Introduction: Naval Battle Robot of the Bllazers

We are Bllazers, a team of the course VG100 in the UM-SJTU Joint Institute. This instructable page is a manual of our design for a naval battle game held by UMJI.

The UM-SJTU Joint Institute is cofounded by the University of Michigan and Shanghai Jiao Tong University with strong technical strength and excellent faculty. Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) enjoys a high reputation as one of the top universities in China, and UMJI is located in the Min Hang campus of SJTU, Shanghai, China.

VG100 aims at the training of engineers’ fundamental capability, including solving problems, cooperation, and practice. In the first project of the course, every group is assigned to make a robot for a competitive game. The robot should be able to move balls across a wall in the field.

We have two rounds on the game day. In the individual round, each group tests the robot without an opponent at first. The time used to move the balls and the final score are recorded. Then the best 8 groups will attend the competitive round.

Detailed rules:

  • The time is limited to 3 minutes
  • There are 4 large balls and 8 small balls on every side of the field
  • A large ball = 4 points, and a small one = 1 point

More regulations:

  • The size should be less than 350mm*350mm*200mm
  • Only 2 motors provided are allowed (but servos are OK)
  • It’s allowed to kick back the rival’s balls
  • There will be an extra match of 1 minute if two teams get the same score.

Our robot is designed to collect balls with a shovel in the front. The shovel can be turned over to put the balls onto the top of the robot’s body. After collecting enough balls, it moves to the middle wall, put down its tailgate, and then release all balls stored into the terrorist’s field.

Finally we ranked second in the individual round with 79 seconds left, and also got second in the competitive round. Our videos of the game day are attached below:

·Video 1 on Youku

·Video 2 on Youtube

Step 1: Concept Diagram

As is shown above in our concept diagram, the robot is controlled by a PS2 wireless controller.

The frame is fabricated by a customized acrylic board and many hexagonal copper posts. It has a shovel in the front which can turn over by connecting with two 270° servos to collect the balls. It also has a tailgate controlled by two 180° servos which can freely rotate to release the balls.

We make our robot environmentally friendly by using recyclable card board, which is easy to get in our life.

Step 2: Materials and Budget

Shown above are pictures of the necessary materials (Figure 0.1 and Figure 0.2) and their budget (Figure 0.3). You can find all the materials with the hyperlinks attached in the tabulation (Figure 0.3).

*The prices of screws, nuts, and some other materials used for connection are not included in the tabulation, because they are provided to us by the lab.

Step 3: Step 1: Circuit Diagram

A brief diagram of our circuit is shown above in Figure 1.1.

  • The two motors are connected with the wheels to move the robot back and forth, and change its direction. They are driven by a L298N motor driver connected with the Arduino and the power is supplied by a 12V battery.
  • We use two 270-degree servos to turn over the shovel of our robot, and their power is supplied by the 12V battery.
  • The two 180-degree servos are used to rotate the tailgate. The tailgate is designed to prevents the balls from dropping out of our robot, and it is turned down to release the balls to the terrorist’s field.

Step 4: Step 2: Frame Fabrication

1) Customize an acrylic board on Taobao (The blueprint is shown in Figure 2.1).

2) Use screws and nuts to fix 4 hexagon copper posts (60mm) on the acrylic board (Figure 2.2).

3) Take out some other hexagon copper posts (180mm*2 and 250mm*2) and angle irons (Figure 2.3).

4) Use screws and nuts to fix them together as a rectangle frame. Notice that the two 250mm hexagon copper posts are not in the same plain in order to make a slope later (Figure 2.4).

5) Fix the upper frame made in (4) on the stanchions made in (2) with screws and nuts (Figure 2.5).

Step 5: Step 3: Wheel Fixation

1) Fix the motor stands on the acrylic board with screws and nuts (Figure 3.1).

2) Fix the motors on the stand with screws and nuts (Figure 3.2).

3) Fix the wheels to the motors with screws (Figure 3.3).

4) Put two hexagon copper posts on each of the ball transfer units (Figure 3.4).

5) Fix the ball transfer units on the acrylic board with screws and nuts (Figure 3.5).

Step 6: Step 4: Servo Fixation & Tailgate Fabrication

1) Fix a small angle ion on the large angle iron with screws and nuts (Figure 4.1).

2) Fix the 270° servos on the angle irons in the front with tape (Figure 4.2).

3) Fix the 180° servos on the angle irons in the back with tape (Figure 4.3).

4) Fix the tillers on the 180° servos with screws (Figure 4.4).

5) Twine the tape around the 180° tillers to make a tailgate (Figure 4.5).

Step 7: Step 5: Shovel Fabrication

1) Cut the cardboard to make the shovel (The lengths and heights are shown in Figure 5.1).

2) Use 502 glue and tape to make it firm (Figure 5.2).

3) Fix the tillers on the shovel with nails and foamed plastic (Figure 5.3).

4) Use tape to make it firm, and make some drainage troughs to prevent the balls from being stuck (Figure 5.4).

Step 8: Step 6: Side Plate & Roof Fabrication

1) Use card board to make the side plates (The lengths are shown in Figure 6.1).

2) Use tape to fix the side plates (Figure 6.2).

3) Use tape to fix two angle irons on the plastic board which serves as the roof (Figure 6.3).

4) Fix two long hexagon copper posts on the plastic board with tape to stake the plastic board (Figure 6.4)

Step 9: Step 7: Assembly

1) Put the breadboard, Arduino mega, L298N Motor Driver, PS2 receiver, 12V battery, power bank on the acrylic board, and fix them on the board with insulated rubber tape, and put the plastic board on the frame (Figure 7.1).

2) Use Dupont line to connect all the electronic components.

3) Fix the tillers on the shovel made in step 5 to the 270° servos with screws (Figure 7.2).

Step 10: Step 8: Decoration & Finish

You can decorate your robot with colorful wallpaper, and then enjoy your car!

Shown in Figure 8.1 is our finished product in different views.

We hope you enjoy this instructable page and appreciate any feedback on it!