Robot ground vehicle, just add brains. See it running at:

I thought I would like to start building ground vehicles & high powered servos and offering them for sale. This is the first attempt at a large rolling chassis - it happily carries people around for rides and has a wheelbase of approx 865mm (a bit less than a yard).

It is:

- 24V with 12V and UBEC available on board

- Large slow revving brush motor that is ultra reliable and very quiet

- Massively powerful steering servo

- Simple RC inputs for steering and motor drive

- Forward and reverse controlled by transmitter stick position

- Heavy duty 25mm frame to carry sensors, arms, manipulators, etc

Cost? Somewhere around the sort of price you would expect to pay for an RC car at your local hobby shop.

Views: 2881

Comment by Daniel Lukonis on July 2, 2014 at 6:43pm
This looks awesome. Keep us posted on your progress.
Comment by Jesse on July 2, 2014 at 7:56pm

Very cool! What's the wattage on that motor?  I've been looking at 500 or 1000 watt motors for a similar project, I just don't know what sort of practical power those really put out.

Comment by JesseJay on July 2, 2014 at 9:41pm

I certainly like to hear more.   This will solve some of my Sparkfun AVC issues, and create others! LOL

Comment by Ned Stojadinovic on July 3, 2014 at 1:42am

The motor power is about 400W, they are made for reliability and low noise rather than all out power. Still, they have huge torque and the rover will effortlessly climb until the wheels lose traction.

Comment by Keith Bartlett on July 3, 2014 at 3:25am

How much does it weigh, and what are likely shipping costs to UK?

Comment by Stephen Bennett on July 3, 2014 at 4:58am
Very interesting! Do you have any more info on the servo's? And can an APM 2.5 be plugged into it?


Comment by Gary McCray on July 3, 2014 at 9:48am

Very nicely made,

Great welded chassis and cage and really sturdy looking steering knuckles and linkage.

I hope it is possible to get this in the US at a reasonable cost because I would like to buy one.

If you don't mind my asking what are the wheels and tires - Go Kart?

Best Regards,


Comment by Mike Knott on July 3, 2014 at 11:36am

I'd like to see pricing for the US as well. Or at least for the electronics. Are you running a live drive axle?

Comment by Daniel Lukonis on July 3, 2014 at 12:35pm

Have you thought of placing this on Kickstarter? I'm sure you could raise money for this endeavor. I have been looking for a mobile ground station of this caliber.

Comment by Ned Stojadinovic on July 3, 2014 at 5:54pm

Thanks for all the comments and questions. Here are a few general answers, and please ask again if I miss anybody.

I can ship them anywhere using the usual services like Fedex, UPS, TNT, etc. I will get a list of prices to various destinations ASAP. I probably can't ship batteries, but the motor driver is good for 30V, so two deep cycle lead acids or perhaps a 5S or 6S lithium pack would do ya.

The systems are all compatible with RC inputs. At the moment it is all being run by a simple RC receiver, but simply add an APM or other autopilot and you've got instant autonomous vehicle.

The wheels and tires are 4.10/3.5 - 4. These are hugely common and used for everything from farm implements to gas (petrol) scooters to wheelchairs. Available in any tread pattern from knobbies to slicks as well.

All parts are off the shelf and available around the world, so no problem with spares. The motor/transaxle is a true differential drive (as opposed to a single wheel drive) and available brand new from around $200.

I don't have power specs for the steering servo, but don't get your fingers in the way. The servo itself is 12V, and the signal cable simply plugs into the RC receiver or APM using a standard servo cable. Too easy!

And finally, high powered servos in pretty much any size are always available. Standard is RC input, but you can have any special design you like.


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