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Build the frame of the Buggybot from a single sheet of 1/16-inch thick aluminum sheet. This sheet, measuring 6 by 12 inches, is commonly found at hobby stores. As this is a standard size, there s no need to cut it. Follow the drill-cutting template shown in Fig. 10.1. After drilling, use a large shop vise or woodblock to bend the aluminum sheet as shown in Fig. 10.2. Accuracy is not all that important. The angled bends are provided to give the Buggybot its unique appearance.
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Drill holes for caster plate 6" by 12" aluminum sheet 5 1/2"
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FIGURE 10.1 Drilling diagram for the Buggybot frame.
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FIGURE 10.2 Bend the aluminum sheet at the approximate angles shown here.
MOTORS AND MOTOR MOUNT
The prototype Buggybot uses two high-power gearbox motor kits from Tamiya, which come in kit form and are available at many hobby stores (as well as Internet sites, such as TowerHobbies.com). These motors come with their own gearbox; choose the 1:64.8 gear ratio. An assembled motor is shown in Fig. 10.3. Note that the output shaft of the motor can be made to protrude a variable distance from the body of the motor. Secure the shaft (using the Allen setscrew that is included) so that only a small portion of the opposite end of the shaft sticks out of the gear box on the other side, as shown in Fig 10.3. You should secure the gearboxes and motors to the aluminum frame of the Buggybot as depicted in Fig. 10.4. Use 6/32 bolts, flat washers, and nuts. Be sure that the motors are aligned as shown in the figure. Note that the shaft of each motor protrudes from the side of the Buggybot. Figure 10.5 illustrates how to attach the wheels to the shafts of the motors. The wheels used in the prototype were 3-inch-diameter foam Lite Flight tires, commonly available at hobby stores. Secure the wheels in place by first threading a 3/16-inch collar (available at hobby stores) over the shaft of the motor. Tighten the collar in place using its Allen setscrew. Then cinch the wheel onto the shaft by tightening a 5/56 threaded nut to the end of the motor shaft (the nut should be included with the gearbox motor kit). Be sure to tighten down on the nut so the wheel won t slip.
SUPPORT CASTER
The Buggybot uses the two-wheel drive tripod arrangement. You need a caster on the other end of the frame to balance the robot and provide a steering swivel. The 1 1/2-inch swivel caster is not driven and doesn t do the actual steering. Driving and steering are taken care of by the drive motors. Refer to Fig. 10.6 on p. 131. Attach the caster using two 6/32 by 1/2-inch bolts and nuts. Note that the mechanical style of the caster, and indeed the diameter of the caster wheel, is dependent on the diameter of the drive wheels. Larger drive wheels will require either a
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Tire
Motor and gearbox
Motor shaft
Coupler (with setscrew) Output gear (with setscrew) FIGURE 10.3 Secure the output shaft of the motor so that almost all of the shaft sticks out on one side of the motor. 1/2" x 6/32 Bolt Base Mounting flange Nut
Motor gearbox FIGURE 10.4 The gearboxes and motors are attached to the frame of the Buggybot using ordinary hardware.
different mounting or a larger caster. Small drive wheels will likewise require you to adjust the caster mounting and possibly use a smaller-diameter caster wheel.
BATTERY HOLDER
The motors require an appreciable amount of current, so the Buggybot really should be powered by heavy-duty C - or D -size cells. The prototype Buggybot used a two-cell D battery holder. The holder fits nicely toward the front end of the robot and acts as a
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