The Geek Group Installs Robot, Destroys CRT Monitor


The Geek Group recently documented the process of overhauling part of their workspace to accommodate Project Jeff, a massive KUKA KR-350/1 industrial robot.

We don’t see many behind the scenes industrial-scale projects here at Hackaday, but we’re definitely impressed with the clever techniques employed to pull off this precision install. At around 5 inches deep, the original floor was far too thin to handle the weight and tortional loads imposed by Project Jeff, so The Geek Group carved out a 15′ square space of old concrete and dumped it piece by piece in the rubbish. They then dug a new hole to a depth of 2.5′ and filled it with a fresh pour that amounted to 67,500 pounds of concrete. Sheesh.

That concrete will inevitably expand and move around, which meant installing a pool-noodle-looking slip cover to protect a buried conduit from damage, as well as placing some gaskets around the edges to prevent cracking while maintaining a seal. Around 10 minutes into the video, they tackle the challenge of embedding bolts that connect to the robot’s base; it takes some patience and creative ladder positioning to fit the template in the correct position.

As an added treat, The Geek Group smashed a CRT monitor in our honor, and while they claim software limitations and a steel frame prevented Project Jeff from completely annihilating the monitor, we like to think the skull and cross-wrenches just refused to be destroyed. Because, you know, science. Videos after the break.

[Thanks Ryan and Andrew]

54 thoughts on “The Geek Group Installs Robot, Destroys CRT Monitor

    1. If they had “shit-loads” of money and resources they’d have been open to the public a long time ago. Which is the end game, they don’t want anything other than to give the resources they do have to anyone who wants to use them. The resources they do have are people. People who donate their time and skills. A small result of this are these excellent quality videos we all get to enjoy. Watch some of the captains blog and you’ll see a little about who these people really are, it’ll change how you think of them; that is if you let it. Enjoy.

      1. The captain’s blog is a bit of a turn off for me. I really can’t stand Chris’ personality at times. Although, I do admit he’s become a little more “human” with age. I still, frequently, have cringe moments though. The rest of the folks seem pretty cool though.

        1. At least you’re open minded enough to not slap a judgment on something with only one view point. You’re right sometimes there are moments of a “what the hell?” nature for me as well haha. But I dont think anyone could say he’s not a driven, intelligent, and productive individual. That too can be said of their organization. I fear sometimes people think Chris “is” the group, amd that he does whatever he wishes with it. But it does stand that he’s the face everyone sees. I doubt though that there is a personality other than his that would work better for such a task. But I’m going off it seems. The world needs more people that have the desire to share what they know freely and to whatever degree the learner wishes – a characteristic that sums up all of the people in the geek group.

          Thanks ^.^

    1. Was this from the same video in which they demolished one of those kuka’s in a very poorly performed effort to “show what’s inside” and in the meantime they let the 20kg+ servomotors bounce on the flour from more than a meter high?
      Couldn’t watch it and clicked on another video right after that.

    1. This TV has a steel frame around the screen (it was designed to be hanging from couple of eye-bolts). This robot has “only” 350kg (770lbs) capacity. It would take way more than that to crush the tubing it’s made of. If they hanged the tv from the robot head and smashed it around they might have gotten more spectacular effects, but at the risk of damaging the robot w/o something to dampen the shocks to the joints

          1. Humans can not swing a hammer without shock. The shock is absorbed in the hammer and every articulated joint the human body has.

            Just like we don’t feel shock when walking because the tendons in our feet, all our muscles, and the ankle and (most of all) knees absorb a hell of a lot of the force. We are indeed shocking our bodies quite badly when we hit something with a hammer, but we can take it quite well.

  1. Before I saw the video i thought they had the tv attached to the arm in order to accelerate it and really smash it on the ground. What they did was the most boring thing you could ever do with a KUKA. In manual control mode these puppys are way off the thing they could really do…

  2. No, it isn’t. Project Castor is what you’re thinking of outside the building. That robot was broken before TGG got it (they wanted it specifically to put outside, and a working robot would be a huge waste). This is project Jeff, one of the 2 big working KUKA robots TGG has. Castor is still outside as a pretty sweet lawn ornament.

  3. WHAT A WASTE! Those large scale high resolution RGB monitors are getting REALLY hard to find, especially in that kind of size. They also go for a fair bit of money too. I’ve been trying to find one to use for my classic game collection so I can run everything with RGB.

  4. Tsk Tsk, Standing in the work envelope with a robot, let alone one you just installed and know nothing about… But it looks like fire is the real danger at the Geek Group.

  5. I am an electrical engineer that works in industrial automation. We currently have four Kuka robots of varying sizes in our shop. One is significantly larger than this one, one is a quarter of the size. After spending all that effort getting the concrete pad just right it really surprises me how stupid aspects of their installation are.

    First – the cabling. The robot is obviously permanently installed but they used temporary cable tray to protect the very expensive cabling. Spend a hundred bucks on some wire duct and attach it to the floor!

    Second – safety. Oh, the safety. Let’s see… the disconnect switch shouldn’t be inside the robot cell. You shouldn’t be able to sit at the robot controller INSIDE THE CELL with your back to the robot, especially if there is another person in the cell operating the pendant. There should be auxiliary emergency stops within reach of any personnel inside the cell. There shouldn’t be a goddamned MAN DOOR CREATING A WALKING PATH through the robot cell… arghhhhh.

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