Step 11: More Videos

Picture of More Videos
here are a few more videos in case anyone wanted to see...





tycobb484 years ago
I know this post is older, but I wanted to chime in. Now that everyone is having so much fun hacking the new Kinect system, it seems that it would be the next logical progression for this project. (although I wouldn't test with the kids in the yard!) Any thoughts?

PS - great instruct - I've got a dead mower in the back and I think I've found my winter project - thank you!
johndavid400 (author)  tycobb484 years ago
hadn't thought of using kinect.... though I had thought of trying to interface a neural impulse sensor to the Arduino and driving the lawnbot around using "mind control", which I still might do when I get more money.

check it out here:
mrdakota4 years ago
Mine is coming along nicely, waiting for the digikey stuff.
I wanted study the video operation and noticed that it would be nice to see how you are operating the transmitter.
Have you modified the left stick(mode2)to be spring loaded to center?
I plan on using my old JR 9503 computer radio and playing with some of the mixing functions to ease the operational functions.
In far northeastern IL
johndavid400 (author)  mrdakota4 years ago
That sounds awesome, and yes, I did modify the left (throttle) control stick to be spring-loaded. You can either remove the spring from one of the unused channels (like the rudder or ailerons) and use the spring for the throttle, or you can salvage one from an old/broken transmitter. I found 2 transmitters at a hobby shop closeout sale for $5 each with no crystals and have been using them for parts on my newer 2.4ghz transmitters. The procedure is quite simple, but you will need a small set of needle-nose pliers. Your JR 9503 should work fine.

As you may have gathered, I use the left (up/down) stick for the left motor and the right (up/down) stick for the right motor, which allows for easy tank-steering with no signal mixing in the code. This (for me) is the easiest method to control the lawnbot as it provides extremely precise control of each motor.

I later came up with some code to mix the X and Y axis signals from a single joystick, which makes it easier to drive in a straight line, but is not nearly as intuitive or controllable while turning... especially during zero-turns.

It would be nice to see your sketch / code for the arduino. I wnat to do something similar to build a sercurtiy drone, with skid steering, your steering method would be perfect to use tracks or traction belts, lie a tank or a BobCat
johndavid400 (author)  alien2000496554 years ago
The code is listed on the previous page in a .zip file for you to download. If you would like to use my current code, you can find it here:

rcflyeriam5 years ago
I have noticed that the your electronics are the highest part of the mower.  Maybe adding some sort of cage or box around it to keep bushes and shrubs from catching it and breaking things? 

Got to love the RC stuff, without them, where would we be.  Keep up the good work and happy flying .... ooooops, mowing.
KD7CAO5 years ago
You've designed a neat, practical project.

1. Either make the mower a Zero Turn Radius with true turf tires or give it steering capability on a front axle. This way it is easier to mow a straight line.

2. Install a remote kill switch, since you still have extra ports on your control, install a high-voltage relay for shutting down the mower.

3. Add cameras for remote viewing this way you can see it from the comfort of your lawn chair.

4. How about inexpensive laser guidance? Setup a cross pattern and optical sensors, this way it could be self controlled (or find a Roomba type code).