Whilst good value for money, these Robotic Arms do have certain limitations, and the biggest by far, is the lack of feed back, not that there is anything to feed back from!
These robotic arms dont actually have servo's as such, but a simple motor and worm drive gearbox with 4 cogs inside it. Anyone interested in Inverse Kinetics, wouldnt be impressed with the way this arm performs, and the supplied software for the USB version just simply relies on a timer, hoping to get the arm in a very near position to where it was programmed to go.
After reading a few very interesting topics on here, where people have interfaced these arms with an Arduino, the lack of positional feedback was very obvious, especially if you wanted any degree of accuracy, ie better then 2" resolution.
After playing around with small variable resistors to give feedback, I decided to strip down one of the "servo's" to see what room i had to play with. The following Tutorial, explains how these "servo's" can be simply and easily modified using 1 part, and a little time to give that much needed feedback, with surprising accuracy.
Parts needed:- 4 infra red slotted opto's.
3 or 4 core flat cable.
Tools needed:- Soldering iron and solder.
Endless supply of coffee!
Please note, the servo shown below is a finished one, hence the extra cable.