ArduBalance sneak preview

I've been wanting to build a balance bot for ages and I finally have to time to make one. ArduBalance leverages the existing code base of ArduCopter to produce a simple autonomous balancing robot. Features include:

• GPS, opt_flow, and dead-reckoning

• Ardupilot mission scripting

• Full RC control

• Heading hold

• Position hold

• Stabilization, RTL, AUTO, GUIDED, FBW modes

• Mavlink 1.0 support

• APM1 and APM2 support


I'm still in the very early stages of development (this video is literally the first RC controlled run), but most of the feature have been ported from ArduCopter already. This project is closed source for now until development settles down.

The current version is an inverted foam core T, but this will evolve to something much more interesting.


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  • please, how to preserve connections for rotary motors via ardumoto shield for it could works with ardurover ?

  • thanks for your answer,

    but some problems come to mind.
    in fact that the arduroller code has already more than a year, could it be updated with the latest developments and integrations apm code, and possibly if I had to do it manually, what are the important code parts to keep ?
    I think about to retain the use of stepper motor and your connection diagram.
    similarly, if it was not possible to update arduroller code, i could downgrade to ardurover release, but what could be the parts code to keep for preserve the spirit of connections for stepper motors and use your wiring schema.

    Unfortunately, throughout the ardurover project, I did not find any similar use with stepper motors and wiring.

    i'm not so advanced skills in arduino programmation for create myself a custom code.

  • Developer

    It doesn't compile for pixhawk today. It would need to be ported to the latest branch to work on Pixhawk. I have wanted to do that for some time but I just can't slot it in.

  • hi,

    since this project have been started, could i use source code with pixhawk board ?

    which issue could result about pixhawk board using ?


  • Developer

    Hi Stefan, I rebuilt the roller for Sparkfun using the APM2.5. I'll do a post about it in the next month. 

    The code is under my name on Github.

  • Hi Jason, congratulation, i love your bot and want to build one.

    Since your recommended acc and gyro seems not available anymore, is it possible to support e.g. an MPU-6050

    breakout board? or is it a disadvantage to have acc&gyro on the same board?

    This IMU is very popular on different multicopter FCs

    Many thanks for your great development work.

    Please continue the Arduroller


  • Developer

    Code is getting closer to completion. Should be testing full autonomy with GPS this weekend.

    Contribute to jason4short/ardupilot development by creating an account on GitHub.
  • Developer

    It pretends to be an arducopter right now so it has all those capabilities, like joystick control, etc.

    I need a few more days to get the HAL tested. I have the main loop running at full speed now and all the control code in. I just need to get the hardware tested and get it balancing again. Then I'll add in Sonar support for obstacle avoidance.

    I bought the motors from Pololu. 

     2 x #2284 34:1 Metal Gearmotor 25Dx52L mm with 48 CPR Encoder

     1 x #1569 Pololu 25D mm Metal Gearmotor Bracket Pair

     1 x #1439 Pololu Wheel 90x10mm Pair - White

    I am using the sparkfun motor shield since it was easy to connect to. It only requires one pin for direction where many others require two pins per motor. 


  • Developer

    I'm thinking of making one for me, the mechanics are simpler then a rover. Can you give more details on what are your motor drivers and how they connect to APM? Is there a place I can peak at your code?

    What do you think about doing a Droidplanner interface for it? It should be a great platform to control using only a tablet.

  • Developer

    I had to put it down for a few months as we switched to the HAL platform but I just picked it up again. I did have missions running a while ago:

    That's all autonomous until the end of the video.

    The new version has inertial navigation as well so if one wheel comes off the ground it won't spin up and fall over.

    I hope to have a fancy new version done next week for Maker Faire.


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