Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Autoturret Phase 3

Ok, so phase 2 was pretty successful, but to be honest, I haven't played with those airsoft guns in a while, and I forgot how much they hurt.  There was a bit of a safety issue with taking that particular track much further.  As a result, I switched over to a water gun!  Much more fun, and a lot less dangerous.  Except for the risk to my electronics...

Anyway, here are some pics of the new, updated water autoturret.  Note that the whole assembly now HANGS from the pan servo, so that any drips or leaks don't get on the electronics.  This is a great design consideration that I saw on several other water-based sentry guns.

And here's a sweet video of the system in action!  There are still a lot of bugs to work out, but it's really coming along.


My friend Jim moved to Austin the other day, and brough along a non-running 80s or 90s honda scooter.  Well, this afternoon I finally got a chance to go over it a bit.  It has a lot of potential!

Hooked up a bunch of wires, pulled the battery out of my truck to crank it, and jumped the starter solenoid with a screwdriver, and we have Fire!

Needed a little bit of an exhaust to protect the valves and my ears (and my relationship with my neighbors)

Overall, for not much time invested it's in surprisingly good shape.  Rides like a Dream!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Autoturret phase 2: It's Alive!

Got my webcam sorted out, and after a few other software and hardware hurdles I have a more-or-less functional airsoft sentry gun.  It needs a good deal more calibration, but it's good enough to hit big targets.  And I forgot how much airsoft pellets hurt!

Here I am working out a few bugs with my target stick and the gun in the background:

Here are a couple of videos of the system in action:

video 1 - this is the first test.  It misses right a lot, but it tracks and fires.

video 2 - it hit me most of the time in this video

video 3 - it hits the balloons about 3 times, but misses right a lot.  It also doesn't break the balloons.  I have some higher-powered gas that might give let it pop them.

So, there's still a fair amount of fiddling and tuning and calibrating left to do, but I am super happy with where things stand after just 3 evenings of work.  I also have already learned a lot about jMyron and video capture and processing in Processing, which was a big goal for this project.  So far so good!

Monday, July 8, 2013

autoturret phase 1 - continued

Got my new servos in today, so I spent some time building up a better platform:

Trigger servo

pan and tilt servos, and frame

and a new VIDEO with full pan, tilt, and fire.  Next up is to get the arduino and computer to control it.

Friday, July 5, 2013

airsoft auto-turret phase 1

So I stumbled across http://projectsentrygun.rudolphlabs.com/home the other day while browsing Hackaday.com.  I decided that the software is now too easy to use for me to put it off any longer.  So I spent a couple hours prototyping and learning about how all the mechanics are going to go together.

My first whack at it used an old drum bass pedal as a pivot and some small servos I had lying around, hooked onto an old airsoft pistol. At some point I might switch to a super soaker, but for now I kind of like the airsoft gun.  It's all hooked up to the receiver on one of my crashed model airplanes, since I'm really just working some of the kinks out of the mechanical parts.  Anyway, this is what I have so far:

And here's a video of the tilt and fire mechanisms in operation:

As you can see, the fire servo is a bit weak, wobbly, and susceptible to vibration, which makes it bump-fire in roughly 3 round bursts.  I ordered a few larger servos for the next iteration, so hopefully I can take care of that issue.

Anyway, watch this space for progress...