New in the Maker Shed: Robotic arm kit


With this award-winning Robotic arm kit, you can control the gripper, wrist, elbow, base rotation and motion, all from the tethered remote. The robotic arm has a vertical reach of 15″, horizontal reach of 12.6″, and lifting capacity of 100g. Features include a searchlight on the gripper and an audible indicator on all 5 gearboxes to prevent any potential injury or gear breakage during operation. Who is going to be the first to hack this with an Arduino?

16 thoughts on “New in the Maker Shed: Robotic arm kit

  1. Chek says:

    I figure they’re probably normal brushed DC motors, but the plastic housing seems really handy for any setup. Switch it out with some stepper motors, put some sensor to determine grip pressure, maybe mount it on some rails… You could have a very cool, very functional arm pretty easily.

    I think I need to raid the piggy bank for one of these.

    1. LHimesJr says:

      I have built a custom controller based on the PIC16F887. The controller drives the five axises and light of the OWI 535. As well as outputs to control four drive motors such as the Tamiya 70167. There is a serial port on the custom controller for sensor or other control inputs. The INA126PA Instrumentation amplifier is being used to amplify the voltage drop across a 0.03 ohm current sense resistor. There is one current sense resistor in series with each motor. That allows the commutator / brush interruptions to be monitored as well as the current draw of the motor to be monitored. The current interruptions can be counted similarly to encoder pulses from other DC / AC motors equipped with them. That same voltage drop indicates the motor normal or over current draw. Allowing the microcontroller to stop the axis which is stalled for some reason. I have just received the circuit board (which I drafted) and the components for the current monitoring. It appears that one pulse from the commutator will equal 0.015 degrees of movement noticed at the robot axis. Due to the gear box and its ratio.

  2. Marc de Vinck says:

    I was thinking of using the motors, and just interfacing the remote.

    1. Nate says:

      I thought the same. 5 analog controls (or so they appear), and 6 PWM outputs on the Ardy…sounds like it might be a quick and easy hack.

  3. Jan-Jaap Schuurman says:

    This robotic arm also has an USB interface that is just released. I have one but there is no feedback to to the computer on wich you can program and move the robotic arm. One problem of the software is that it doesn’t knows where it is, so if you make it turn the opposite direction of wich you where moving, it loses some of the position because of the gears. So an other, perhaps an arduino interface would be a great idea in stead of the original computer program and USB interface.

  4. Zach says:

    One neat hack would be to replace the command token (control box) with a waldo. Though with no positional feedback, this could be a challenge. If you replace the standard DC motors with steppers, though, and arrange some contacts (or maybe bend sensors) to signal certain positions, I could see it being very workable.

  5. arnoldlawrence says:

    Who is going to be the first to hack this? [URL=””]arnold[/URL]

  6. Jimi Rienks says:

    It is not Arduino but I hacked this robot View video here:

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