I am interested to make a simple 4ft tall animatronic figure for Halloween, and then continuously develop it further with more capabilities. It will be outside my house in the dark on Halloween night.
I am fairly new to arduino and electronics but have a mech. eng. degree and have build rc things before.
I have been doing research over the past few weeks and doing many tutorials from the Uno starter kit and others online including Bluetooth coms.
So I've sort of figured out that I need to know everything about all the components to do it right even for basic functions, and I'm very pressed for time because Halloween is in 10 days and I don't have much yet. Electronic suppliers and distributors such as Digikey have been helpful.
I am looking for some help to expedite a simple robot for Halloween if you can recommend anything to me regarding the components that would work together it would be greatly appreciated.
What I would like to do is:
Lighting: Figure is hollow plastic construction and lit from the inside by leds. I think I need about 2X 100 lm or 5w rgb leds. I want to control the brightness and color to whatever program I write. One effect I'd like is a rapid bright white strobe light.
Sound: I would like the figure to emit a variety of sounds, some very loud, depending on the control program and sensor inputs. I think it needs to be as loud as a loud alarm clock. I would like to supply a large variety of MP3 sound files to play depending on conditions. However could get by with several short clips.
Motion: I originally wanted this to be a mobile, rc controlled robot/figure, but I think that feature will have to wait due to development time and cost. So, the figure has a head, and at a minimum I'd like the head to rotate to positions determined by the control program. It's light-weight maybe 1 lb, I might have a motor for it already, I don't know the voltage it's pretty weak but has a gearbox. I could also use a medium servo I think if I could control the speed of rotation (slower). Ideally, I would have sound and motion detection and it would turn it's head to look at passersby.
Control: One feature I really want to implement is a reaction to an event, the event being when a certain object is briefly brought near or physically impacts the figure, I want the figure to react with light and sound effects and possibly motion. But I want it to react only when this particular object is near (has made contact) with the figure in any location. So I think the object has to have some small device in it that is detected by proximity, or maybe a shock sensor in the figure that detects contact. This feature is an important one.
Logistics: What I'm shooting for is the simplest way to implement as many of these features as possible before 10/30/15 and at reasonable (low) cost. Because it's my first time doing this I am really hopeful that someone may offer some guidance or recommendations for some simple I/O hardware systems I can implement easily. Then I will refine it greatly in the future, and report results!
Basically I need to select leds, power supply/control/sensors/shields/motors/speakers/amplifiers to do the things listed as quickly simply and easily as possible.
If anyone has had success implementing some similar features and capabilities and is willing to share I'd greatly appreciate it. Sorry for the short notice! I just need something that will work at a minimum now and I'll improve it later!