RICM Robot Parts List

RICM – The Rhode Island Computer Museum

How to obtain all the items needed to duplicate, then change and expand in your own way

The Robots we presented, and you worked with during our “Robots on the Run” workshop.

In the following list, we show the NAME of each individual item you will need, followed by a brief DESCRIPTION of what it is and does so you can remember how it looked and worked during our presentation, then WHO SELLS IT online with a web site shown, how to FIND the item on their website, and finally THE PRICE we paid for our own parts that you worked with during the program.

Many of these items are available from more than one supplier, and you might be able to find them for slightly more or less money. Have fun looking around, and let us know (via email) if you have a particularly good (or, unhappily bad) experience getting your parts.

MAGIC CHASSIS – The 2 red boards stacked one on the other, with black wheels and motors to turn them. Find it at http://www.Sparkfun.com Along the top there are 7 categories, ending in “Contact”. Just to the right is a white “search” box. Enter ROB-10825 and push the red button. The price is shown as $14.95, plus shipping which can be very variable depending upon the method you choose.

ARDUINO computer The small blue board with a USB connector, power jack and 1 long black computer chip on it. Find it at http://www.sainsmart.com At the top right there are 4 hard to read messages in very small type. The 4th one reads “Search entire store here” Enter Leonardo R3 ATmega32u4 Development Board For Arduino and press ENTER. The picture and text at the top left of the long list you see should be just a single rectangular board with the matching description you entered, below the blue box showing the price of $16.99, plus shipping (see above note).

Motor Shield board - A same-sized blue board which mates (plugs into) the ARDUINO board. The word “shield” is misleading – it is used in the title of all the various plugin boards available for the basic ARDUINO computer. This permits changing and stacking one or more “shields” atop the ARDUINO, which allows you to change what your computer will be able to do.

Find this board at http://www.sainsmart.com and continue as in the above paragraph. Enter L293D Motor Drive Shield and see the price of $10.99 in the blue box with the proper descriptive text below under the gold stars. You may also try http://www.adafruit.com The search box is the bright white box on the right side with the word GO after it. Enter L293D Motor Drive Shield You should see a picture of the board you want, with 5 extra motors and servo motors around it. This package is listed as costing $19.95, because it includes the additional items. These are not needed to duplicate the “Robots on the Run” version you worked with, but for the additional money you will be able to create your own modifications and additions to our basic“Robot.”

Breadboard – This is the white plastic item (2.2 x 3.4 inches), with many tiny holes arranged in rows and columns. It permits attaching parts such as light emitting diodes (LEDs), resistors, batteries for powering, and integrated circuits (chips) to each other without the need to attach wires directly to each other or use a hot soldering iron and solder to achieve this.

Find this board at http://www.adafruit.com and search for Half-size breadboard. You will see a number of possible choices. The one we use is priced at $5.00 and should be at the top of the list. About 6 items down the list you will find another choice, “Tiny breadboard,” which we also used during our time together. It costs $4.00.

You might like to know that when we were your age, we would ask our mothers to borrow her wooden board from the kitchen on which she might kneed dough to make very good bread, or cut things on. We would then put screws and nails in it, to let us attach wires and resistors and the kind of light bulbs in old fashioned flashlights. We might also mount vacuum tubes (what everything electronic used before transistors were even invented) and other large electrical things on the board. Mom would sigh, and have to buy another breadboard because of the mess we had made of her kitchen thing. But the name breadboard has survived, in spite of the fact that bread dough has never gotten anywhere near the white plastic things you used when you first played to our “Rolling Robot.”

You may wish to save time, but spend a bit more money to assemble the first three items in the above list. At the site http://www.Sparkfun.com enter “RedBot Kit” in the usual place. In the list you see should be RedBot Kit with part number ROB-12032, and price of $74.95.

To save money, but have to wait for a few days to a couple of weeks on average, you can search eBay.com for each of the items we have described. If you choose the lowest priced versions, these will usually be coming from China, which explains the time delay and the lower price. It is your choice about how you wish to assemble your parts.

Finally, you will want to obtain two different software programs (also called packages), and install them on your computer. These are both provided at no cost to you, and are available for download from the Internet. Here is what they are called, what they do, and where to get them.

Scratch for Arduino – S4A-http://s4a.cat/

S4A is a Scratch modification that allows for simple programming of the Arduino open source hardware platform. It provides new blocks for managing sensors and actuators connected to Arduino.

Arduino . http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Software

Breadboarding wire bundle - ID: 153 from Adafruit.com ($6.00)

These premium jumper wires are stranded 26 awg wires with male terminations on both ends, for use with 0.1" (2.54 mm) male headers. The assortment of 3" (7.5 cm) wires includes five each of ten different colors.

Ultrasonic Sensor- HobbyKing.com ($2.89) PRODUCT ID: 387000005

The HC-SR04 ultrasonic sensor uses sonar to determine distance to an object - just like bats or dolphins do. This module offers excellent range accuracy and stable readings in an easy-to-use package. It operation is not affected by sunlight or black material (although acoustically soft materials like cloth can be difficult to detect). Similar in performance to the SRF005 but with the low-price of a Sharp infrared sensor.

Perfect for collision avoidance on your next robotics project!