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hacked tomy robot
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 15 August 2011 20:09

Evalbot I2C Nunchuk lib
Written by admin   
Wednesday, 10 August 2011 00:00

Authors: admin

Martin Hubacek took a TI Stellaris EVALBOT and interfaced it to a Nintendo Nunchuck. This lets the robot drive around using the accelerometer or the joystick. Check details and code on the link below. 

Evalbot I2C & Nunchuk lib – [via]


Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 August 2011 00:08
Nuntius: the Garden Avenger robot
Written by Dangerus Prototypes   
Wednesday, 10 August 2011 00:00

Authors: Dangerus Prototypes

garden advenger

In this video Trossen Robotics debuts their Garden Avenger Robot.

David Dorhout, the bots developer writes:

A couple of years ago I first saw one of those self contained game systems that consist of just the joystick and the AV wires that you plug into your TV. I was simply amazed at the simplicity and brilliance of the concept. You just plug it in and play.

Nuntius is based on the same basic concept of those systems except it’s a robot. The controller it a biomechanical input device that consists of a propeller proto board that measures the position of a 6 axis “mini arm” that you articulate with your hand just like you would if you were actually there. The propeller then send the data via a XBEE to the robot.

The BOM includes 2 Propeller proto boards,
1 Propeller proto board enclosure, 2 XBees, 1 Parallax Wheel Kit, 2 Parallax HB-25 Motor Controllers, Servos and Servo Brackets from Lynxmotion and a wireless camera. No link to code or schematic was provided.

Read more:

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 August 2011 00:19
Building BRAM your first Autonomous Mobile Robot using Microchip PIC Microcontroller
Written by admin   
Wednesday, 06 July 2011 00:00

Authors: admin writes:

Have you ever thought that most of our perception about the robot is based on the Hollywood movie! The famous 3CPO and R2D2 from Star Wars until the little cute garbage compacting robot named WALL-E; all of these machines are example of our dreams or should I say our quest to what we all think about the robot should be. Although the robot that we are going to build here is still far away from the technologies shown on those movies but at least it will give you an introductory to the robotics world. On this tutorial we will build BRAM which stand for Beginner’s Robot Autonomous Mobile, BRAM construction is designed to be easily built using some of the parts that you could easily found at home, this time we will use Microchip 8-Bits midrange PIC16F690 microcontroller as the BRAM’s brain.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 05 July 2011 23:38
Iced Tea Printing
Written by Administrator   
Friday, 01 July 2011 00:00

All I could hear was the old jingle which was associated with a certain company’s Iced Tea product and its marketing campaign.

We continue with our quest to experiment with a wide variety of materials for 3DP. Our previous materials were presented in:

Bone Yard

Salty Parts

Here is another result from our Advanced RP/RM (rapid prototyping/rapid manufacturing) course.  The independent research requirement  and report tends to bring forth quite amazing results from the students.   The project is undertaken  in teams of two. As an instructor, I would remind the class at every meeting that the project clock was ticking.   A team (composed of Fang Lin and Nat Mottaz) approached me in the lab with their project idea.

“We’d like to try printing in some type of food or drink mix”

“Well we know that hot chocolate works…”  “Look for drink mixes made with sugar — not diet.”

Several days later, they came back with iced tea.  We ultimately decided to go with the iced tea powder because it makes it feel like summer is near.  Even though it was the middle of February, I was already craving summer, and that had a big part in our choice.  As far as the mango flavor, it was a couple bucks cheaper than the normal flavor and everyone loves the smell of mango, so it was a win-win.

Upon looking at the nutrition label, it became very clear that sweetened ice tea is about 90% sugar by weight!!!

“Wonderful! Sugar mixtures print quite well but you’ll need to get the particle size correct”

“I remember when we first tried grinding up the powder with a coffee grinder, I was so excited that it was working that i didn’t bother to let the dust settle and I stuck my face down to look at the powder.  Remarkably, I didn’t learn, and by the time we had ground up all the powder, I had inhaled way more powder than was probably healthy.  For some reason the provided dust masks never seemed like a good idea at the time, now however….well, lets just say that I’ve had enough mango for a little while.
After grinding about half of the powder up, the coffee grinder mysteriously stopped working.  After taking it apart, we found at least a cup of iced tea powder had fallen through a little hole into the inside of the grinder.  It worked much better after we plugged the hole up with some clay.  It seems as if the coffee grinder was actually designed to grind up larger coffee beans, rather than iced tea powder.”


A quick check that their powder was ground fine enough and then onto benchtesting.   In our lab bench testing allows one to experiment with powder mix ratios AND to see how the powder takes to our binders.


After a few days of trying out additives and powder mix ratios, Fang and Nat found what appeared to be a printer testable mix.

Ice Tea  final recipe (by weight):
10 parts iced tea powder (ground, powdered, and screened)
The iced tea powder they used was Lipton Instant Tea Mix, Mango, but any flavor (or brand) should probably work well as long as it’s sugar sweetened.


In the printer, the Ice Tea mix produced printable results on the first try,   although some adjustment of saturation and layer thickness was required.


The resulting bars were strong with a good surface finish.  The upper bar has too high of saturation.   The ice tea mix required VERY low saturation (a fact that will make it useful in the future).
The last thing Fang and Nat printed was a pineapple (even though the wrong saturation settings were applied).
“We also had a good laugh when Fang went down to take a couple more pictures of the stuff we had printed and found that Ganter had broken the pineapple when he was showing people how hard it was.”


“Oops, I guess it wasn’t completely dry yet.”
While one can’t actually eat or drink the ice tea powders due to the possible chemical contamination of the ink/binder system, the results are great fun.   In the future, we must imagine the possibility of printing food on a 3DP system.

Creative Commons License
Iced Tea Powder Printing by Fang Lin, Nathanael Mottaz is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License


Last Updated on Friday, 01 July 2011 00:22
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