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Friday, December 18, 2009

Two steps forward...

I did a lot of work today, improving the robobuilder motion system and writing some custom functions to take advantage of the special features that the wCKs have to offer.

Unfortunately, my efforts were met with a minor setback when I managed to strip another gear - this time in the poor robot's knee. Unlike the first time, or the time after that, the gear which needed replacing was the first gear in the set - the one which is driven directly by the motor.

This leads me to believe that it broke simply due to regular wear and tear - not because of any specific negligence on my behalf.

Gears tend to be under more stress the further away from the motor they are, because they rotate slower, but with more torque. This is why (I assume), I didn't receive any replacement #1 gears with my kit.

Therefore my plans have been put on hold until I can get my hands on a replacement. This should serve as another important selection criteria for servos - metal gears are worth the extra money.

So today's post will not, as I had intended, consist of more awesome videos of my robot doing awesome stuff.

Instead, please enjoy a variety of other people's robot's doing other people's stuffs.

Above is an earlier version of HINA, doing demonstrations for the robo-one competition. I'm fairly sure that the bottle of water is full, which means that there is quite a lot of power in that little robot. As usual, mujaki has put a lot of effort into the custom body parts and it looks absolutely stunning.

In the not too distant future, I'd like to have a go at customising my servos - particularly given the problems I'm having with these plastic gears.

From cute to creepy.

This is phoenix, a hexapod with an amazingly lifelike gait and behaviour. It looks like a real insect, especially when it goes into attack mode!

Phoenix is able to move so fluidly due to an inverse kinematics engine (another interest of mine). This enables fine control over the body and individual limbs of the hexapod, without compromising the balance or posture of the rest of the robot.

When I can get this servo fixed, I'll upload some more videos of my own - please bear with me. If anyone knows where I can get replacement wCK gears (preferably metal) in Australia - let me know.

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