The progress to date

Hey Everyone!

So yes, I am working on building a robot. One of my childhood dreams is to compete in Robot Wars (Yes, that Robot Wars) and finally, I am getting to exercise that. This isn't the first time I've attempted to build a robot but previously, that was with my Dad. I wish I had some of the photos of the two incarnations of the robot that was meant to be but sadly, digital photography had not hit my home at that time and neither robot survived.

This year, I decided to change that and build The Honey Badger.

Like the previous two robots, the aim of this robot was not to build a Heavyweight straight away but to build a Featherweight or a Lightweight competitor. Although not traditionally popular on RW, these robots have the benefit of being smaller so a little easier to manage. They also have the added requirement to think before adding stuff to the robot, so the choices made tend to be (in my opinion) a bit more intelligent than a Heavyweight as to to meet the weight requirements.

The prototype

The original prototype was a Featherweight robot powered by 2x 12v cordless drill motors and powered by a motorcycle battery. Its armour was a lampshade!

It was pretty nippy and when armed with a set of flat fingers of metal, could be a fairly vicious if needed to be but it stood no chance of qualifying for Robot Wars because it met very few of the rules, namely the use of a wet cell battery and no safety plug. The purpose was simply to make sure I knew how to wire the robot up. Turns out I did and so I went into design.

The design

Tada! The design was a... box. To be fair, a box with wings. The idea of having a simple box is that I can actually build it in the time I had. The rationale behind all of this was the following:

Each part was thought out (honestly!). The 2WD was simple to build, the rotatory weapon has the best chance to damage/KO the opponent(s) and the wings were the self righting mechanism where the wings would extend past the base width of the robot and when on its side, would rest on that wing. The weight of the base of the robot would allow gravity to bring it back down on its wheels. I know it won't stop the robot being flipped out of the arena or on its back but anything is better than nothing ;)

Parts would include:

Construction would involve bolting the parts to a wooden shelf and then build a shell on that.

Progress to date

So here we are, the 14th of December 2016.

The robot has evolved a little bit so have 2 castor wheels at the front rather than the single one at the front and the weapon motor is now bolted to the frame so the weapon itself is nearly on the floor now to become a sort of under-cutter weapon, which is no bad thing considering all the robots in RW are wheeled or tracked. The wiring is practically done but there is a problem with the drive motors.

The drive motors are the original drive motors from the prototype. They are high RPM motors for cordless drill motors and they simply don't produce enough torque. The bigger 17ah battery stops the entire robot from moving as it weigh too much. With the smaller 7ah battery fitted (the original drive battery), it moves briefly but then the wheels, which were aircraft hobby wheels, have the inner hole stripped because the spindle slips in the wheel because it spins up so quickly. Since the torque isn't sufficient anyway, I am going to replace it with a pair of electric window motors from a Smart car. Though it is going to be slower (not by much mind) , the motors come assembled with a gearbox attached with a 90 degree spin on it when fitted, these are ideal to fit to the robot as I would think the torque will be enough to make the robot move reliably. Once fitted, the next step is the shell.

Finally, a video of The Honey Badger crashing into... everything!

Written by Ocracoke - 58