Tree Climbing Bot Climbs Tree

To test his new skills with his Arduino, [Ben] decided that he would build a robot. With no particular need to fill other than the need to build something cool he chose to build himself a tree climbing robot. He designed the body of the robot in Google Sketchup before beginning the build. The body is made mainly from aluminium, with four motors for the gripping legs and one for the spine. [Ben] controlled the motors with the familiar L298 motor driver chip and measured their position and speed using some cleverly mounted potentiometers.  The robot can climb trees of varying diameter by using the speed of the motors driving the legs to determine when the tree has been gripped.

[Ben] was then kind enough to write up a full instructable describing the build, this project includes a bit of everything, from motor control and liner drives to tips on creating a robot frame; a good read for someone wanting to get into robotics. Also check out the video after the break to see the robot in action.


15 thoughts on “Tree Climbing Bot Climbs Tree

  1. Haha, [Ben] seems a bit scared that his treeclimber might come tumbling down. Very good work though! I’d think that with every step the bot comes a bit further off the tree and eventually fall off, but this doesn’t seem the case. Thunbs up!

  2. This is very awesome. Next, you should add a “shimmy” feature so it can avoid branches. Also, a way to detect branches. Maybe the detect one should go first. Anyway, once that’s all finished, come up with something to do with a robot all the way up a tree!

  3. Trees are too irregular. Add rubber feet, climb poles, add camera mount+control.

    It carries the camera to the top, shoots some pics and climbs back down. Cheap, cool aerial photos.

  4. Ok this is actually quite a cool project and i can see some real world applications for it but i have one question. What happens when it reaches a branch or something else obstructing it’s way?

    1. Thanks for the great article Hack a Day! I posted a link to it on the bottom of the Instructable.


      As it is, it can’t do anything about branches. To get around them, I would have had to build a lifting mechanism that could move on three axes, as opposed to the one it moves on.

  5. Tree Climbing Bot Climbs Tree….? I was expecting the tree climbing bot to vacuum or something, not climb trees. Either way still cool, could be a platform for so many things… surveillance, snipers, tree trimming, wildlife research…

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