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Topic: Make a RC car run a whole race track pre-programmed (Read 3807 times) previous topic - next topic


Hi All,

This my first post here and venture into amazing world of Arduino.

I'm wanted control a RC car with my computer, well more program the whole track, so the car could run the whole track on its own.

My idea is:

- connecting the Arduino (or what is needed) to my computer
- that would send Radio signal 2.4 ghz to the standard car reciever.

Please tell me if it is possible, and what pieces and equipment i need to achief this.

Thanks a lot



I think that you will run into trouble like, if the car is slipping a little than it will slowly lose it's calibration.....

A better option will be to follow a line or sidelines with optical sensors, and there are to many examples out there to google
it for you.

Hope this helps you  :)


I understand, but that would be the challenge, programming the car to the limit of not slipping and if it would slip picking it up with sensors and correcting it.
Of course i would start with a real wide track, well a field  :)

Or is this impossible?


I think that it's possible but a challenge, try to figure something out that gives your code a checkpoint each time so it can calibrate
If you don't want this and don't want sensors i thing you need some sort of encoders on the wheels (expensive) and even then
i doubt if you will be able to pull it of.

But i'm more in automation so maybe someone else will tell you a different story, but from my experience i know that i always need
a calibration point or something like encoders or sensors or so. 


   If you have a slot car track, try it there first, you only have the throttle to deal with as the track will steer the car. Its a lot harder than it looks.

Duane B

Read this
then watch this



I think the main challenge is dealing with the throttling as the car turn on a steep turn it calls for analysing how much grip is there in on the wheels and as such how much lag in grip is tolerable for noting the slippage.

This can be done by using multiple optical line reader sensor's and your track needs multiple lines to note the values that where the car actually is?
"Real Men can Accomplish  Anything"

- skype : nishants5  
ਫ਼ਤੇਹ ਕਰੁਂ!


Thanks all for the suggestions.

But still didn't got answer to my question ;-)

What equempent do i need  (i'm newbie do not got anything) to transmit via de computer to a existing reciever in the RC car.

I do not want a arduino in the car, i just want to use arduino in the RC transmitter.

Thanks a lot


On a perfectly clean gym floor at low speed you still won't make a circuit and come back exactly where you started without sensors to find the spot. But you can get close. Then every succeeding loop will be more and more off. BTW, please don't do that with a lawnmower!

You say 'newbie and hasn't got anything' so my guess is; you didn't run any examples, not even blink.
Are you new to the code, xcraft? What you need to buy may be the far smaller part of what you will need to put in.

Nick Gammon on multitasking Arduinos:
1) http://gammon.com.au/blink
2) http://gammon.com.au/serial
3) http://gammon.com.au/interrupts




2 second search  :) (didn´t read it)


I do not want a arduino in the car, i just want to use arduino in the RC transmitter.

You have to put an Arduino in the car as you put the query i understood what that car would be facing , There's a lot to it as i have experienced with custom Tamiya modules in past, there are RC card ready made from the market that you have to hack and attach sensor's and which also controls the motor's so in a nutshell the original uC (MCU) had to be extracted and in place of it arduino has to be placed which controls the h-bridge's etc.

And, there are professional RC drifting kit's out there i suppose and guide not to use those as they are pretty rugged and costly + can cause injury to you so just get a RC toy for this, BUT THEN WHAT i would suggest is to make a line follower robot as a beginner and then in future you pick this up as this is going to be very much similar to the line follower robo and then you will understand what im saying and may be you yourself would be able to devise a nice pathway to achieve this.
"Real Men can Accomplish  Anything"

- skype : nishants5  
ਫ਼ਤੇਹ ਕਰੁਂ!


I do not want a arduino in the car, i just want to use arduino in the RC transmitter.

If you are hoping to do this without any feedback about where the car is, what you're trying to create is effectively a DIY version of Bigtrak. Perhaps you would be better off simply buying one. If you do go ahead with the DIY version then the most sensible design is to put the Arduino in the car and make it autonomous (the Arduino controls the servos and motors directly) with no radio involved at all.

If you really want to have the Arduino control the servos and motors via the original radio link then you need to understand what type of radio you have got and either replace the joystick pots with digital pots or build your own Arduino-controlled radio transmitter. Neither of these are things that I'd expect a novice to do successfully.

How much time and money did you expect to spend on this? Do you have any practical electrical/electronic/programming skills?
I only provide help via the forum - please do not contact me for private consultancy.


Easiest approach to rc from arduino to car might be to get a cheap car and take apart the transmitter box to hook the arduino in. I did this with an rc plane and was able to control it easily. I'm sure a car would be too.

I was actually trying to fly the plane on a programmed path with feedback via a webcam watching for it - very little luck with that.


Thanks guys for all feedback.

I already got the car, maybe it is little bit to brutal to let run by itself ;-) cabable of running 65mph 


If i kept the remote actief, so i could intervene and overwrite the arduino


MAN,,,,, just saw the VID.. that NOT JUST an RC car that;s an "INNOVATIVE MACHINE" ,Given you are New! you are more likely to have it jump over some poor guys Nuts and become Certified NutCracker!
"Real Men can Accomplish  Anything"

- skype : nishants5  
ਫ਼ਤੇਹ ਕਰੁਂ!


To guide the car, there has to be some kind of a check or positioning system in place to know where the car is in relationship to the track (and maybe other cars) and to tell it where to go.

You could make a program that tells an RC car when and how far to turn and how fast to go for how long, but unless you have some kind of positioning system that knows where the car is in relationship to the track, it won't work for a real track. This is because it is impossible to know exactly how the track and car will interact in every possible way ahead of time. Even if you did know that (ignoring for the moment that that is technically impossible), the Arduino programming and your car's controls wouldn't have a high enough resolution to follow the course exactly anyway.

If you just want the car to do a bunch of programmed sequential maneuvers in a flat open field, that is doable.

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