Ez Arduino MiniKame Mk2 - Making a 8 DOF 3D Print Quadruped Robot

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About: We love robotics!

This is an inexpensive 3D printed 8 DOF quadruped robot using Arduino kind control board. It has two playing modes. One is autonoumose pilot mode which the robot walks and performs action randomly. The other is control mode where the robot is controlled by iPhone or Android phone via BLE technology.

This instructable page contains detail of steps in sequence of videos to people who are interested to build one.

We have a hexapod robot, you may like to make it too, see here.

Step 1: Printing 3D Models

You can download the 3D printed STL models here. Those samples are printed in PLA. Suggested parameters for slicing the models to print are as followings. You may adjust them to fit the 3D printer you're using.

  • bottom/top thickness: 1mm
  • shell thickness: 1.2mm
  • layer height: 0.2mm
  • fill density: 10%
  • support: yes
  • adhesion type: skirt or brim

If you don't have a 3D printer, you may find online 3D print service.

Step 2: Software

uploading the Arduino code by open firmware.ino in the Arduino Software, see step 10 on IOS app and step 11 on Android app to control the robot.

for HuaDuino, in Arduino IDE software:

  • the board selection: "Arduino Nano", processor "ATmega328" for AVR Boards support version 1.6.20 or older.
  • the board selection: "Arduino Nano", processor "ATmega328 (Old Bootloader)" for AVR Boards support version 1.6.21 or newer.

Step 3: Electronics Components

    The electronic components can be found in online store such as ebay, amazon, aliexpress and etc.

    • a HuaDuino board, it is Arduino Nano compatible with enhanced features. It integrates everything on a single PCB. It's a lot easier for people to make a bot with it. Embedded battery charging circuit, battery charging is more convenient. It can be found on Amazon and ebay.
    • a single 3.7V 18650 lithium ion battery or battery pack with XH2.54 connector, if you want longer running time getting a pack with two 18650 in parallel. You may like to use this 18650 battery holder. However, it is also fine to use 3.7V 10440 lithium ion and 3.7V lithium polymer battery dimension not bigger than W35mm, L70mm & T60mm. The photo is with two 10440 lithium batteries in parallel.
    • 8 x Tower Pro SG90/compatible 9g servos OR tower pro MG90s/ compatible. Just print the STL models for the type of servo you choose.
    • a BT-05 CC2540 Bluetooth LE module - this is optional if you don't need App control. In fact, there are many BLE modules named differently, but they are built with CC254x chip. Examples such as HM-10 and CC41-A are the typical you can find in the market. Since the firmware is different, the AT command set may vary too. You may use this code to identify them. To work with the robot code and the apps, baud rate is required to set to 115200; service UUID must set to 0xDFB0 and characteristic UUID must set to 0xDFB1 using the AT commands. Below is the code intended to do that automatically but it may not work if you have different one.. The reference of the AT command set to configure BT-05 BLE can be downloaded here. You don't need this module if you like to make this gamepad to control and play.

    • a female-female dupoint wire or anything you can figure out for connecting two pins
    • some m2x6 tapping screws

    The following Arduino code issues AT commands setting BLE module UUID, characteristic and baud rate, assuming the BLE default baud rate is 9600. For running this program in HuaDuino with the module onto it, the S1 switch must be set to the BT position.

    void setup() {
      Serial.begin(9600); //change to fit your ble initial baud_rate
      Serial.println("AT+UUID0xDFB0\r"); // uuid
      delay(50);
      Serial.println("AT+CHAR0xDFB1\r"); // characteristic
      delay(50);
      Serial.println("AT+BAUD8\r"); // set baud rate to 115200
    }
    
    void loop() {}

    The steps you should do of uploading the Arduino sketch to HuaDuino for BLE control are as following

    1. insert the BLE module, switch S1 to USB side, turn on huaduino,
    2. uploading the above ble module setup program
    3. turn off huaduino, switch S1 to BT side
    4. turn on huaduino, let the ble module setup program run in few seconds.
    5. switch S1 to USB side
    6. uploading the robot code by open "firmware.ino"
    7. switch S1 back to BT side, the robot now can be controlled by BLE

    Step 4: Installation of Servos and the Control Board

    Step 5: Legs

    Step 6: Servo Wiring

    Connection to digital pins of HuaDuino are as followings:

    • D2 to front right hip servo
    • D3 to front right leg servo
    • D4 to back right hip servo
    • D5 to back right leg servo
    • D6 to back left hip servo
    • D7 to back left leg servo
    • D8 to front left hip servo
    • D9 to front left leg servo

    Step 7: Calibration

    Using a du-point wire between D12 and 3.3V pin, the robot servos will be set to default angle and in stance position. This is the status for installing servos and having servo arm capping on the correct angle.

    Step 8: Installation of Servo Arms

    while the du-point wire connected between D12 and 3.3V pin, puts the servo arms to the servo shaft

    Step 9: Finishing Up

    insert the CC2540 Bluetooth BLE module to the board's Bluetooth connector, and slide the S1 switch to the BT side, finally closes the robot with the top cover.

    Step 10: Plays Using IPhone

    To success doing this part, you must configure CC2540 Bluetooth BLE module, see the step 3 - electronics components
    • opens the iOS app and closes it the robot,
    • after few seconds the BLE paring between the robot and iPhone should be done. You will see the connection symbol changed to green.
    • press the top middle virtual button will switch the robot to control mode, and press again will turn back to autonomous self walking mode.

    Step 11: Plays Using Android Phone

    • open the Android app while robot is on pressing the connection symbol closed the top edge.
    • after few seconds you should see listed BLE device and
    • select it and connection symbol should turn to blue when successes
    • press the top middle virtual button it will switch to control mode and press again it will back to autonomous self walking mode

    Step 12: Battery Charging

    • plugs a 5V power source micro USB cable to the robot USB port
    • a red light indicates charging
    • a green light indicates charging completed

    Microcontroller Contest

    Runner Up in the
    Microcontroller Contest

    2 People Made This Project!

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    62 Discussions

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    ib22861

    7 weeks ago

    im having trouble with code so I downloaded the firmware code and i copied and pasted the other codes into other tab and im getting compiling errors and exit statuses

    1 reply
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    manic-3d-printib22861

    Reply 5 weeks ago

    download the zip from github, and open minikame.ino in arduino ide software after unzip

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    patty87

    6 months ago

    I can upload the program to the bot, and the app connects to the bot, but the controls do not make the bot move at all.

    1 reply
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    ib22861patty87

    Reply 6 weeks ago

    the program doesnt work for me how did you get it to work it just says undefined rerefrence to minkame

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    Jian WeiW

    4 months ago

    Hi, I am using arduino nano + shield v3.0 + 4.8v AA rechargable batteries to build up this robot. When i turn on the power to calibrate the servo, the servo is rotating non stop, I cannot ensure whether it is in initial angle.

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    MaxR108

    5 months ago on Step 12

    Hello! Thank you for such a nice bot! Assembling and playing is so easy and fun))
    Can you help me with HC-SR04 sensor? I ve outcommented the line to define sensor, but robot turns crazy: moves lost fluidity and it doesnt answer to BLE commands.
    Actually I want to try to change the code for bot could feel the line with the sensor on TCRT5000 and stops before the obstacle with HC-sR04. Is it possible?
    Thanks for reading and I'm appreciate for your response.

    1 reply
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    manic-3d-printMaxR108

    Reply 5 months ago

    the only advice to give is to double check HC-SR04 wiring if it is correct on the pins as states in the code. Suggesting you test it with a simple code(you use the Ping example code found Arduino software). Don't know exactly how to do with TCRT5000, but as long as there are enough pins, likely it is possible, but changing the robot code for that is not that obvious. The major logic of the robot is an event loop of commands, there shouldn't be any blocking code otherwise, the interactive control will not be responsive enough.

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    TrầnQ

    Question 6 months ago

    I don't have any Huaduino, but i have USB to TTL using CP2102 instead. Can I uploading the code to the BT module through it, and which part of the Firmware.ino should I upload (to the Arduino Nano and the BT module). And I'm using Bluetooth 4.0 UART CC2541 AT-09, is it the same to the one that you used in this project. Thanks for reading and I'm looking forward for your response.

    3 answers
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    manic-3d-printTrầnQ

    Reply 6 months ago

    CC2541 AT-09 is BLE, I think you have the right one. Yes, you can use the USB to TTL adapter to configure it , what you need is to use the AT commands to change the UUID, CHAR and BAUD parameters manually.

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    TrầnQmanic-3d-print

    Reply 6 months ago

    Thank you so much.
    But I have another problem. Now I can use AT commands to change the UUID, CHAR and BAUD, which means there are some parts of the Firmware.ino that I don't need to upload to Arduino Nano, can you tell me which parts of the firmware.ino that I need to delete.

    11.png
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    manic-3d-printTrầnQ

    Reply 6 months ago

    You need all the robot codes You just set parameters of the BLE module to meet the requirement for the Apps.

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    TrầnQmanic-3d-print

    Reply 6 months ago

    If I use the app with UART communication, will it work ?

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    manic-3d-printTrầnQ

    Reply 6 months ago

    those Apps only take BLE. But look at below comments, a maker developed another app using App Inventor, you may modify it to use with BT UART.

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    BrunoJ6

    Question 6 months ago

    Hello, I use playBLE app and connect the bluetooth module, but bluetooth icone become blue and not green, so no command seems to be sent to the module and arduino (I use arduino nano). I would like to say that the robot fine runs in autonomous mode. Could everybody help me ? Thanks a lot

    3 answers
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    manic-3d-printBrunoJ6

    Answer 6 months ago

    Recently aware that playBLE seems not running very well on recent android versions, suggesting you try the ios app goBLE to test if you have the BLE module setup correctly.

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    BrunoJ6manic-3d-print

    Reply 6 months ago

    Hello, as I do not control BT05 properly, I will use the HC06 (I ordered 2 modules). I started to study arduino sketch to understand what commands came from playBLE. Having understood, I will write an android app that will run the robot with bluetooth module HC06 and update the sketch. I'll put it online as soon as it becomes operational.

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    BrunoJ6BrunoJ6

    Reply 6 months ago

    Finally I understood how the BLE BT-05 module worked, so I modified the original sketch and created an apk for android (see screenshot). Please find attached the sketch and the apk. Bruno

    Screenshot_apk.png
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    TommyBuelens

    Question 12 months ago

    Is there an other site for the HuaDuino? Can’t find it on AliExpress only on Ebay but I can’t pay on it so I need to find another site or another board. Any tips?