Hackaday Prize Entry: Experiments with Wheeled Legs

If you’ve been keeping tabs on recent developments in robotics, you surely remember Handle — the awesome walking, wheeled robot from Boston Dynamics. There’s a good reason why such a combination is a good choice of locomotion for robots. Rolling on wheels is a good way to cover smooth terrain with high efficiency. But when you hit rocky patches or obstacles, using legs to negotiate these obstacles makes sense. But Handle isn’t the only one, nor is it the first.

[Radomir Dopieralski] has been building small robots for a while now, and is especially interested in how they move. He is sharing his experience while Experimenting with Wheeled Legs, with the eventual aim of “building an experimental walking+rolling robot, to more efficiently kill all humans and thus solve all the problems”. His pithy comments aside, investigating and experimenting with different forms of locomotion to understand which method is most efficient will pay rich dividends in the design of future robots.

During an earlier version of the Hackaday Prize, [Radomir] snagged a coupon for laser cutting services. He used it to build a new robot based on a fresh look at some of his earlier designs. This resulted in the Logicoma-kun — a functional model of a Logikoma (a logistics robot designed to be a fast all-terrain vehicle for transporting weapons and ammunition) from “Ghost in the Shell: Arise”. Along the way, he figured out how to save some servo channels. For gripping function, he needed to drive two servos in sync with each other, but in opposing directions. This would usually require two GPIO’s and a few extra lines of code. Instead, he dismantled a servo and reversed the motor AND the servo potentiometer connections.

But this is still early days for [Radomir]. He is fleshing out ideas, looking for feedback and discussions on robotic locomotion. This fits in perfectly with the “Design Your Concept” phase of the Hackaday Prize 2017. He has already made some progress on Logicoma-kum by having it move in either the wheeled or walking modes — check out the videos after the break.

14 thoughts on “Hackaday Prize Entry: Experiments with Wheeled Legs

  1. “”“building an experimental walking+rolling robot, to more efficiently kill all humans and thus solve all the problems”””

    Hmmm… and then zillions of [Wall·E]s to clean up all the mess humans did to earth, please!

      1. for those who don’t can’t or want to click the link, it is a set of photos with shoes with wheels hidden in the sole of the shoe. But for many years there were the rollerskates, rollerblades, inline skates blabla…

    1. Hmm…


      Yes, indeed.

      It would be fairly easy if the “claws” were just round, each being 1/3 of the wheel.
      But…they get pointy when used as feet.

      My wild guess here is that the individual wheel pieces aka claws have a two part frame. Two strips of metal attached to a joint at the end of the “spoke”. The rubber is attached to these strips. Add some sort of articulation to the two strips to make them fold for a claw and unfold for 1/3 of the wheel. Make the spokes become shorter to pull the three 1/3rds together to form a wheel.

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