This project is a great weekend project. I used two motors, a plastic tub, an RC car, and some wood to create a mini RC airboat. I was inspired after riding upon one in the Florida Everglades. This took me a couple of hours, and challenged my skills. This is a project for anyone who wants a fun, neat, little robot. I am 14 years old, so I will entering this into the Make-to-Learn Youth Contest. Please read and VOTE FOR ME!
Here are the answers to the four questions for the contest!
What did you make?
I made a small version of an airboat, which uses two motors and a 9 volt battery to power it. I used a plastic tub to act as a hull and to hold all of the electronics of the project. I used two small pieces of balsa wood to hold the motor and the rudder. I also used popsicle sticks to hold it all together. To attach wood and motors I used hot glue, but for all the wiring I used my soldering station.
How did you make it?
I had to use a lot of prior memory to put together this project. First, I took apart a broken RC car and took all the motors, and circuit boards out. I attached my motors to the circuit board and the wired it together. At first, I used 6V to power the airboat, as it was in RC car form, but I had to change to a 9V battery. With 6V, the motor couldn't turn the rudder. I have made projects before dealing with taking apart remote control cars, so I knew how they worked before I made the project. Another problem I had to deal with was weight distribution. The back of the boat was too heavy and it would fall backwards. So I added film canisters with quarters in them to make the front heavier. Once that was solved, it was tippy on the sides. I again added film canisters on the sides to balance it.
Where did you make it?
I made this mostly on my workbench, in my room, with my soldering iron, hot glue gun, and tools. I soldered and glued in my room, and as soon as I was done I filled up my bathtub and tested it. I didn't need many tools for the project so, I didn't need to use my dad's workshop.
What you learn?
I learned a lot after making this project. I gained knowledge in remote controls, wiring, motors, voltage, and many other things. I used family or the internet to learn about what I didn't know. I think the most important thing I learned was trial and error and not giving up. When I came across a problem, I could have called it a day and stopped, but I didn't. Another thing I learned is how reversing the polarity on the motor makes the propeller go the other way, which causes the boat to back up!
Step 1: Tools and Materials
Here a list of tools and materials needed for this project:
A small plastic tub- to hold the parts
Four film canisters- to balance out weight
An RC car- to control the boat
Wood or popsicle sticks- to build the frame
Hot glue and a hot glue gun- to glue together the frame
Two DC motors- to propel the boat
A nine volt battery and clip- to attach the 9V battery and to power the boat
A thin copper pipe- to act as a axle for the rudder
A soldering iron- to solder together the electronics
A bath tub- to test the airboat!