Lawnmower robot

Hello, I am in the process of building a robotic lawnmower. I know its been done before but I plan to make a better unit utilizing GPS to navigate the bot. I am only getting parts together right now, I have a Arrow storm chair with invacare controller, a 6 channel remote control digital radio control, a laptop, not bothered with the mower as I figure thats the easy part. I need to know how to interface my radio with the chair controller? from what I have been reading I thing I need a Arduino, question is what unit? keep in mind I also want to use gps, Can anyone help me with some advice, links to other projects like this as I am in the dark.

any advice much apriciated.

thank you

Jay

:-/

You will need to provide info or links to the chair and its controller. Below is some recent activity on similar projects. You may want to search the forum for more.

http://www.arduino.cc/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1288571425 http://www.arduino.cc/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1291388394 http://www.arduino.cc/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1291879474

Ok thanks for the links, very helpful, I would like to get all the parts together, what Arduino board should I order?

COULD SOMEONE TELL ME HOW TO POST PICTURES?

Just go to http://imageshack.us/ and upload your pic, and copy the forum code.. That's the way I do it ;)

COULD SOMEONE TELL ME HOW TO POST PICTURES?

You can't post pictures to the forum. You have to store them on a server somewhere and then link to them.

Ok thanks guys, signing up now, I guess this will be my build page to show the progress.

I am building a frame right now, I will explain things as I post pics but basicly its going to be a RC lawnmower and snowblower machine.

I am confident with everything BUT the electronics and programing so I am hoping I can find some help here with all that.

I will be ordering a arduino once I know exactly what board I need.

stay tuned for pics

8-)

I am building a frame right now, I will explain things as I post pics but basicly its going to be a RC lawnmower and snowblower machine.

Well, if you actually expect it to mow/blow to any realistic extent, you probably best start with a manufactured mower/blower (check your local Craig's list for used equipment) and develop what is needed to remotely operate it. I've not seen many scratch built mower projects that actually were capable of doing useful mowing.

what makes you think I dont have all the parts already? I am doing this in a few phases, first the main head unit machine to move and power, mower will be an attachment on the front on the unit. If I do a blower, it too will be an attachment but this is last on the list.

And I have seen a few well built rc mowers on youtube, some are dinky and some appear to work quit well.

I dont think my machine will outperform industrial equipment but it will be a blast to built and operate.

http://img190.imageshack.us/img190/4094/dsc0203y.jpg http://img148.imageshack.us/img148/2721/dsc0201u.jpg http://img193.imageshack.us/img193/127/dsc0221m.jpg http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/5497/dsc0238o.jpg http://img510.imageshack.us/img510/1959/dsc0251u.jpg http://img205.imageshack.us/img205/3677/dsc0270ym.jpg http://img6.imageshack.us/img6/6766/dsc0276yn.jpg http://img716.imageshack.us/img716/2382/dsc0280q.jpg http://img404.imageshack.us/img404/6000/dsc0281m.jpg http://img254.imageshack.us/img254/4581/dsc0285q.jpg

Hi Guys, so I will need to hook up the motors to some sort of controller. I have been looking at Dimension engineering web site and they sell controllers that make it easy to hook up a RC radio and receiver to wheelchair motors. I am wondering if I should order one of these or should I simply use an Arduino board with relays? I guess allot depends on my motors, here is a pic of the plug on my motors. I want to control the robot by RC radio but I also want it to eventually be able to mow the lawn on its own so I need to plan ahead.

any advice?

:-/

here is pic of the motor conection

http://img703.imageshack.us/i/dsc

Invacare's GB motors

Has anyone used these before?

Hi Guys, so I will need to hook up the motors to some sort of controller. I have been looking at Dimension engineering web site and they sell controllers that make it easy to hook up a RC radio and receiver to wheelchair motors. I am wondering if I should order one of these or should I simply use an Arduino board with relays? I guess allot depends on my motors, here is a pic of the plug on my motors. I want to control the robot by RC radio but I also want it to eventually be able to mow the lawn on its own so I need to plan ahead.

Maybe you should contact Dimension Engineering and ask them?

I would -not- use relay control with these motors, as usually they use some form of PWM control for speed (when used on a wheelchair), and some of those motors can move a chair quite fast; waaay faster than a slow walking speed (like you would use when mowing/blowing snow). Heck, the other day, I saw a guy pop a wheelie in the crosswalk as he was taking off (I thought he was going to fall over backwards, but his wheelie-bar wheels on the back saved the day!)...

Ultimately, you are definitely going to want a pre-built controller for these motors; I haven't looked at all of your pics, but I am guessing they are 24 VDC motors, and pull quite a bit of amps (from a dead stop or stalled). Try to get in contact with Invacare, and see what (if anything) they can tell you.

Also, if you look a bit online, you will find companies that repair these chairs and/or sell parts - try contacting them. Finally, contact Dimension Engineering and/or others that sell large controllers for these kinds of motors. You need to first find out how much current these motors pull in running vs. stalled conditions; if you are unable to figure that out, get the biggest controller available for a powerchair (or try to hack the one that came with the chair if it is still attached).

You may want to get a lawnmower like below (I've got one and it is pretty tough), remove the push handle and wheels, and mount it in your frame (you could easily later put it back together for real grass cuttung). Put the drive wheels on the rear and swival wheels on the front like the big zero turn mowers. Bottom is an H-bridge kit that might be of interest.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Weed-Eater-22-500-Series-Side-Discharge-Mulching-Push-Mower-Model-961140015-Not-for-Sale-in-California/10854261

http://secure.oatleyelectronics.com//product_info.php?products_id=206&osCsid=30093449b694ae247d94c2bcce5d0560

I do have the original controler and what looks like a sealed control box that connects everything, I am quite sure I could wire in a receiver to this controller. As far as speed goes, i was thinking I could simply run the motors at low speeds, OR do a 2 or 3 to 1 gear reduction for both motors but this complicated things. And I might want to be able to travel at higher speeds at certain times. Keep in mind I am building a robot that will have mower as an attachemnt, in other words it may be used for other things like patrolling the yard or my kids rc toy or a wheel barrel.

As for the mower, I plan to go electric with about a 45 inch cutting width.

Talking whipper sniper times 3 all in a detachable deck.

The blower too, about a 20 inch electric snow through unit modified to attach to the bot.

The bot is going to be electric/gas hybrid with batteries and a small generator. I figure it will be efficient and easy to turn on/off all the electric gadgets.