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Can this be done?

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New Member
I've never built a robot but would like to do the following. My question is, where should I start?

I want to build a robot that cleans the dust off my always dusty desk. I want the robot to crawl so it won't have a problem with pens and clutter. I want it to sense the edge of the desk so it doesn't fall off. I want it to be powered by either 1 or 2 AAA batteries. I want it to be small. I will figure out the cleaning part after I get the robot built.

Where do I start? I can't seem to find any kits or plans on the net that have those features. I hope someone can help.


New Member
:idea: I would start by getting two servo motors and modifying them for complete rotation. and find your wheels..... I good place for this is your local hobbie store, where they sell R/C Airplanes. There you can find two servos and foam wheels so you don't scratch the desk :wink:

You are going to need to create a base. Check out Budget Robotics for more info on bases. They sell a easy to work with material, and the servo mounts..... you can even get the servos there.

Next you are going to need the brains...... A PIC16F877 will be beefy enough. You will have to program it so that it does what you want.

Edge detection can be done in different ways, IR detector, switch, camera :evil: (that can get complex), etc.

For dust pick up you could use a small vaccum cleaner or put a disposable "dust" rug.... I believe they are called sniffer or something like that.

Good Luck

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