Balancing Robot on

Date Mon 25 June 2012

My balancing robot made it on Hackaday and got featured on Thingiverse!.

Autonomous Car pt.1

This post will detail my plans and progress for an autonomous car. I’ll be using what I learned from building the balancing robot and courses though Udacity and MITx. The goal is to take a small 1/10 remote controlled car and have it navigate a course on its own. To navigate the course, I plan to use an Android phone, GPS, and an accelerometer/gyroscope. I will record a video stream through the phone and then process it on my laptop using Python and the computer vision library OpenCV.

The Car
I chose a 1/10 scale car so that it would be large enough to hold all of the electronics. I was worried that the cheaper and more common 1/16 scale cars would be too small. I found this car on Amazon for ...

Balancing Robot

Date Sun 27 May 2012

The goal of this project is to make a self balancing robot, also called an inverted pendulum. The basic idea is that you have a mass located above its pivot point. This causes the robot to be unstable, and without any help, it will quickly fall over. Sensors on the robot will take acceleration and gyroscope measurements, which are sent to a control algorithm. As the robot starts to fall, the control algorithm will send a signal to the motor, telling it which direction and how much to move in order to keep the robot upright. This project involves a huge range of knowledge from mathematics, mechanics, and programming. And as I've quickly learned, the theory is a lot more complex than I originally thought. When I set out to make this robot, I decided to work towards a few specific goals:

  1. Keep the cost as low as possible ...

DIY Carbon Fiber Bike Parts

Date Thu 22 March 2012

I began reading about carbon fiber design and layup briefly and realized that carbon fiber design can done at home with a minimal amount of equipment. I decided to try a small part first so get the hang of it. I wanted to mold a part from my mountain bike with the idea that at some point, I would replace the whole frame with carbon fiber parts. Luckily my bike has a removable seat stay. That's the part of the frame that connects from the rear wheel to just below the seat. The removable seat stay design allowed for removal and easy copying of the design. However, the seat stay is also a critical structural component of the frame. On to making the mold.. This is by far the most critical and time-consuming portion of the project. There are two options: make a mold of the outside of the part, or make a foam copy of the part. I decided on the the foam option because it is much cheaper. I used regular pink insulation foam from a ...