A few months ago I had the idea to build a large hexapod using PVC pipe as the legs, wood for the body, and windshield-wiper motors for the actuators. Unlike my last hexapod robot, PegLeg, the middle legs would use 2 motors for lifting, allowing both to be controlled separately. This left the potential for some interesting locomotion if everything came together correctly.
As of now, the design has not been tested walking, but I’ve been able to actuate all legs on a test bench as shown in the second video after the “read more.” In further tests, it was able to barely pick itself up by the middle leg, but some more refinement will be needed before this will walk well. Most notably, the robot is quite heavy owing most of it’s weight to the 4 windshield wiper motors (from Monsterguts.com) and the 12 VDC battery that is capable of 7 amp-hours (from Amazon). The battery, although powerful, may need to be downsized due to weight constraints.
Expect to see some posts on how everything was set up and my thoughts on some of the control elements in some upcoming posts. Hopefully at some point there will also be video of it walking around! For now, here’s a video of some preliminary leg testing.
Also, special thanks to servocity.com (RC components) and Monsterguts.com (wiper motors) for their support on this project! I’m still debating on a name for this ‘bot, so if you have any suggestions, be sure to let me know in the comments!