Author Topic: Stair Climbing Robot under $15  (Read 2930 times)

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Offline ucfgnomeTopic starter

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Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« on: September 20, 2011, 12:04:20 AM »
Hi - I have a project where we are suppose to build a device that carries a egg and climbs 12 steps under 60 seconds without any external aid.

Our total budget is $15

The device must touch each step, I am writing in the forums here to generate some ideas that we may utilize.

I would appreciate the input from this community.

Thanks!

Offline Conscripted

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2011, 07:08:59 AM »
Does the $15 have to buy everything you use for the project or is the $15 to buy the things you don't already have? Can you tie a line to the top of the stairs and pull yourself up? Maybe use some type of arm or "foot" to touch each stair?

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Offline Soeren

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2011, 07:37:41 AM »
Hi,

Assuming that the egg is supposed to be whole and unbroken, a hollowed block of styrofoam would be a good carrier.
Think in terms of using the egg to move the Center of Gravity as you go up the stairs.
Substituting regular wheels for 3 sharp spikes arranged 120° apart (but as a wheel) will give you a good hold in wood and with the right length, should be able to move fairly smooth over the steps.

If the egg can be sacrificed, just shoot it (Trebuchet like device?) up touching each step and going for a full splatter on the top - nobody will beat your time ;D
Regards,
Søren

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

Offline ucfgnomeTopic starter

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2011, 03:21:28 PM »
Hey Guys,

1. The $15 is for all parts and material, stuff like screw driver, etc. can be used outside of cost.

Here are the requirements.

a. Travel Time: Move the egg the flight of stairs (12) in a time of 60 seconds or less
b. Travel Height/Distance: It must move without external aid (lines/railings/tubes)
c. Cost: The cost of the device must not be greater than $15.
d. Device Shape: may not exceed 20” x 20” x 20”.-   
e. Device Material: The device may be constructed of any safe, non-toxic material and the team name must be fixed to the device.
f.Device Operation: The device must touch each and every step in its movement up the  flight of stairs. 

There are some more but those are key.

I like the idea about the Styrofoam and spike (as wheels are costing a lot within our budget), do you have an illustration by any chance of how it should look based on your comment.

Thansk!

Offline spizzak

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2011, 06:44:23 PM »


You'll need two of those for stability and the egg should hang somehow so that you can use the weight transfer of the egg to keep the weight forward.

I dont know how this is supposed to cost less than $15 though
« Last Edit: September 20, 2011, 06:45:41 PM by spizzak »

Offline Soeren

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2011, 06:46:27 PM »
Hi,

1. The $15 is for all parts and material, stuff like screw driver, etc. can be used outside of cost.
Unless you have some of the stuff you need (and are allowed to use it), you won't get far on $15.


I like the idea about the Styrofoam and spike (as wheels are costing a lot within our budget), do you have an illustration by any chance of how it should look based on your comment.
No sketch, but it shouldn't be that hard to imagine a wheel of spikes?
A hole saw and some MDF or plywood would be good for making hubs to hold the spikes (which could be any strong metal rod really).
Moving it would be by changing the CoG to just make it tip over one set of nails (each side should be angled alike and hit the steps at roughly the same time). When this has happened, the CoG is immediately adjusted for the next step.
Depending on size and step height/width, the egg in its cushion might be too little weight, so perhaps a good slab or iron (or lead if you have it and aren't scared that it kills you ;)) should be added.

A couple of servos might be good for juggling the "CoG adjuster" around, but they'll cost you more than $15, so I really cannot see it happen that way (assuming that you have to buy parts for the entire contraption).
If the egg is to be fetched and put down as well... Perhaps elastic bands would do for "motor power" (twisting them ahead of the run), as the amount of work is somewhat limited and this would save you a lot.
Steam engine and a tea light perhaps ???
Shooting a heavy weight over the stairs by a strong spring and with a string attached. The string can then be reeled in, climbing the stairs in the process (I don't see this breaking the rules, as it deployed the weight itself).
A spring from an old style alarm clock or a similar setup from a wind up toy car for locomotion.
If you're allowed to use "trash" to sweeten the $15 budget, you can go nuts, but if not, you really have to test any idea you and your team can come up with.

Just unsorted and off the top of my weary head, hoping it gets you into lateral thinking  ;D
Regards,
Søren

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

Offline Conscripted

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2011, 10:18:07 AM »
Let us know what you come up with. I'm interested to hear how you do. A picture or two of your final design would be great.

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Offline ucfgnomeTopic starter

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2011, 10:03:35 PM »
our group has run into trouble, we thought we could generate enough torque to move it upstairs but it won't do that.

any idea on how we can actually have this or something similar move up the stairs.

Offline Soeren

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #8 on: September 25, 2011, 06:26:35 AM »
Hi,

our group has run into trouble, we thought we could generate enough torque to move it upstairs but it won't do that.

any idea on how we can actually have this or something similar move up the stairs.
What exactly(!) did you do and what did you use for motors?
Regards,
Søren

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

Offline ucfgnomeTopic starter

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2011, 02:40:38 PM »
We used rat traps, but that did not work, so we're back to square one to find ideas to generate torque.

rat traps could not even move the device one step without collapsing.


Offline Conscripted

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Re: Stair Climbing Robot under $15
« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2011, 09:44:48 AM »
Can you be a little more specific? Maybe include a couple of pictures of what you have so far.

 


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