RC Car Electronics

This, to some extent, is a continuation of this post, where I replaced the motors and some gears to fix one of my son’s RC cars.

I remove the electronics and replace them completely, including the remote for which I now use a freshly made wireless Wii Nunchuck.

The results are far from impressive in terms of manoeuvrability, but it was really fun to build and I think the handling can still be improved by tweaking the mix between the 2 joystick axes.

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Arduino, when the Servo library is not good enough…


I went back to try and finish this ball balancing project, but after some improvements I started to get frustrated by the fact that the servos kept being “jittery”.

Time for my new and shiny servo tester I thought… ! It turned out I was seeing the same problem.

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In love with Espruino…

I know, it has an awful name… still, after I discovered it a few days ago through their new kickstarter campaign I decided to give it a try. And I’m happy I did so, as it’s really an awesome product !

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Here is a really small side project that I developed while working on something else…

I had to test a RC speed controller that I wanted to use to control an electric car window motor, and for the 100th time I was facing the same dilemma: find 8 batteries for my remote control, dismount the RX part from the quadcopter and use that, OR grab the Arduino and write quickly some code to generate the corresponding signals ? Neither of which was actually particularly handy…

So I finally decided to build a small stand alone servo tester :

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SPOKA Night Light controlled from and Android Phone

You people must have been wondering “what the heck was going on” and why haven’t I posted anything for the last 3 months or so… keep reading and you’ll find out more !

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Android – IOIO – RC Servo (or ESC)

This is a sequel to my first Hello World example with the IOIO / Android setup….

Android + IOIO controlling a RC servo

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FEZ Domino – .NET Micro Framework

Arduino is great !

But programming in high level languages like Java all day long at work, I was started to grow increasingly frustrated with having to worry about “details” like memory management, no multi threading, string manipulation, etc. ..

So I was really looking for a micro controller / board that could be programmed with “real” java, powerful enough so that one doesn’t have to spend 80% of the time optimising the code, etc. …

I don’t remember how, but I found this FEZ Domino board (from TinyCLR) on the internet and I IMMEDIATELY knew it was for me…

Quite pricey compared with Arduino, but I’ve had it for a month now, and it’s such a pleasure to work with it… you still have to worry about some optimisation (for example I’m having 3 IR receivers on my Toy Tank and they all use interrupts and I realised that if I’m not careful the delay introduced by each, can affect the correct timings of the others !).

FEZ Domino with the "Component Shield" on it (I don't like the JST cable, I much prefer the RC servos ones)

Now I’m upgrading the Toy Tank to use this much more powerful board.

Electric remote controlled Tiger 1 Tank toy + arduino

It all started when I found this ex-display toy in a store, for “only” 30£ (rather than the initial 90£), because it was missing its remote…

Wow, something cheap and “not working” is the perfect excuse to open and hack it straight away…

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