn't been installed yet is the piece with the multiple narrow slits.
- On the end opposite to the toggle switch, there are two extra holes, where you can screw in the front carriage.
- I'll be putting the Arduino here, but it is your choice.
Step #28: Install Sensor Mounts
- In the bag of the screws there are three weird-looking metal pieces with a hole in each of them. I'll be using two of these to hold up the Ping sensor on the upper level of the robot.
- Begin by wrapping the metal thoroughly in electrical tape. The sensor will be pretty close to the metal, so you don't want any shorts occurring.
- I used just one screw for each piece, but since there are only 3 holes, it has to be slightly off to one side or the other.
- It may be easier to remove the upper level to screw these pieces in. It is tough to get the nuts onto the screws when the upper-level frame is attached.
Step #30: Installing the Ping Sensor (Part 2)
- Now poke the three wires through the narrow slit that is at the front of the robot. They connect to the PING sensor itself.
- Solder each wire, being careful that the GND from the shield is soldered to the GND on the sensor. The 5+ on the shield connects to the 5+ pin on the sensor, and the A0-5 on the shield connects to the SIG pin on the sensor.
- Wrap your hookup wire around each sensor lead carefully, and solder them.
Step #31: Securing the Ping Sensor
- Now you are ready to secure the Ping sensor to the sensor mounts. I wrapped the sensor mounts with electrical tape to make the Ping sensor stay in better.
- Make sure no wires or metal from the sensor is touching any other metal. If it is, just wrap the culprit in a small piece of electrical tape.
- I have provided a program that you can load onto your Arduino. It is in a file called Arduino_Robot_Code.pdf found under the "Files" section on the first page of this guide. This program makes the robot move forward until an object is located. The robot then moves backward and turns right. Then it goes forward again, repeating this process.
- Plug the Arduino into the USB port on your computer. The 9V battery plug connects to the black female connector on the Arduino.
- Compile the code, and then upload the code to the Arduino.
- Hit the switch on the back of your robot, hit the switch on the battery supply, and you have an object-avoiding Arduino-powered robot!