Last week I wrote about my frustrations with getting the code put together. Well, this week things seem to be going much smoother. I was able to get the code situated and BARB running. I took it outside to run some range, speed, and terrain tests (and, let’s face it, show off in front of the neighbors). The results were promising and about what I expected. The lack of any real traction was a problem on hills, even making it difficult to get down my fairly steep driveway without some tricky steering and breaking. It didn’t like grassy terrain, which is fine because it was’t really built for that, but I figured I’d give it a try anyway. The speed needs to be adjusted. When I changed the code to slow BARB down I went a little too far. I can bump up the values significantly, espcially now that I’ve added the boost function (thanks Luke, great idea).

So now I begin the transition from Phase 1 to Phase 2. The transition can be seen through the base build. I’ve taken BARB apart to apply paint and reassemble with the actual frame in place. Once apart I did some initial painting because most of the interior will not be reachable once it’s all put together. This is mostly due to the third platter I added between the base and the top platform. The purpose of this platter is to provide additional structure for skinning as well as cleaning up the cabling inside. I will be adding lighting effects to the interior and bottom of the bot for more impact. This means, also, I’m going to have to add a tap to the power box and lighting control to the code. But that was going to have to happen anyway.

The frame is currently drying from painting. As soon as this is done I will reassemble the bot and verify everyhting is still working as intended. next steps from there will be skinning and painting the outside of the bot and adding the clear panels. There’s still some design considerations I’m working through so this may be a little while. Regardless, once it’s back together I can start in on Phase 2; sensors and basic computer vision. I don’t really know what all that entails at the moment, but that’s part of the fun, isn’t it?