The Robot Army Starter Kit is a prototype ready to combine the 3D printing technology with the industrial robotics field. In this article, I write about the Robot Army Starter Kit because I believe that it can be a powerful educational tool for hobbyists and students ready to enter in the industrial robotic field or to build several applications based on delta robot design.
The kit includes all components that allow you to build a delta robot and the program to control the robot. The parallel robot kit is a piece of plastic combined with several steel balls and optimized for the 3D printing process using PLA plastic filament.
The plastic arms are driven by standard servo motors and controlled by an ATMega controller completely hackable for many more applications.
The robot is just a platform for learning or spending a few hours playing with electronics, and perhaps this is the reason that the accuracy and the speed of the delta robot kit is not at the highest standards. Even if it is not a perfect system, the kit allows you to attach several other components such as LEDs, sensors, or even your single board computer to expand the usage area.
The impossible could come to life and this is one of the biggest things of a robotic kit. Relatively cheap, easy to program and highly customizable, the Robot Army Starter Kit is a different tool engineered to help you get started with industrial robots.
What about delta robots
In real-life applications a delta robot is used when is needed a high-speed and high-accuracy in manipulation such as pick and place, packaging, or on assembly lines from a wide range of industries.
The speed and accuracy are the cause of a low payload for delta robots compared with robotic arms able to handle hundreds of kilograms.
Reasons to buy this kit
In general, when you’re ready to buy a robotic kit you have one main reason: you’re a hobbyist willing to explore new projects or you want to get started with robots. Whatever is your reason, this Delta Robot kit can be used both by hobbyists and students to be prepared for the world of industrial robots.
Its simplicity combined with an opened platform creates a good point to work with electronics or DIY assembly method even it’s for the first time.
The parallel robot kit can be upgraded with custom features and can be programmed to do a wide range of things. For example, the end effector is designed with mounting holes that allow you to add your custom attachment.
Another great reason to use this open-source kit is the price. The most expensive component of the kit is the printed circuit board based on ATMega controller. The controller can be hacked to run your own program even you’re not an expert in programming.
The kit is built at home using a fleet of 3D printers. This is a very good news especially for 3D printer owners able to spend few dollars on a PLA plastic filament to print new components for the kit.
All arms are linked together with steel balls in U-joints, which is an innovative way to engineer a parallel robot without excessive hardware. The kit has three arms with double sticks able to offer a great flexibility in the movements and lifting different weights.
The delta robot brain is an ATMega 328 fully compatible with the programming platform used for Arduino boards, and with several extra pins where you can add a lot of stuff to build your desire robot. When you buy this kit, the memory is written with the default program designed to control all the servo motors embedded to produce motion.
In this section you can find a list with all components of the kit together with several features of the kit.
- Dimensions: 20cm x 20cm x 20cm (~ 8inch x 8inch x 8inch);
- End effector can reach a diameter of: 28cm (~ 11inch);
- z-axis 13cm-15cm (~ 6inch);
- z-axis speed: 150mm/sec;
- x-y axis speed: 250mm/sec;
- maximum weight allowed by the end effector: 0.3Kg(12oz);
- brain – ATMega 328 PCB;
- arms – 6;
- servo paddles – 3;
- servo brackets – 3;
- end effector – 1;
- base spacers – 6;
- PCB spacers – 4;
- steel balls – 12;
- Power HD servo motors – 3;
- acrylic mounting plates – 3;
- RGB LED with wire harness – 1;
- dome light defuser – 1;
- hardware needed for assembly (M3 socket head cap screws);
- battery- 1 AA battery holder;
The delta robot kit comes with a complete list of components needed to start the assembly process of the robot and build different applications. The ATMega controller also has a default program installed and prepared to control the arms for basic tasks.
The kit will have a price under $100 and contain all the components to start building delta robot applications.
With a final price under $100, the Robot Army Starter Kit has a great potential among hobbyists and students. We have to wait until the first kit will be available on the market, and I have high hopes that this step will be done soon. With a customizable body and a programmable brain, the kit is a powerful platform able to build unique robots for entertainment or to simulate simple industrial applications.