Posts with «diy» label

Spherical Quadruped Arduino Robot

[Greg06] started learning electronics the same way most of us did: buy a few kits, read a few tutorials, and try your hardest to put a few things together. Sound familiar? After a while, you noticed your skills started increasing, and your comfort level with different projects improved as well. Eventually, you try your hand at making your own custom projects and publishing your own tutorials.

Few are lucky to have a first-project as elaborate as [Greg06’s] quadruped robot. We don’t know about you, but for some of us, we were satisfied with blinking two LEDs instead of just one.

[Greg06’s] robot has a quadruped based, housed within a 3D printed spherical body. The legs are retractable and are actuated by tiny servo motors inside the body. [Greg06] even included an ultrasonic distance sensor for the obstacle avoidance mechanism. Honestly, if it weren’t for the ultrasonic distance sensor protruding from the spherical body, you might think that the entire robot was just a little Wiffle ball. This reminds us of another design we’ve seen before.

If that weren’t enough, the spherical head can rotate, widening the range of the ultrasonic distance sensor and obstacle avoidance mechanism. This is accomplished by attaching another servo motor to the head.

Pretty neat design if you ask us. Definitely one of the coolest quadrupeds we’ve seen.

Daisy is a tiny $29 computer for building custom musical instruments

Coding your own musical instruments just got a lot more convenient. Music tech company Electrosmith has launched the Daisy, an open source microcomputer packed with everything you need to code your own pedals, synth, modules and instruments -- and it's the size of a stick of gum.

Daisy is a tiny $29 computer for building custom musical instruments

Coding your own musical instruments just got a lot more convenient. Music tech company Electrosmith has launched the Daisy, an open source microcomputer packed with everything you need to code your own pedals, synth, modules and instruments -- and it's the size of a stick of gum.

Source: Kickstarter

You can make your own rotary cellphone

As convenient as modern cellphones are, there's a certain charm to spinning an old-fashioned rotary dial to make a call -- and now, there's a cellphone that caters to that nostalgia. Brookhaven National Lab engineer Justine Haupt has developed a rotary cellphone that's not only functional, but available to make with the help of a $240 do-it-yourself kit. It's effectively a throwback to the days when phones were for calling and nothing else, plus a few present-day creature comforts.

Source: Justine Haupt, Sky's Edge

You can make your own rotary cellphone

As convenient as modern cellphones are, there's a certain charm to spinning an old-fashioned rotary dial to make a call -- and now, there's a cellphone that caters to that nostalgia. Brookhaven National Lab engineer Justine Haupt has developed a rotary cellphone that's not only functional, but available to make with the help of a $240 do-it-yourself kit. It's effectively a throwback to the days when phones were for calling and nothing else, plus a few present-day creature comforts.

Create your own Arduino Library

Project Description

In this short tutorial I will show you how to create your own Arduino Library. Making your own library seems daunting at first, but I will show you that it is not much harder than writing your own script/sketch. I would advise that you comment you code clearly, because when you come back to it in 5 years time, it will help to navigate you through your code at this time in history. Here we go, let's go through the process of creating a very simple Arduino library.

Parts Required

  • Arduino UNO or compatible board

Project Steps

Before we begin, there are a few questions you must ask yourself:

  1. What will the library be called ?
  2. What will the library do ?
  3. What are you trying to simplify?

For our library, these are the answers to the questions above:

  1. BlinkMe
  2. It will blink an LED attached to one of the digital pins
  3. The aim is to reduce the blink commands to a single line

Create a Folder

Create a folder on your computer which will be used to house all of the files in this project. Name the folder the same name as the library. In this case we will name it "BlinkMe". Make sure you use consistent naming throughout the tutorial. Capital and lowercase letters do matter.

Create the files

Using any text based editor (eg. notepad++, PSPad, Notepad2 etc), you will need to create 3 blank files:

  • The C++ file (BlinkMe.cpp) : Library code containing all of the functions
  • The Header file (BlinkMe.h): Contains the library function declarations
  • keywords.txt : Used for syntax highlighting within the Arduino IDE

I will tell you what you need to write inside each of these files, but make sure you have the blank BlinkMe.cpp, BlinkMe.h and keywords.txt files inside of the BlinkMe folder. Some people start by creating the header file first, but I personally like to start with the CPP file.
We will now look to populate the BlinkMe C++ file:

The C++ file (.cpp)

This file will contain all of the functions in your new library.
The first thing you will need to do is include the Arduino.h file. This will drag in all of the relevant Arduino code necessary for your library to function with an Arduino. And while we haven't yet created the header file (BlinkMe.h), we need to import that also. So the first two lines should be:

#include <Arduino.h>
 #include <BlinkMe.h>

The next section of code is the "constructor". This will be responsible for constructing the BlinkMe object. The BlinkMe object will allow you to call any of the public functions within the BlinkMe library. The constructor will allow us to define the default variables or constants.

BlinkMe::BlinkMe(){
    _dPin = 13;
 }

Sometimes we will want to blink an LED on a different pin. So we will create a function to set the pin that we would like use.

void setOUTPUT(int dPin){
    _dPin = dPin;
    pinMode(_dPin, OUTPUT);
 }

The only thing left is to create the useful part of the code. We will create a simple function that will blink the LED for a set duration. The function will have a parameter, which will be used to set the blink duration.

void blink(unsigned long delay_1){
    _delay_1 = delay_1;
    digitalWrite(_dPin, HIGH);
    delay(_delay_1);
    digitalWrite(_dPin, LOW);
    delay(_delay_1);
 }

Here is the complete "BlinkMe.cpp" file:

The Header file (.h)

The header file will be used to create the library function declarations. Open the "BlinkMe.h" file.
The first step is to check to make sure that the library is NOT already defined:

#ifndef BlinkMe_h

If it is not defined, then we must define the library:

#define BlinkMe_h

We then need to provide access to the standard Arduino types and constants

#include "Arduino.h"

And finally create the BlinkMe class:

//Create the class BlinkMe
class BlinkMe{
    public:
        BlinkMe();
        void setOUTPUT(int dPin);
        void blink(unsigned long delay_1);
    private:
        int _dPin;
        unsigned long _delay_1;
 };
#endif

Here is the complete header file:

keywords.txt (optional)

The keywords.txt file will contain the keywords for the library which will allow appropriate syntax highlighting. This file is optional, however it will highlight your classes or functions based on the keyword mapping.

  • LITERAL1: specifies constants (eg. HIGH, LOW,
  • KEYWORD1: specifies classes (eg. Serial)
  • KEYWORD2: specifies methods and functions (eg. analogRead, digitalWrite, delay)
  • KEYWORD3: specifies structures (eg. if, while, loop)
You need to make sure you use a single tab between the keyword and the "KEYWORD" mapping. In our example, BlinkMe is a class, so that would be a KEYWORD1. On the other hand, "blink" is a function, so that would be a KEYWORD2. So the keywords.txt file will contain the following text:

BlinkMe     KEYWORD1
setOUTPUT   KEYWORD2
blink       KEYWORD2

Example Sketch (optional)

It is often useful to include an sketch that provides an example of the library in use. It provides some context. If you plan to include the sketch in your library, then you must follow these simple rules:

  1. Create an "examples" folder.
  2. Create an example sketch, an place it within a folder of the same name as the sketch
  3. Place the sketch folder inside of the examples folder
You will end up with something like: examples/example_sketch/example_sketch.ino
In our case it will be: examples/blinkTest/blinkTest.ino

Here is the example sketch for this library (Save as blinkTest.ino):


The library

Here is a picture of the library contents:

And now the only thing left is to zip up the library folder and import it into the Arduino IDE. Use whatever program you want to zip up the BlinkMe folder, and note the location of the zip file. You need to import the zip file into the Arduino IDE:

  • Arduino IDE > Sketch > Include Library > Add .ZIP Library...
  • Select the library zip file you just created, and select "Open".
  • You can now use your library in the Arduino IDE.
  • Test it by running your example sketch: File > Examples > BlinkMe > blinkTest

Download

You can download the entire library here:
BlinkMe Library

Conclusion

In this tutorial, I showed you how to create a simple Arduino library. If you would like so see another example, have a look at my ToggleTimer library, which is very useful when trying to blink an LED without using a delay.You don't have to limit yourself to LEDs, you can use it for other projects where delay gets in the way. ToggleTimer is a non-blocking timer that toggles between two states.


If you found this tutorial helpful, please consider supporting me by buying me a virtual coffee/beer.

$3.00 AUD only

Social Media

You can find me on various social networks:

Follow me on Twitter: ScottC @ArduinoBasics.
I can also be found on Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.
And if all else fails, I have a server on Discord.


ScottC 29 Dec 10:09
arduino  blink  diy  led  library  tutorial  

A Better Embroidery Machine, With 3D Printing and Common Parts

In concept, an everyday sewing machine could make embroidery a snap: the operator would move the fabric around in any direction they wish while the sewing machine would take care of slapping down stitches of colored thread to create designs and filled areas. In practice though, getting good results in this way is quite a bit more complex. To aid and automate this process, [sausagePaws] has been using CNC to take care of all the necessary motion control. The result is the DIY Embroidery Machine V2 which leverages 3D printed parts and common components such as an Arduino and stepper drivers for an economical DIY solution.

It’s not shown in the photo here, but we particularly like the 3D printed sockets that are screwed into the tabletop. These hold the sewing machine’s “feet”, and allow it to be treated like a modular component that can easily be removed and used normally when needed.

The system consists of a UI running on an Android tablet, communicating over Bluetooth to an Arduino. The Arduino controls the gantry which moves the hoop (a frame that holds a section of fabric taut while it is being embroidered), while the sewing machine lays down the stitches.

[sausagePaws]’s first version worked well, but this new design really takes advantage of 3D printing as well as the increased availability of cheap and effective CNC components. It’s still a work in progress that is a bit light on design details, but you can see it all in action in the video embedded below.

RVR is a Sphero robot for budding tinkerers

Sphero's been amusing us with its collection of robotic balls, like its adorable BB-8, for eight years. But lately the company has been getting away from the toy aspect of its products and embracing its educational potential. It's had an app that can be used to program many of its current bots for a while now, but that's only for budding coders — what do kids interested in hardware have to tinker with? Indeed, Sphero is about to release its first robot specifically made to be physically modded, called the RVR.

RVR is a Sphero robot for budding tinkerers

Sphero's been amusing us with its collection of robotic balls, like its adorable BB-8, for eight years. But lately the company has been getting away from the toy aspect of its products and embracing its educational potential. It's had an app that can be used to program many of its current bots for a while now, but that's only for budding coders — what do kids interested in hardware have to tinker with? Indeed, Sphero is about to release its first robot specifically made to be physically modded, called the RVR.

Upgrade a sewing machine into an automatic embroidery rig

A needle and thread is extremely useful if you need to fasten a few pieces of fabric or sew on a button, and a sewing machine takes things up several notches in speed an accuracy. This venerable machine, however, can now be enhanced with a trio of stepper motors under Arduino Uno GRBL control to take things to an entirely new level.

The “Self-Made Embroidery Machine” employs a setup very similar to a 3D printer or CNC router. Two steppers move the fabric around, while a third actuates the needle. This allows the user to program in decorative shapes and patterns as shown in the video below, and the build process is well documented if you’d like to build your own!

Sewing machine part is any old or new sewing machine. Only change for original is stepper motor with synchronised pulley system (chain/belt drive) and more embroidery friendly presser foot. It is recommended to use older sewing machine, way more convenient to mount stepper motor to cast iron and prices are relatively cheap.

XY movement consists mainly 3D printed parts, 12 pcs and similar parts known from self build 3D printers. Both axes use GT2 belts, NEMA 17 steppers and both directions are fully scalable.

Synchronous movement comes from Arduino powered GRBL G-code interpreter, it is mouthful, but basically machine moves using G-code send to Arduino. It is not that complicated and it is only carrier like any other one when going from system to another one.

Now we have movement and code, but how to make nice shapes and export to G-code. It is nothing to do with medieval sorcery, it is a matter of downloading Inkscape and extension called Inkstitch.

Help and examples how to use Inkstitch extension can be found address above. End result should be really close to hobby level embroidery machines, just slower speed. After all, embroidery machine is nothing more than overgrown sewing machine.