Edit: changed the title
from "Robot arm..." to "Arduino project..." since that might limit thinking. Yes that's what we'll use it for, but its purpose is much wider in general.
My daughter and I are keen to build the uFactory robot arm
which uses 3x standard servos and 1x micro.
She's just starting final year at high school and will almost certainly be following an engineering degree course after that: mech, elec, mechatronics, details tbd. I'm thinking that a decent robot arm will stand her in good stead for a few years. With a decent mechanical arm, it's realatively easy to change end-effectors, and of course the real thing is to be able to change the code at will, as of course one can do in an Arduino or similar.
So my thinking is to build a decent, long-lasting but well thought out control panel for this thing, so that it's easy to get at the wiring for sensors, motors, effectors and the like. Here's my current thinking and I'd really appreciate any thoughts. Early days yet, so no idea is too outlandish....Arduino....
- Well I have a Uno, thinking to use that and leave space for a Mega- pins, memory...
- Or go for a Mega upfront?
- Or something else?
- Shields?... not anticipating anything, servos from digital pins. But make it accessible, maybe Ethernet for browser control
is paramount. I'm thinking the following mains-based supplies
Arduino pin accessibility
- 6VDC at say 5A for the servos
- 7-9VDC for Arduino barrel
- 5VDC for miscellaneous sensors and I guess this could come off the Arduino. Maybe even go for a big 5VDC supply and run servos off there too, since most are rated 4.8 to 6
is important, since this is a test-bed and re-configuration will be needed. So:
- Dedicate 4 digital pins to servo control, out to pins that fit those sockets on the end of servo wires
- Dedicate 4 analog pins to 2x 2-axis joysticks, brought out to similar socket thingy
- Dedicate 2 digital pins to joystick buttons, to sockets along with analog
- Bring all other Arduino I/O to screw terminals
- Bring out 2x grounds to terminals or a bus or something. I've read here that signal and power grounds ought to be kept separate
- 2x 2 axis joysticks with 1x button each, maybe mount these on a pendant kind of thing like a game controller
- A bunch of switches, momentary push, toggle, whatever. One side grounded, other side with fly-lead to go wherever.
- Banks of LEDs, resistor built in for 5V, cathode grounded and anode fly-lead
- A normal solderless breadboard with power
- All neatly built into a decent box, perhaps a sloping top thing
- Mains leads safely out through grommets
- PC fan built in maybe to force some air
EDIT... added LCD?
- Add a 16x2 for general use? What's the best, connector wise?- I2C?
- Or go for a GLCD or TFT?
EDIT... added Keypad
So guys and gals I'm open to ideas. If anyone has built such a thing I'm keen to hear.
Have a good one....