Skateboard

successful skateboard test

As Microsoft PDC approaches, I’m suppose to show off the skateboard in the Channel 9 lounge area.  I was also asked to submit it for the Show-off contest.  After a week’s worth of tweaking and disappointment, I successfully tested it. Self-balancing Skateboard PDC Show-Off clip from Clint Rutkas on Vimeo It also punched through some drywall again.

A few skateboard fixes for PDC

So I’m showing off the skateboard at the Microsoft PDC conference at the end of this month in the lounge area.  I’ll also be doing a session about Coding4Fun with Scott Hanselman, Dan Fernandez, and Brian PeekI really haven’t worked too much on it after Maker Faire due to work and it does have a few issues still.  The chain issue is the biggest and will be solved … now. After 2 days worth of work and countless hours grinding, testing, refitting, and more grinding, I think I have a solution to my chain issue. My father asked...

Making your chains penny-pinching tight

After I helped out at the Monsanto event with the pro-evangelists, I was talking with one of their engineers and he told me about a few different solutions for my chain looseness issue. McMaster-Carr has a few solutions, each has pro’s and con’s in terms of space and cost. Floating Roller Chain ...

My dad is going to love saying “I told you so”

I see now why Dean Kamen’s designed the segway with handlebars.  So tonight I finally got the balls confidence to ride the skateboard.  I have to say, is a rather scary thing since if I hurt myself, I’m semi screwed since I lack a roommate in my current apartment. By using a chair stool, I can keep myself stable enough to slide back and forth.  I haven’t tweaked the PD values enough to really feel safe enough to let go however for more than a split second.  It works though. ...

Using the force sensors Luke

Code added/fixed tonight (or if you view 4am morning instead of night…): Data Logging is now optional Force sensors are added in Is board in a safe area to start Removed I for the PID control loop More compact interface Turning code added but not “enabled” Tomorrow: Verify Force sensor code works Verify board safety code Video tape me running into walls. Tweak...

Deadman switch

Some Force resistance sensors and phidgets!

Breaking it down

I’ve been busy adding in the dead man switch and decided to video tape me taking the skateboard apart.  Everything is taken apart, with get this, 1 Allen wrench. I’m still noodling on doing some form of a quick disconnect for the wiring on the force sensors for the dead man switch.  I dislike the idea of having to screw and unscrew the wiring every time I want access.

Demo plus ideas

I attended a robotic user group called RoboMo in St. Louis and I showed off the skateboard.  I got a better idea for the deadman switch force sensor.  Instead of 2 strips, I’ll be using 4 sensors.  2 will be paired on either side to create a separated “super” sensor.  With the strips, I could technically be on with only 1 foot and still have it register.  I just ordered some 1.5” force sensors along with some rubber pads for grip. ...

Self balancing test

Favors one side, think I’ll add in a “dialing” adjustment on the null value for the accelerometers.  The reason why it favors one side is due to more weight on that side.

Humpty Dumpty managed to get put back together again

I’m stupid, I did too many changes in attempts to abstract skateboard logic from the IMU without being able to test it out.  Having bare electronics with LEDs on it that blink while being 2 miles in the air around “normies” isn’t a good idea. After 2 hours of debugging, I got this: That’s right, 200 cycles a second!  One interesting thing also is how the gyro data is coming back, it appears to be “reversed” with how I’d imagine it would be. ...