This instructable will tell how to make a floor cleaning robot that uses Vex Robotics System as a base platform.
The robot uses a paint roller to pick up crumbs and dirt and moves them into a dustpan. Also, a water tank continuously drips water onto a mop that rotates back and forth. Dragging behind the bot is a towel that dries the floor and picks up any leftover dirt.
The robot also navigates it way around by following a line of tape, so you don't have to watch over it or control it.
This is an entry for the 13-18 age category in the robot contest.
Step 1: Parts Needed
For this robot you will need:
-Vex Micro-controller with battery pack
-Vex Line Sensor Kit
-4 Vex Motors
-1 Vex Servomotor
-2 short square axles
-2 12inch square axles
-2 black grommets
-2 rubber wheels
-Assortment of hardware
-several different vex beams
-scraps of wood
-9 inch paint roller
-Dustpan with rubber edge
-12inch plastic plumbing pipe with 2 plugs that fit into either end (the pipe should be about 1.5 inches wide)
*Any of these parts can be replaced with others, but if any technical part is changed you may need to change the code.
Step 2: Make the Frame
Step 3: Mount the Wheels and Front Roller
Screw on two black axle supports (one on each side, and on the outside of the beam). See the picture for placement. Then screw on the motor facing outward, with a spacer between it and the beam. There should be a space between the green axle holder and the beam. Now slide an axle in, but put a stop-collar around the axle between the motor and the beam. Next slide a spacer on the axle (on the outside of the beam), and the a wheel after that. Finally slide another stop-collar on after the wheel, and then tighten the collars up. The two collars will ensure that the wheel and axle do not come out of the motor.
To mount the front roller:
Screw on one black axle support (on the inside of the beam). See the picture for placement. Now place another support on the opposite side and instead of connecting it with a screw and nut, place a screw through the support and screw in into the motor. So the motor should now be connected to the frame with the green axle support on the very end. Next take the paint roller and insert the black grommets (they should have spikes around the outside and a square hole in the middle) into either end of the paint roller. Then slide a long axle (the 12 inch) through the frame, through the grommets, and finally into the motor. Use stop-collars to hole the roller in place.
*The pictures will probably be most useful while doing this step.
Step 4: Attach the Mop
Step 5: Add the Dustpan
Step 6: Mount the Water Tank
Now to control the water flow, hold a paperclip over a flame to heat it up - once it is very hot poke about five holes in the tank (all in a line, and spread out). Make one more hole about 60 degrees above the others to allow air in the tank. Then just put the plugs in the ends and slide it in the wooden brackets. This was one of the things that I didn't have much time for, so for now just turn it manually to control the water flow.
Step 7: Make the Towel Bundle
Step 8: Attach the Microcontroller and Wire It Up
Now just screw on the controller to the back beam in an upright position (it was the easiest way to fit it in). Next mount the line sensors to the left part of the beam that extends out (see picture).
Then plug everything in as follows:
-right wheel motor into motor #1
-left wheel motor into motor #2
-mop servo into motor #3
-front roller into motor #8 (you will probably need to use an extension cord to reach the controller)
-right line sensor into input #1
-middle line sensor into input #2
-left line sensor into input #3
Step 9: Progam the Controller and Test It Out
To make the robot go where you want, just lay down some dark electrical tape or other tape that is dark and is about a half an inch wide. Then just fill up the tank and turn it over so it starts to drip, put the robot next to the line so the sensors are directly above the tape, and turn the controller on.
I am hoping to possibly add something to control the water flow, and also use an ultrasonic sensor to navigate throughout the house without needing a line.
Feel free to leave suggestions in the comments.