Robo RC

When my son wanted me to buy him a toy robot I asked him if he would like to build one with me instead, he was so interested so I told him that it will be a car robot with two motorized wheels controlled from the phone over bluetooth and he needs to sketch the design then build it using Lego blocks.

IMG_20150110_115340 IMG_20150110_115358 IMG_20150110_115409IMG_20150301_184414 IMG_20150301_184527 IMG_20150301_184516 IMG_20150301_184501 IMG_20150301_184432 device-2015-03-07-210547

While he was busy with the sketches I started looking for parts, so I went to eBay and found these wheels

They come in two speeds, I ordered the slower one since it has more torque.
These wheel will need something to control them since the Arduino micro-controller is not strong enough to drive them with enough current so wanted to build an H-bridge using transistors (which I have already) but I found  a module based on the L298 chip  which is very cheap and has a voltage regulator too, awesome.

Next was the bluetooth module, and I went for the HC-06 which is easy to use and also cheap.

Bluetooth HC06-2And finally is of course the Arduino board, I got the Arduino Pro Mini for its small size and low cost.

arduino_miniEven though I actually used the Arduino Uno for the development since it is much easier to upload the code and fix mistakes.

I got them all from eBay with the cheapest price I can get so some took about a month to arrive and I wasn’t in a hurry:

2x Car Robot Wheels: $6.00
L298N Dual H Bridge: $3.00
HC-06 Bluetooth Module: $4.00
Arduino Pro Mini: $2.60
40pin Dupont Wires: $1.50
Total = about $17

You will also need an Android Phone or tablet, any with Android 3.0 and up should do. Lego blocks or anything to use for the car body.

Here is a video we made showing how to use the app and explaining the car we built and its main parts:

To get the Andriod app click on the Google play icon below:

for the Android source code click here
and for the Arduino code click here

6 thoughts on “Robo RC”

  1. Hi Fahad, I am Bradshaw, a retired Polaroid Engineer and high school Physics teacher and just discovering your python login scripts for the library, panera and nordstum. I am very very interested in the concept of free, drive by (drive through, McDonalds, Home Depot, Stapes) wifi, for free low bandwidth internet communication.

    Do you have scripts, un published, later than June 12, 2012?

    I love the article about robots and your son. My son and I did that, far less effectively, with a Vic-20, car batteries, and windshield wiper motors, years ago. He is 33 now.

    Thank you. I am excited by your work!


    1. Thanks Bradshaw, i responded to your comment on the Auto login post, and I like your idea, it will be great too if it can be implemented on smart phones which I have tried to do back then by my android programming skills were zero at that time.

      I also love DIY stuff, and found my son to be the same, the problem is however ‘time’ since i have many half finished projects or projects that i have finished but don’t have time to write about in my blog.
      My dream/future project is to build an autonomous robot or quad-copter, will see how it goes.

  2. Hello! Thanks for this RC vehicle control project! I just made a comment in Google store too. I tested it on toy tank chassis, and it works well. I understand that source for Android apk is available here, but, since I am more a “hardware guy”, not a good programmer, I would like to ask: could you please help me a little with adding couple of buttons into apk, and corresponding lines in Arduino sketch? That would be for additional commands, for example – lights on/off. If that requires some small payment, I would consider that too.
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Juris, thank you for the comment and your suggestions are great, I worked on version 2 of the app but got busy, I can’t promise anything but if I get time I will work on it again.

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