Perhaps one of the funnest projects we have attempted around the .:oomlout:. offices. A five degrees of freedom robotic arm. While we have spent many hours twisting knobs to move pop cans from one point on our desk
to another sadly it has not progressed much further. The main reason for this is the sum total of math knowledge around the oomlout.com offices is about 4 (don't ask us to show our work on how we calculated this) so inverse kinematics is well beyond our reach.
We are releasing it in an imperfect form in the hope that the clever Ponoko denizens will be able to make it better.
Why this isn't quite ready for sale:
-We lack any inverse kinematics program which makes moving the arm intelligently nearly impossible.
-Without software limits on the servos it is capable of stripping the low cost hobby servo motors (this is alright for testing as they are only five dollars) (we have stripped two in the life of our arm and both happened when we were asking it to do silly things) (this can be fixed by upgrading the servos)
-We haven't completed the 3d model or assembly instructions just yet, but by studying the photos it is possible to assemble. (think more jigsaw puzzle than lego set)
-The gripper, lets just say the gripper needs a little work.
That said it is an amazingly fun toy to play around with, and a good starting point if anyone has ever had a desire to make the perfect robotic arm (it is open source so you'd be free to make and sell your own)
For more details about becoming a Robotic Arm Developer visit our blog
Cut the pieces out of any 3mm (1/8") sheet stock. (the file is also available for free at
Ponoko (here)) (ie. just pay their cutting cost and shipping)
Assemble using 3mm hardware
(required pieces 3mm x 10mm screw, 3mm x 15mm screw, 3mm x 30mm screw, 3mm wachers,
3mm nuts, 3mm lock nuts)
(all available from McMaster Carr, buying a hundred of each is a good idea)
six hobby servos (we use these http://tinyurl.com/c2ygay these ones would be better http://tinyurl.com/cwzygn and if you're looking for more precise motion we would recommend more expensive similarly spec'd servos)
pololu 8x servo controller http://tinyurl.com/c2ahys (you can drive all the servos from an Arduino using the softwareServo library, but the added precision and ability to set speed restrictions on this unit is very helpful, it also greatly simplifies the wiring).
Any questions or suggestions we'd love to hear them or try and help you out firstname.lastname@example.org
For more file formats and extra info visit Thingaverse: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:387
(have fun conquering the world)