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By linuxguy
Either next month or the month after, I will be getting the parts to build two ArduBots for experimentation. It just depends whether I get a Lynxmotion A4WD1 rover kit next month or not. :)

Anyway, it looks like regardless of which flavor of Arduino clone (either a RoboDuino or a WiseDuino) I get, I will need to create some sort of shield to go with it. They are the same price in kit form, which is what I would get.

For the RoboDuino, I would need a shield that can attach below it that has the RTC, battery backup, EEPROM, and anything else I think I might need. For the WiseDuino I would need a shield with the 3 pin headers for all the I/Os, I2C header, and anything else I might want.

I am just starting to learn Eagle, and have gone through the Sparkfun schematic tutorial and have that part down pretty well. However, I am having difficultiy with the PCB creation tutorial. It does not make sense to me at all. It seems like some steps are left out, some setup isn't correct, or something else is wrong, but I can't seem to complete the operations using the latest Eagle v5.6. I can't even get the right of the grid to snap to a 0.1" mark. I have no idea what I am doing wrong here and need some help.

I very much want to learn how to make my own shields for the Arduino and compatibles. I've already figured out how to build a shield so it can attach on either top or bottom of an Arduino workalike, so will build the controllers from kits in order to arrange shield headers the way I need to have them. I may even replace the headers on my regular Arduino USB Board to make sure my scheme actually works.

Feedback welcome! :)

By linuxguy
I'm starting to design a shield that will make any Arduino or Arduino workalike board more usable for robotics. I'm adding 3 pin headers for sensors and servos, a connector for an AdaFruit XBee adapter, and a BlueSmirf Gold bluetooth module. There are 3 pin jumpers to select the RX/TX lines between either XBee or Bluetooth modules. I'm also adding a 5 pin connector for I2C that is compatible with the SRF10 and similar I2C sensors.

Borrowing from the WiseDuino, I want to add a battery backed RTC and one or two high capacity I2C EEPROMs.

That's what I have in mind for now, and this should be a good learning project to get familiar with Eagle, BatchPCB, and PCB design in general. It's not a real complex board, but complex enough for learning and making something that will actually be useful.

By linuxguy
Parts are ordered! I should have everything to make a ZigBee (XBee) capable ArduBot this coming week. This includes a base station. :) I've named this robot A.R.T.I.E. - Artificial Roving Terrain Investigation Experiment. This robot, and all my robots to come (including WALTER and ASTRID), will be a part of my small robot swarm. I will also be building more ArduBots as I have fund available, and they won't all be exactly the same.

I am also using some components from LiquidWare, including a double wide extender shield, high capacity lithium backpack (power supply, rechargable via USB), and some mini prototype boards.

I'm also continuing my design work on my RoboShield, but am having difficulty getting the board routed. It's laid out the way I want it, but for some reason I can't get it completely routed and I don't know why. This is my first board design.