The DiddyBorg kit is like a Rolls Royce for the Raspberry Pi makers. And it’s not just because the kit is made in the UK from where is the British car manufacturer, is not just about the money (it starts at $271 without Pi and additional parts), it’s about its features and how is built.
The DiddyBorg kit comes incomplete. You can play with this robot after you add additional parts such as a Raspberry Pi board and a pack of rechargeable batteries. Well, you may ask me why I compare it with a Rolls Royce since the car comes with all you need for a first drive. You just sit at the steering wheel, put your key in the ignition, turn the ignition switch and drive. Most probably the Freeburn Robotics Limited (PiBorg is a trade name of the Freeburn Robotics Limited) sells the kit without the Pi board to give you the freedom to choose the board you like to use with the kit. That’s why the kit is compatible with the Pi versions A, A+, B rev 2, B+, Pi 2, except the Model B rev 1 and Raspberry Pi Zero.
- PicoBorg Reverse
- 6 motors with mounts and wheels
- Battery holder
- All nuts, bolts and screws
- Battery strap and cables
The kit comes in several versions. You have to choose between a DiddyBorg kit with Black Perspex chassis, another kit with the same features like the Black but with a transparent Perspex chassis, and a Red Edition kit with red perspex chassis. The DiddyBorg Kit in Black and the DiddyBorg Kit in Clear (the transparent chassis) has the same specifications and price. The price is £180.00 which is around $271. There is also on Amazon a DiddyBorg Kit in Clear. The Red edition is a little more expensive with a price of £199.99 (around $300).
The kit claims to climb 45% slopes. So it needs powerful DC motors since the kit weight about 1.3Kg. Besides its weight, the robot can handle up to 4.5 Kg of additional load. Without any additional load, the robot seems to be doing pretty well while climbing a slope.
Regarding the DC motors, between the DiddyBorg (Black and Clear) and the Red edition are differences. Both kits use the same number of DC motors (six motors each kit), but the Black and Clear version uses 1:71 at 60rpm DC motors (6V 220mA), while the Red edition uses 1:83 at 100rpm DC motors (12V 400mA). All the kits use the same PicoBorg Reverse 5Amp dual motor controller.
The Kit doesn’t include optional parts such as a camera, Playstation remote, USB Bluetooth or a USB Wifi module. By adding these parts, the kit can be used for autonomous and remote-controlled applications, computer vision applications, or any other idea you have for it. At the same time, the final price of your robot substantially increased only by adding a Raspberry Pi board (Model A+ start at $19.99) and the batteries.
The engineers that design this robot kit take the project seriously and release instructions and examples to start playing with the platform.
As a conclusion, this kit seems to be the ultimate mobile robot kit for any Raspberry Pi users. It has a simple and robust chassis, can be added additional parts, carry additional kilograms, and work indoor as well as outdoor. The price is probably the biggest disadvantage of this kit.