Whether you want to build an airborne drone, a sturdy tank or a swift car, the ability to remote-control your own homemade robot is a fascinating concept that you can realise with a little effort and some friendly guidance.
The robot itself can take any number of shapes, sizes and configurations, depending on your own design. However, each and every remote-control (RC) robot project will require the same basic components, and will be constructed in basically the same order.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Drive mechanism (wheels, treads, propeller or legs)
- Mounting hardware
- RC control circuit and antenna
- Power source
- Remote control
Prepare your robot’s chassis, or body, for work by placing it on a clean, dry, well-lit work surface. Keep it as level as possible to avoid misaligned components.
Mount the drive mechanism to your chassis, which means installing a flyer’s motors and the propellers, a walker’s legs, or a roller’s wheels/treads. Once installed, you should be able to move your drive mechanism through its full range of motion without encountering any resistance.
Position your RC control circuit in a safe location on the chassis with regard to your robot’s future function. If you expect your robot to encounter flying debris or extended periods of heat, you should mount the circuit somewhere sheltered, or possibly cover it.
Mount the antenna to the rear of the robot and make sure it won’t interfere with your robot’s function in any way. Secure it with the included hardware so it won’t fall to one side or another.
Connect all your components together; the drive mechanism is attached to the RC circuitry, which is in turn connected to the antenna. There should only be two terminals left, which you must connect to the power source.
Mount your power source, keeping an eye on the balance of your robot, and connect it to the power terminals on the control circuitry. Use the remote control to test your RC robot’s range and response time.
Tips and warnings
- This process will result in a simple RC base. You can add anything to that base, such as a robotic gripping arm, or a wireless camera. The possibilities are endless!
- Be sure to test your robot away from conflicting RC signals and other electromagnetic interference.
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