Building a Hard of Hearing Robot…

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This was a combination of two little vehicles. My original idea was to create a virtual University of Mary Washington in the game Minecraft. This however was very ambitious and when I started I quickly found out that it was too big of an undertaking all things considered. We had a guest professor that turned me toward the miniature robot world so I immediately started shopping for a new project. I came across a little vehicle that pushed around and very slowly and a larger vehicle that was clap controlled. It cycled through commands by way of forward, turn right, and turn left. I thought that if I put the two together I could have a small vehicle that was clap controlled. They were both made from the same company so I figured that everything would talk to each other fine. There must have been a problem with the microphone or they didn’t work together perfectly as when I put everything together it wouldn’t respond to clapping but rather screaming at it. Although I turned the microphone sensitivity up all the way it still would only register a loud vocal noise. It made for a bit of humor but was a little frustrating.

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I made a huge mistake when assembling the robot. I followed the wiring schematic but accidentally put three resistors in backwards. Being that the parts were so small and the soldering iron would have burned through the circuit board, I opted to attempt cutting the resistors off the board and reverse them soldering them in the right position on top of the board. Luckily this worked out. I will admit I was very nervous when I turned in on for the first time. In fact, this may even be a contributing factor for the “hard of hearing” the little robot suffers from.

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This was an awesome experience in learning how to wire anything correctly and hugely educational on how to solder. I’ve never considered myself good with a soldering iron but this project absolutely demanded it with the closeness of everything. Connections that were literally the smallest of fractions of an inch away that weren’t supposed to connect. I consider myself lucky that everything was put together correctly.

I hope you enjoyed this little journey to make a little robot that was hard of hearing. I definitely recommend “making” in general but especially making little robots or something similar that requires wiring and soldering. You will learn a lot just by doing and move on to make something from scratch of your own design.

One Response

  1. The pictures were very helpful and had great lighting that made it easy to see all the different parts of making the robot. Btw, I might be a little biased on liking your post because I’ve loved anything robots related for all my life.

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