Robot Project Day 1 – Chassis & motors

Previous: Day 0 – Procurement & Preparation


Theare are a few off-the-shelf solutions to assemble the chassis and motors. Key points to consider includes:

  • 4WD vs 2WD If you have 4 separate motors you can consider to have 4-channel motor controller which makes it a pure all wheel drive, or if you are 2 channels, you can join all the left wheels together into channel 1 and both right wheels into channel 2.
  • Extendibility They come in different colours, shape, size and price. Make sure you get at least 3 platforms and several long poll screws. Most of these chassis only supply 2 layers of platforms. You need to purchase or create an additional top platform to install your battery pack.
  • DC Motor voltage & amperage requirements DC motors come in various torque thus require various level of power supply. Anything between 2-4 volt 250mA-500mA per motor will fit most micro controllers and RC car batteries. Voltage is how much electricity there is, whereas amperage is how fast the electricity is moving. The bigger your rover size, the bigger motors you need, hence the higher voltage batteries you require.
4WD Chassis Mobile Platform source:

Thumper Mobile Platform source: 

Assembling the platform stacks

  • Bottom stack is the motor platform. This is where you screw in your 4 motors and the motor microcontroller if it fits.
  • Middle stack is where Raspberry Pi & Gertboard live.
  • Top stack is for storing the battery packs.
  • You can alwasy add the fourth stack if you want to install more batteries or additional devices such as camera or sensors.
Robot Smart Car Chassis with Speed Encoder Source:

Next: Day 2 – Raspberry Pi

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