Introduction: Putting Together the Roboduino

This Instructable is on how to put together the Roboduino which can be found at:

The Roboduino is a Freeduino (Arduino software compatible) microcontroller board designed for robotics. All of its connections have neighboring power buses into which servos and sensors can easily be plugged. Additional headers for power and serial communication are also provided. The kits come with the surface mount parts pre-soldered. Skill level: Beginner to intermediate.

Step 1: Parts List

What you will need:

1.. Soldering iron
2.. Solder
3.. Roboduino Kit:
4.. Kit contents and reference list:
5.. Electrical Tape
6.. Small pair of diagonal cutters
7.. Adult supervision (age appropriate)
8.. PCB holder (optional)
9.. Solder sucker, solder wick/braid

Step 2: The Small Parts

To get started, the first thing you will want to do is layout all the Roboduino kit parts and organize them for easy reference.

We started off by soldering all the resistors first. Bend the resistor ends over to fit through the holes on the Roboduino. To hold them in place, put a small piece of tape over the resistor and then bend the legs outward. You can then solder them onto the board and remove the tape.

Once all the resistors are in place, do the same thing for the 4 (3mm) LED's. Remember to put the longer leg of the LED in the positive (+) hole. The shorter leg is the negative.

Find the two 22pF (they have the black dot on top) and solder those to C2 & C3

Next find the 60V .4A Resettable PTC fuse (yellow) and solder it down.

Here comes the fun part, solder down all eight .1uF caps, 5mm lead spacing (they are orange). The first one we did, was bending all over the place. It was a lot easier to trim them down first, then solder.

Whew... we are almost there.

Locate the push button (marker RESET), schottky 5A (goes to marker F1), and 16Mhz crystal (goes to marker (Q1) and solder these to the board.

Step 3: More Soldering

Now that all the tiny parts are soldered down, we move on to the rest of the components.

The 47uF 63V cap, 8mm dia, 3.5pin spacing, will go to markers C6 & C7. Pay close attention that you are placing the positive lead in the correct hole.

Solder down the 2.1mmx5.5mm power jack, fat legs to marker VIN. Make sure you fill in the entire hole with solder.

Next locate your USB female type B and solder it down.

You are almost finished! Locate all your male header pins and get them ready. Place one row at a time to solder. Tape it down and then solder one pin end and then the opposite far end. Now check to make sure your header is flush with the board. If so, continue soldering down the remainder pins. If it is not, reheat the solder and give the header a little push.

The last step is to solder down the 28 pin socket and then carefully push the ATMEGA168 into place. Do this slowly so you do not bend any of the pins. On the Roboduino board you will notice the 28 pin socket marker silkscreen has a small circle indent, if you look at the actual socket you will see there is one on it as well. These should line up.

Step 4: Ready to Test

Now that all the soldering is done, you are ready to test your Roboduino!

Go to to download the arduino software and USB drivers. Instructions on that site will guide you through installation on your particular OS.

Start the arduino program, plug in the USB cable, and select USB power by making sure the jumper /shunt bridges the two pins closest to the USB jack.

Select the correct serial port through Tools / Serial Port / <your port>. See the arduino site for tips on which port to choose.

Select Tools / Board / Arduino Diecimila

To use servos, you need to add external power through the barrel jack or power header. Make sure the voltage is appropriate for your servos (typically around 6V).

Plug a servo in PWM.
Load: File / Sketchbook / Examples / Library-servo / sweep
Upload the program.

Unplug the USB, and move the shunt to the two pins closest to the barrel jack.

A note about servos and the built-in Servo library: Only pins PWM 9 and PWM 10 work with the Servo Library, which utilizes the 16 bit Timer1 on the ATMEGA168. You can use more servos with a software library: (less precise 8 bit timers). The Digital pins marked PWM have power straight from the battery, whereas other digitals have neighboring 5V.

Here is a YouTube video that we made for the servo test.

Now go out and start building your robot. Be sure to keep up to date with our blog at:

Now that the Roboduino is built we will start getting ideas together for our next robot. A new instructable will be included then.