Robot car building! Because you’re never to old for a remote control car

At DIY one of our main goals is providing our customers with products we have tested and know. So, because of this (and because some things are more fun than admin work) we decided to build a 2WD robot Arduino car.

To make this fair, this task was not performed by the qualified engineers you find at DIY, nor the employees who have been a part of the team for several years, but by the newbie with one month’s work experience.

When building this car, part of my job was to compile a build guide for the car as well as to experience the products sold at DIY.

The robot kit is on the DIYElectronics store at R975.00 (tax incl) and includes the basics of what you need (Shown in the table below) to build your own robot car.

Components Quantity
Arduino Sensor Shield v5.0 1
L298N Dual H-Bridge Motor Driver 1
Arduino Uno Board 1
Servo Mounting Brackets 1
Servo Motor (SG90) 1
Arduino USB Cable 1
HC-SR04 Sensor 1
DC Motors 2
2.51” Rubber Wheels 2
Acrylic Robot Chassis 1
Speed Encoders 2
DC 1.5V Battery Holder 1
Motor Blocks 4
ON-OFF Switch 1
Metal Ball Caster 1
Jumper Wire Set 1
Bluetooth Module 1
Brass standoffs 4

 

So, if you’re looking for a build guide follow this link Robotcarkit, however the aim of this post is to talk about my experience building this car.

The short of it is, anyone can build this car with a little dedication, from engineers to baristas to children to grannies, I say this because I have no experience in electronics, except for once wiring a lightbulb to a switch.

What I liked about building this car was that it was an easy first-time project for me, so therefore I would recommend it to other noob hobbyists out there.

Although my first 15 minutes felt overwhelming, I was looking at dozens of strange electronics, and my mind was in a state of panic, but I used some other similar build guides to find my footing (lucky for you there’s a new build guide now designed particularly for this kit) and used them to figure out what each component was. From there the building was breezy. The build time took me about 5 hours, which might not be the same for everyone since a good portion of my time was spent holding up electronics and asking, “wtf is this” or dropping everything I was holding and letting out a loud scream. So, if I was to estimate an actual build time I would put it between 2 to 3 hours (Then again you could be an electronics guru and do it in 30 minutes, it’s all relative really).

The great thing about this build is the combination of electronics and mechanical building which magically turns in to a functional robot for you to play with, at no point do you feel like you are doing tedious work, every component requires a new technique. The hardest part for me was the actual wiring of the electronic boards to all the electronic components, certain placement was needed for components and if you have no idea how Arduino Uno boards work (or any electronic board) you might have a hard time like me figuring it out, however lucky for you, the new build guide comes with pictures to help you in wiring, so you don’t have to struggle too much.

Lastly you want to download this app, Arduino bluetooth app, to allow you to control your car from your phone.

That’s it! Enjoy your robot car, send us your videos and photos, we would love to see how you decided to build your car.