Author Topic: Robotic arm and hand kits?  (Read 1756 times)

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Offline CountChoculaTopic starter

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Robotic arm and hand kits?
« on: May 14, 2010, 01:14:32 PM »
Hey all!  :) Rank newbie here. Let me give you all me and my son's end goal and see if you all have any input.

We'd like a device which has:
1) A gripper for grasping small objects (a hand)
2) An appendage which will move the gripper around (an arm)
3) A webcam (an eye)

And all of this attached to a PC so that we can manually control the robo-arm using the webcam. The next phase after that will be programming very simple actions for the robo-arm so it's (to a very limited degree) automated.

Do any of you have input in regards to this father-and-son project? :) Are there any prefab robotic arm kits available that would save us time building our own? My background is in computer programming, but I'm willing to get my hands as dirty as necessary.    ;D

Thanks so much!

Offline xnonox

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Re: Robotic arm and hand kits?
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2010, 01:02:02 AM »
OWI Robotic Arm Edge

Offline corrado33

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Re: Robotic arm and hand kits?
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2010, 09:32:28 PM »
Since your background is in computer programming, you'll have a pretty easy time with most of the things you want to do.  You are also on the right track by saying that you want to build a prefab kit.  Building a robot arm isn't easy.  However, I don't know if you'll find an arm with a webcam attached, you might have to do the programming for that by yourself. 

Actually, that thing that xnonox posted looks pretty cool.  For only $45 bucks unassembled as well.  No webcam though, you could probably fix that.  Have you thought about simply mounting a webcam to the arm, and using the computer to view the webcam?  I'd say that'd be pretty easy.  If you want to control the arm through the PC, I don't think it'd be THAT hard, you'd just have to interface the remote control with the PC (which isn't as hard as you would think).  Hopefully someone else will chime in and help you out a bit more...  Good luck, it seems like a cool project.

Offline little-c

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Re: Robotic arm and hand kits?
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2010, 09:27:46 AM »
if you can program, and are willing to look stuff up, it wont be that hard.

it would help if you had a budget. I have built stuff on a shoe string(a bunch of scrap from the tip), its hard. but fun if you like that sort of thing.

there is this from lyxnmotion for 360 USD

quite fancy bit of kit, you can get individual componants from the website, which may be cheeper.

or you can look at other robotics sites and ebay for componants and cheep arm kits.

in terms of a camera, its nicer to have the camera mounted so it views the whole arm. or even better, don't permanantly fix it, so you can experiment with it in diffrent places.
 buy a cheep light webcam, attach with duct tape/superglue/et al, and run the wire back to the pc. programing cameras is a pain. to put it nicely.

if you have a budget, I can have a look at what you could make from componants. I design stuff like this for work and my degree Im studying for.

Offline Soeren

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Re: Robotic arm and hand kits?
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2010, 04:45:38 PM »

The OWI-535 simply isn't worth its price. It's the worst kind of plastic, it's small and quite weak (will lift 100g max.) - and if you want to "program" it from a PC, you need to buy an interface (around $86 assembled, $70 in kit form).

A rather fast and fairly heavy robot with quite large wheels needs what? A lot of power?
Please remember...
Engineering is based on numbers - not adjectives


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