IOIO on LiIon Battery Power

I finally bucked up and picked up a few Li-Ion batteries for my dust-collecting Clocky mod project. A two cell, a three cell, and a suitable charger for the two arrived in the mail yesterday. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…lithium ion battery tech is crazy. I can’t believe how deprived we were, or more accurately, how pumped I am to utilize this stuff at a decent price point.

Anyhow, I managed to spec out a high quality, thrifty Li-Ion that will fit on my payload…

ioio external liion battery power

whrrrrrrr

…and, the little sucker screams…

I have a hard connection from my phone to the IOIO in the vid. I need to configure the new ROM with bluetooth, and wanted to test the power function stand-alone. That will be the next step. The next next step will include piecing the payload together as a drivable unit. The next next next step will be tweaking the UI for some more realistic control units. After that is next next next next, and will involve a video of the unit in action.

Project Demo

One step closer…

ioio garage time

the olde clamp test

This thing screams with wall wart power. Watch…

Now comes the hard part…choosing a decent battery and mounting the circuit board savely on the chasis. I have found a few good candidates, but they are a little bulky for my application. Still looking…

The UI should be fairly straight forward. Just need a few more garage sessions, and I’ll be good to go.

The cordless Dremel was a super purchase FWIW. One of the best tools I’ve used.

Chrome Robot Wheels

These rims are hotter than the combination cutting and grinding bit on my new cordless Dremel (after I’ve been cutting and grinding servo fittings with which to secure the rims in question.)

chrome robot wheels

sittin on chrome

For a project that is being tackled in five-minute-sleeping-baby sessions, it is shaping up. I am not quite sure if the IOIO board will fit in the enclosure, but it will sure be close. I suppose if all else fails, I can chop the thing up a bit…as much as I enjoy Dremel-ing, I’d like to avoid that if possible. Maybe next five minute session…

Rattle Can Makeover

Impatiently awaiting my Dremel from Amazon, I made an executive decision that Clocky’s bright orange motif had to go. Clocky already had some big rims; sort of like my SS. Sort of too like my Yukon. Hmm…black and chrome…sort of a no-brainer.

Step 1: teardown / spray paint

tear down

parts

Step 2: Re-assemble

bringin sexy black

sum of parts

Much better. Hoping to have the little guy rotary-drilled and souped-up before too long. Check back in soon.

Custom IOIO Enclosure

My conversion from DC motors to continuous drive servos is going to be a little more involved than first assumed. The idea is to keep the speaker, upgrade the drive-train, and re-purpose some buttons for power and possible function modes. Oh, and perhaps the toughest item…enclosing the IOIO itself…without nuking the bluetooth function.

Here goes nothing…

ioio enclosure teardown

guts

It became quite clear that I need to gear up before proceeding.

hot glue gun and dremel from amazon

primero

Shipped and on the way…hoping to get a chance this weekend to get my grind (and glue) on.

IOIO Project Revamp

A while back, I put together a project that added remote control via an Android. I broke out the leads to the DC motors that were existent, and left the structure largely intact…resulting in a monster of a build.

ioio remote

here we go again


I would like to clean the build up a bit, but to do so will need to go with a different approach. I am looking into gutting the existing components entirely, and implementing continuous drive servos as my powertrain. This will likely get messy.

Servo motors will add big gains in the power consumption realm, and provide added control. I am not looking for speed, so I think this option might work out well. Stay tuned…

IOIODC Project Details

Consider this the conclusion of the IOIO DC motor experiment until further notice…

IOIO DC Motor Code

still ugly

I’m chalking this up as a success. Even though it is ugly and raw, I learned a ton mashing this thing together. Very fulfilling project from a nerd standpoint: I learned more Java, had to buckle down and do a little EE, kicked up the soldering skills a notch, and introduced a few more components’ features into my ghetto skill set.

My code is live on github with a preemptive v1.0 push…

IOIO DC Motor Code

IOIO DC Motor Code

I also dumped the apk to the Android Market as promised.

Pins 21 though 26, wired through the usual candidates on an H-Bridge. Contact me with any details…it should be very spec sheet-heavy though. The main stumbling point is with the power source, so keep that on the front burner.

Cheers. This may be my last time intensive project for some time. Hardware is time-costly…I am planning to take on the software project I have been contemplating between diaper changes and feedings. Look for some dad stuff in the mean time…

Remote Control Via Android

The motorized orange thing project is a wrap. Well, as wrapped as it will be for the time being…Katie is full term, so we are working on borrowed time. I managed to introduce remote control to the orange thing via Android and my IOIO board.

I found a goofy motorized alarm clock, Clocky, on Woot a while ago. My first thought was something along the lines of ‘that looks like a great thing to tear apart.’ The unit is designed to make a lot of noise, and drop off the nightstand when the alarm is triggered…key features are its ‘ruggedness’ and two-wheel design. Pretty slick platform for horsing around with my IOIO.

Once it arrived, I began ripping it apart:

clocky's guts

clocky's guts

My focus points were fairly straight forward…keep the drive train system intact, and gain control of the motor function. The stock power was via four AAA batteries, so I did some testing with my 3.3V outputs on the IOIO:

breakout to ioio

broken-out

My 3.3V connections really made the unit crank. The on-board DC motors were fairly snappy…looked promising. I broke out the leads from the battery holder as well, figuring that I *may be able to drive the IOIO with the 6V. That is when thing got sort of dicey…I could run over a hard connection, but the current needs of the board / bluetooth setup was too great for this application.

I determined that I would need to introduce some technology, which ramped up the complexity of the build by a bit. Luckily, I had a Adafruit MotorSheild collecting dust on my bench. I scrapped one of the H-Bridge chips, and mounted it on a simple test board:

wires and dev boards

wires galore

This approach worked. DC motors are power thirsty little bastards…keeping my power sources isolated was the key to getting everything running w/o issues. Basic setup became this mess:

android ioio

proof of concep

Zip ties, electrical tape, Altoids tin, some swearing, etc. later…

ioio project finihed

fugly project is fugly

…weird orange thing is ready to roll. Check the video:

Down the road, I would like to turn orange thing into a mobile mount for the phone itself. The end-goal of this whole bizarre project would be to have a web-controlled vehicle with on-board video streaming. I need to do some research and figure out how to mash around the video feed…going to have to step the Java game up a few notches. That takes time, and spare time is not abundant…it could happen though.

I will dump this code on GitHub and throw the apk on the Android Market. Stay tuned.