servo control – activate!

finally – an R2 success!

yesterday I finally got up the nerve to redo my wiring with my screwshield that
Randy recommended about a year ago.

screwshield parts by kimncris, on Flickr

assemble by kimncris, on Flickr

I hard wired in this little jumper circuit so that I could add or take away the 10k resistor – and could switch it between 5v and ground – connected to the data pin #12

my current r2 requires the 10k resistor bridged across the 5v and data pins

there’s the jumper in place

jumper by kimncris, on Flickr

also to allow for 3v to my amp – or for other experimentation I added another 3v power terminal

added 3v power socket by kimncris, on Flickr

the wingshield is wider than my current board, which caused it to bump into the power block. luckily it has 3 screw holes and I just moved it over a little.

had to move power block by kimncris, on Flickr

I screwed in my pin connectors for the ps2 controller cable

looking better by kimncris, on Flickr

and the signal wire for my amp

its looking much cleaner now

less of a rats nest by kimncris, on Flickr

overview by kimncris, on Flickr

here is the servo shield

servoshield by kimncris, on Flickr

you can see the three boards stacked up here

stacked up shields by kimncris, on Flickr

I don’t know if I would recommend these right angle headers that I bought though- even though they make the wires lay down nice and flat – the bottom row of pins is really short! It seems like that makes it harder to connect – and of course the bottom pin is the important one. I had them going the other way at first, but decided I wanted the pin headers with sockets on there to give me easy access to the arduino under it, so I turned most of them around… anyway – it does work – it is just not as secure as I would like.

here is a top down view – you can see how close the boards are to the outside radius of R2. the door touches the servo board. I will have to adjust something a little. but this is why I put in the right angle pins.

sticks out a little too far by kimncris, on Flickr

but miracle of miracles – everything works!

The one strange thing is that I had to remove my jumper to the pull up resistor. It did not work with the jumper in place. I don’t know why! But at least it works without the jumper.

Some sample code from adafruit installed into the padawan code, and now I can control my holo light with no interference from the feet motors!!!

working on servo 15 by kimncris, on Flickr

the code is really easy to use – there are only a couple of commands to insert into the padawan code. most of the sample code is related to debugging serial print commands and configuration options.

here is the section that moves my holo when the left arrow is pushed

   domeData.hpx = 30; domeData.dsp = 100; ET.sendData();
 pwm.setPWM(hpservonum, 0, SERVOMIN);  //code for servo board (servonum, pulsestart, pulseend)


Categories: adafruit, arduino, electronics, Holoprojector, servo | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on servo control – activate!

Holo projector control

adventuring off into lands I know nothing about, today I tried to make my front HP servo work.

DSC08559 by kimncris, on Flickr

After reading through DanF’s code I wired up my servo on analog pin 2

I had to attach some pin headers to my arduino pro mini to help with the connections

DSC08561 by kimncris, on Flickr

I had to change this code as well since dan uses pin 4 and 5

DSC08564 by kimncris, on Flickr

When I hooked up the servo it did this – the big freakout is during the startup sequence, then the morse code, telex sounding pattern is during the main light pattern loop.

when I had trouble making that work, I tried using pins 10-13

DSC08565 by kimncris, on Flickr

DSC08570 by kimncris, on Flickr

DSC08571 by kimncris, on Flickr

but it pretty much did the same thing on the other pins. So I got out another arduino and when I ran a sample code on that standalone arduino the servo worked perfectly

this is the simple code to make that work

DSC08573 by kimncris, on Flickr

then to make matters worse – my rear logic display went on the fritz

DSC08574 by kimncris, on Flickr

interestingly they work at first – then go out

I tried rearranging and swapping the LED driver chips but not nothing worked. Curiously when I swapped the code for the Teeces code all of the LEDS (minus that one column that went out) worked again. But switching back to my custom code, the giant middle gap showed up again. I finally fixed this by lowering the brightness of the RLD. I had tried to make it brighter with a value of “10” but obviously that caused problems.

anyway since the uno worked better than my dome arduino, I tried hooking up to the body arduino which is also an uno. It worked a little better so I went with that one instead. but as you can see there is still a little vibration once in a while

when I got the servo working on the body arduino I mounted it to the white ring and tried using a spring for the connector to the holo projector, but unfortunately the spring was a little too light and did not work every time.

DSC08577 by kimncris, on Flickr

so I replaced the spring with a paper clip

DSC08579 by kimncris, on Flickr

I had another frustrating hour or so trying to get this to work, only to realize I had made an error in one line of my code, but then finally I made something happen.

as you can hear, there is still a chatter problem, and the chatter gets worse when I turn on the feet motors. I am guessing this is crosstalk with my serial motor control? It would be nice to figure it out so R2 isn’t quite so clickety sounding

Categories: arduino, electronics, logics, motors, remote control, RLD, servo, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Back in Business

after much procrastination, hemming, hawwing, a trip to europe, and indecision, R2 is finally back in working order.

first I removed the dome ring because it was just in the way and extra weight.

hopefully it will run a little better now, although I noticed some black dust inside, which means my wheel tire is slowly rubbing away.

then with some long lag bolts, I was able to secure the leg in place to prevent rotation around the gas pipe. This way seems to be pretty strong and at least I did not have to remove the whole leg to get him going again.

now the question is to Dragon Con or not. We are staying in the Ritz unfortunately which means trekking some unknown distance to the con hotel at least once. On the other hand, I have not had many chances to take my R2 out with other builders yet which would be fun.

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Brown Dirt

R2s leg is still not fixed so I spent some time today adding the brown dirt I didn’t have time to do a few weeks ago

He looks godaweful dirty in person, it barely shows in photos.

I have made a few adjustments after seeing the photos, but you maybe get the idea

brown dirt 2 by kimncris, on Flickr

brown dirt 3 by kimncris, on Flickr

brown dirt 4 by kimncris, on Flickr

brown dirt 5 by kimncris, on Flickr


Categories: Paint | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Minor Setback

Free Comic Book day yesterday – R2 visited a local comic book store

Free comic book day. by kimncris, on Flickr

but then this happened

Ack! by kimncris, on Flickr

Not good by kimncris, on Flickr

something seems to have happened allowing the gas pipe to unscrew. Or at least I hope that is what happened. Hopefully I can fix this without a complete disassembly, but for now this means R2 is out of commission.

Luckily I was able to drive him VERY slowly out of the public eye, but it was very stop and go, fix the bad leg every few meters.

It looks like I will need to add some bolts to that leg to prevent unscrewing. My pins which I thought were very beefy, did not cut it.

Categories: events, legs | Leave a comment

dirty robot

been working on dirt the last couple of weekends. I hated to do this because he looked so sharp all shiny and white, but it had to be done.

here is a goodbye pic

getting ready to weather by kimncris, on Flickr

I also repaired my front ankle locks which broke last event.

clean foot new locks by kimncris, on Flickr

getting started

clean by kimncris, on Flickr

pretty much it is get it dirty, wipe it off

in process by kimncris, on Flickr

after by kimncris, on Flickr

here it is after “astro dirt”

front done by kimncris, on Flickr

back done 2 by kimncris, on Flickr

and in less light

front done 2 by kimncris, on Flickr

back done by kimncris, on Flickr

3/4 view by kimncris, on Flickr

I am ok with how it is looking so far, but when I get some more time, I’d like to add some brown tatooine dirt to him as well.

It really killed me to dirty up my shiny metal pieces, so I went easy on them, but it is getting there….

also my servos came. so now hopefully I can start experimenting with Holo eye movement and utility arms.

servos arrived by kimncris, on Flickr


Categories: body, electronics, Paint, servos | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Allen Americans Hockey Night

tonight the last of my pre-committed events, the Allen Americans hockey game.

allen americans 3 by kimncris, on Flickr

r2 cheered the 501st guys on from the safety of the edge of the rink

at the ice edge by kimncris, on Flickr

and was jealous of the bigger robots who got to go skating

zamboni 1 by kimncris, on Flickr

and then went back to hanging with the kids

allen americans 10 by kimncris, on Flickr

allen americans 12 by kimncris, on Flickr

allen americans 16 by kimncris, on Flickr

allen americans 18 by kimncris, on Flickr

allen americans 19 by kimncris, on Flickr

allen americans 21 by kimncris, on Flickr

here is a cell phone pic of his look just before going out

Restrained by kimncris, on Flickr

R2 was being really pesky tonight. The controller flat out stopped working for one – and I luckily had a backup controller and dongle. That worked once I got him back to the changing room and was able to take him out again. Also at one point he just wanted to take off in reverse. This only happens at start up – so I was standing behind him as I always do when I start up. Still – scary. In the end – even though someone kicked the back door and knocked a panel off, I was able to repair him and get him back going under pressure which was good. Successful event


Categories: events | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

restraining bolt

wanted to get busy again – so I made myself a restraining bolt

the remains of my old cryocooler became the start of a new bolt

start of bolt = cryocooler cutoff piece by kimncris, on Flickr

but it was too short so I had to make it in two parts

the first part is the back larger bit

my knurling tool is way to small to do a 2″ part, so I had to improvise. They are not the best knurl ever – but at least it has a texture

ready to cut off by kimncris, on Flickr

then I made a recess to receive the front half

cleaning up face by kimncris, on Flickr

part 1 done by kimncris, on Flickr

I’d say that is looking good

that looks pretty good by kimncris, on Flickr

I made a mating nub on the second half and turned the outside diameter

mating nubs by kimncris, on Flickr

then I cut that off and flipped it around. my nub was a little too short to use to chuck – so again – improvise

cutoff and flip by kimncris, on Flickr

cut notch by kimncris, on Flickr

I’m not really tooled up to do these tight grooves either, so I just roughed them in to look about right.

rough out rings by kimncris, on Flickr

getting close by kimncris, on Flickr

and in the end – it came out ok. not the super awesomeness of the Cole arri bolts, but still close enough to look like the right thing I think.

well not as good – but ok by kimncris, on Flickr

two parts by kimncris, on Flickr

this part is threaded

threaded nub by kimncris, on Flickr

and this part is countersunk for a magnet and a screw to join the two halves

magnet by kimncris, on Flickr

and it sticks!

fridge test by kimncris, on Flickr

I weathered it a little

weathered 1 by kimncris, on Flickr

and attached a magnet to my door

added magnet to door panel by kimncris, on Flickr

hopefully when the glue dries it will stick in place


Categories: aluminum, restraining bolt | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

R2 100% parts complete!

today I set about the last piece I needed to finish R2 on the outside – aside from the weathering.

top of dome by kimncris, on Flickr

I needed something to fill this circle in the top of the dome

here was the plan

plans by kimncris, on Flickr

the hole is slightly off center, so the peg in the middle has to be a little smaller than the hole so I can position it exactly

anyway – I took and old piece of scrap 1″ stock and turned a little nub

make nub by kimncris, on Flickr

nub by kimncris, on Flickr

I tapped the nub 4-40 thread in case some day I want to put a screw

flipped around and faced the front

finish face by kimncris, on Flickr


blue and groove by kimncris, on Flickr

and I clear coated that

then sanded off the outside ring

when It was sparkly and clean you could barely see the groove, so I re-did it and dirtied it up a little.

done and weathered by kimncris, on Flickr

looks good!

position in place by kimncris, on Flickr

it maybe could have been a tad bigger, but nobody even noticed the gaping hole there last weekend, so the topper is fine I think

dome topper siliconed by kimncris, on Flickr

and with that – after the glue has set – I think R2 is 100% complete.

Now it is time for the upgrades!

letting the glue dry by kimncris, on Flickr


maybe not next  Рbut at some point very soon I need to dirty R2 up a little.  But for now I want to let him enjoy his throne room look Рjust for a little while.


Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment


back from all-con

had lots of droiding fun

kim r2 smile by kimncris, on Flickr

501st photo by kimncris, on Flickr

doctor fixes r2 by kimncris, on Flickr

r2 dalek by kimncris, on Flickr

girl by kimncris, on Flickr

r2 girl by kimncris, on Flickr

jawa by kimncris, on Flickr

boy by kimncris, on Flickr

3po by kimncris, on Flickr

and my favorite non r2 pic

littlest doctor by kimncris, on Flickr

then back at home – time for some repairs

All-con was a good all surfaces test. I could used a nice rubber castor in front maybe. These hard ones are tough getting through rough floor and had a really hard time at the elevator crossing

this front foot damage is from elevators and then the handicap ramp. I got a LOT of tilting foot action on the carpets, and other hazards. Finally had time to work on some ankle locks.

damage by kimncris, on Flickr

since I don’t have much good workspace to work on R2 as fully assembled – I improvised

workspace by kimncris, on Flickr

shape by kimncris, on Flickr

ankle lock by kimncris, on Flickr

also my chain was slipping some, so I shortened it by one link

new chain by kimncris, on Flickr

also to reinforce the ankle locks I put a wood screw through the foot into the ankle on both outside feet.

screw by kimncris, on Flickr

since the chain is shorter – I had to move the motor back a little – so a spacer is needed at the bracket

gap by kimncris, on Flickr

spacer by kimncris, on Flickr

I also painted a section of conduit to hide my wires. Already the paint is coming off – but at least no wires

hidden wires by kimncris, on Flickr

one last thing- tonight I noticed one column on my back logic is out. anyone know enough about how the teeces works to hazard a guess?

see it?

bad column by kimncris, on Flickr

Categories: ankles, electronics, events, feet, logics, RLD, wood | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment