This was one of the more fun projects I've attempted and I'm fairly pleased with the results.
Most of the parts and skills used in this project are from my fighting robot hobby. It might seem like a complex project but anyone with basic handy-person skills and willing to do the research could build a similar machine.
Anyways I'll let the rest of the Instructable do the talking, enjoy!
Step 1: The Design
Step 2: The Baseplate
I decided to try and fit everything inside this sheet, it was just about the perfect size in the end.
Step 3: Turret assembly
I found a pulley like disk in the scrap metal bin which will be the base for the gun. I actually have about 8 of these disks that they scrapped for some reason. A lazy susan bearing will allow it to spin fairly smoothly and a chunk of 2.5" aluminum square tubing will act as the 'tower'. It just so happened that the bearing mounting holes lined up perfectly with the walls of the square tube.
I machined some long round standoffs that will hold the standard Hitec servo that will spin the turret. I used a homemade wheel from one of my old robot projects as the drive pulley. A large elastic band will be the belt, its not the smoothest belt solution but it does self tension.
Step 4: Drive motors
They are bolted to some 3" x 4" blocks I cut out of 0.5" polycarbonate.
Step 5: Mounting turret and motors to the base
I tapped holes in the polycarbonate blocks and screwed the motors to the baseplate. Polycarb is one of my favorite materials, mostly because its clear so its very easy to line holes up and is much, much stronger than acrylic.
Step 6: Drive shafts
Step 7: Attaching the wheels
They attach to the shafts with a 1/4" locknut and a rubber backed washer to keep the wheels from slipping.
Step 8: Mounting the Vulcan
I'm using a powerful magnet I got out of a computer hard drive, I screwed a thin piece of steel to the turret that will act as the anchor for the magnet.
Step 9: Modifying the vulcan
For anyone wanting to build remote controlled projects servos are the way to go. You can modify them to spin 360 degrees or leave them stock if you just need a back and forth motion. You can get a RC transmitter, receiver, and servos fairly inexpensively if you shop around a bit.
I mounted the servo to the gun with a small aluminum mount and tapped threads directly into the nerf plastic, it seems to hold up okay and the servo easily pulls the trigger.
Step 10: Adding the camera and laser
I got the laser pointer from a local pest control place as a free gift type thing. I was having a heck of a time trying to mount it and I'm pretty displeased with the final result, even though it works reliably. I simply cable tied a mini servo to push down on the laser button. The laser has a magnet built into the base of it, so I just glued another magnet to the front of the gun to mount them together. I will have to come up with an improved mounting method for the next version.
Step 11: Mounting the battery
My mini lathe is my fanciest tool, I got it for $480 and have been pretty pleased with it.
Step 12: Main electronics
Step 13: Stiffening the frame
Step 14: Adding armor panels.
They bolt onto some 0.5" thick polycarbonate triangles that also allow the front and back panels to slope.
Step 15: The sound system
Shown here is a pair of 100W speakers I got from a surplus electronics store for $20. I wish I would have shopped around a bit because I found some similar ones for half the price later on.
The amplifier is from an electric go kart I made a few years back that had a similar sound system. I think I got it from radio shack originally.
To control the tunes I'm using my old 1st generation iPod nano. The battery is pretty much gone and you only get about 2-3 hours on a charge but its more than enough for this project.
Step 16: Mounting the speakers
Best part is now I can listen to tunes as I work!
Step 17: Camera voltage regulator
Its basically a 9V voltage regulator, a support capacitor, and two diodes. I designed it so that I can hook both the 24V battery up to it as well as the solar backup system. If the 24V battery dies or the robot loses power the camera will automatically switch over to the solar power so I can see where it is.
I added this ultimate paint schematic to show the circuit. Since the power supplies (24v battery and 12v solar) share common ground and are not wired in series you won't ever see 36V. The nature of diodes means only the side with the highest voltage (normally the battery) will pass through. If the 24V drops below 12V (really really dead) or gets shut off somehow then the 12V solar will pass through its diode and the circuit remains powered.
Step 18: Adding a power switch
You can also see the grounding stud in the polycarbonate motor mount to tie the negative battery wires together.
Step 19: Wiring
Here is a shot of the insides, its prettystraight forward and a little messy as I cut most of the wires extra long just in case. I had to extend the servo wires attached to the guns so I went to the local hobby store and bought a small roll of 3 conductor servo wire and spliced it to the existing cable.
Step 20: Adding the solar panel
For now the panel acts with the voltage regulator to act as an emergency backup power system for the camera in case something goes wrong. If the main battery dies or power is somehow lost the system will switch over to solar for the camera. That way I can at least see where the tank is and whats happening to it. I mounted it with adhesive backed velcro which is great stuff for mounting things you might want to remove often.
Step 21: Wireless setup
The laptop is nice since its mobile but I can use any computer that I install the drivers for the video capture adapter to.
The silver box is the receiver that came with the camera. It needs a 12 volt power supply to run which also comes with the camera kit. (not shown)
The black box lets me convert the TV component cables to USB to use with a computer. Its a Sabrent USB Audio Video Capture Adapter that I got from Tiger Direct.