Notes and FAQs

Why are you using Stepper motors?

There are several options for motors: DC, Brushless, Steppers… We choose stepper motors because they have enough torque, you could connect the wheels directly without gears that generate some backslash (this is a common problem in balancing robots), they have good bearings and you will be able to control the speed of the motors with accuracy. In standard sizes these motors are cheap (we use the same motors used on a regular 3D printers) and the drivers are cheap and easy to interface with Arduino too.

Why you use a Wifi connection?

Using a Wifi connection allow us to work with a lot of devices (Smartphones, Tablets, PCs…) Bluetooth devices are cheaper but their range is usually shorter. Old devices are not supported and you could not connect it to Internet easily. The Wifi module that we recommend, allow us to create an Access Point, so you don’t need to use an existing Wifi infrastructure (cheap Wifi modules don´t let you do this). You can connect your device directly to the Robot anywhere but if you prefer you can hack it and use your own infrastructure therefore controlling your robot (or whatever you have created) over the Internet from any remote place in the world! (Cool, isn´t it?)

Why BROBOT?

Self balancing robots are fun to see and play. A self balancing robot requires sensors and control algorithms. You will find all the HOWTO and technical documents which explains the “behind the scenes” in JJROBOTS. Learn electronics and robotics creating your own BROBOT from scratch!.
There are some commercial solutions to the balancing robot, but here we want to share knowledge and thoughts. You can use the BROBOT parts to create more robots or gadgets, keep in mind all the devices used in a BROBOT are standard devices/electronics with a lot of potential. In the JJROBOTS community we want to show you how! You are now buying a self balancing robot, your are buying your own electronic and ancillary devices!
Thinking about creating a GPS self guidance robot? a modified version of BROBOT is your robot!

How much payload could carry BROBOT?

BROBOT could easily carry your soft-drink cans. We have tested with 500g of payload with success. More weight makes the robot more unstable but this could be fun also, isn’t it?

Why use stepper motors for a balancing robot?

There are several options for motors, DC, Brushless, Steppers… We choose stepper motors because they have enough torque, you could connect the wheels directly without gears that generate some backslash, they have good bearings and you could control the speed of the motors very precisely. Also they are cheap and the drivers too…

Could I use rechargeable batteries of Lipo batteries?

Yes, you could use standard AA batteries (alkaline recommended), AA rechargeable batteries (e.g. NiMh) or you could optionally use a 3S Lipo battery. Run Lipo batteries at your own responsibility.

What is the runtime of BROBOT?

With rechargeable AA batteries (e.g. Ni-Mh 2100mAh) you could expect around half to an hour of runtime

Could BROBOT work without the wifi module?

Yes, BROBOT could work and keep its stability. But, of course you could not control it without the module.

Could I change the name of the Wifi network that BROBOT generate?

Yes, on the configuration sketch you could change the name and also some other internet configurations. You could also connect BROBOT with your existing Wifi network

Is this a project for an Arduino beginner?

Well, BROBOT is not an easy “beginner project”, but it has a lot of documentation so you have a platform to grow your skills. You could first mount your BROBOT following the instructions and it should work OK, then you could start understanding some parts of the code and finally writing your own pieces of code…
For example it could be easily (there are tutorials for this) to write your code so the robot automatically move the arm and spin itself if you don’t send a command in 10 seconds…
More advanced hacks: Convert to a totally autonomous robot with obstacle avoiding adding a SONAR, convert to a follow line robot, and so on…

Why BROBOT electronics are not so cheap?

We are a really small startup (2 persons in our free time) and now we could only run small batch of electronics. As yo know the price of electronics drops quickly in high volume productions but we are starting… If we sell many boards and we could run more volume productions we will drop the prices!!. JJROBOTS didn´t born to get money, our spirit is to sell “good products” to found our next projects and spread the robotics knowledge.

Power supply

1. in the process of installing the battery, the battery must be installed in the direction of the battery installation above the battery box. If the installation direction is reversed, the power supply will be reversed, and the circuit board and the functional modules will be burned down.
2. the maximum voltage of the design of the car is 12.6V, using three section 18650 3.7v-4.2v battery power supply, do not use higher than 3*4.2v=12.6v battery power supply or use higher than the 12.6V adapter to charge the car, so as to avoid damage to the battery, circuit board and various functional modules.

Structure protection of robot

1. avoid the use of a balance robot on a high surface from the ground, because the car is likely to damage the plate when it falls in a higher position, causing the car to be unable to use.
2. Do not use the balancing trolley to carry overweight articles, so as to avoid motor blockage caused by overweight, burning motor and drive module, and breaking the robot frame.

Module installation

The direction of the module must be installed in accordance with the tutorial, otherwise the module will be burned because of the reverse installation. It is not possible to refit the power supply circuit of the balance car without the guidance and permission of the engineer, otherwise it will cause the circuit board to burn up the module and motor under the incorrect voltage work.

The endurance of a balanced robot

If the robot maintains a purely balanced upright position, it will last for more than two hours; if the robot moves at full speed by remote control, it will last for more than 40 minutes. In other cases, the endurance time has not been tested.

balanced robot initialization

You need to use the balance robot to stand upright and press the power switch. After power on, wait a few seconds, wait for the initialization of all modules, then you can perform balanced function operation.

The attitude data read normally, but motor doesn’t work.

The hardware has been test strictly, so seldom hardware problems occur.When you use one pulse output signal, you can only measure the motor speed. If you use two pulse output signals, you can measure the motor speed and direction in the same time.

You can’t upload the demo to UNO when the buluetooth have already plugged in stabilizer shield.

Since the serial ports have been taken, you’d better unplug jumper first, and then upload the demo.