The Whistle Bot

A few weeks ago there was This Guy up on the Dangerous Prototypes site. It looked like fun so I picked one up! It arrived yesterday and I spent a half hour or so toying with it, then I started to take it apart!

Last week I was able to get FRED’s I/O board working, so the next step was to get some interesting I/Os happening! Unfortunately during the configuration change a external emergency stop jumper was loosened (but not removed) so that took an hour or so to sort out.

This is the first I/O I’ve had setup on the robot. I wanted him to be running in a loop until the the I/O was triggered but I can’t seem to find a conditional jump in the programming system. In the current setup I just have him wait for the state change.

Hard Reset

[dropcap]The Robots[/dropcap] are getting a hard reset. In a recent Amp Hour Podcast (#125) Dave from the EEVblog and Chris from Chris Gammell’s Analog Life were discussing open hardware with Ian from Dangerous Prototypes. The guts of the show was that open source hardware/software is the way to go with a project like this. Starting out I had delusions that this would be a marketable product, but the reality is unless I have outrageous amounts of funding to get these things UL listed, they’ll never see commercial production.  So, world, here ya go. I’ll start posting what I’ve got so far.

The start of the layout for FRED's Brains!
The start of the layout for FRED’s Brains!

What’s a BOL?

I’ve never shipped 1,700 pounds of anything before. I doubt if you added up everything I’ve ever shipped [fancyamp] received it would even come close to that number! Sticker shock would be the name of the game… It looks like I’ll be living off day-old bread for a while.

[info_box]Be aware when shipping giant robots that it’s stupid expensive.[/info_box]

Setting up a freight shipment is a pretty complex task. You neet to put together a Bill of Lading complete with NMFC item numbers, Class Codes, dimensions. After a few weeks of the bugging, I got all the dimension details from the sellers out in CT! Woo! Now I just need to figure out what the heck those other two things are. After a few confusing calls to YRC, I finally opened up a chat window with their online help, and it was all done in the span of a few minutes! Three Hazaaaz for the intertubewebnets! A few days later they dropped it off at Yellow Roadway YRC!

Shipment Stage 1:[list_tick]

  • Done[/list_tick]

My old neighbor and possible criminal syndicate kingpin, Don, has the garage of a god. I once wandered over in the hopes that he might have a tap set. He had 3. He was always ready to help me with my numerous projects growing up, and now I need yet another favor. YRC needed a loading dock and a forklift operator standing by ready to unload the robot when it arrived. That is not something I can get a hold of on a few days notice, but Don can. He made a few calls so everyone knows not to refuse the giant orange robot, and broken refrigerator lookin’ thing. A slightly bizarre delivery for an industrial plumbing company. Thank you so much to everyone at Wray P&H!! They’ve been incredible in setting all this up!

So after a super creepy trip to Harbor Freight to grab a new tarp, I’m ready for the robot!!