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Mat P
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Mat P

Project Help  - 
 
So I'm thinking of making a RC car.  It's going to start out pretty light, just enough to get it to work.  Then I was going to add to it over time to make it autonomous.  I was looking at this motor 

http://www.trossenrobotics.com/p/Robot-DC-Gearhead-Motor-6v180rpm.aspx

Thing is I have no idea if this is a good choice.  I have looked at the calculations and I just have no idea how to do it.  Between being out of math class for a long time and all the different units I'm lost.

 If the entire project weighs no more then 10lbs and I want it to go 2mph top speed would this motor do it?  Is there a easy way to figure out what motor you need?
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Mat P's profile photoWylie Hilliard's profile photo
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Your calculations for the speed are correct, but your understanding of torque is off.
First, rating torque in kgcm is silly since kg is a measure of mass, not force and torque is the moment (angular force) exerted by a force on a lever.  On earth, 1kg= 9.8newtons  = 2.2 lbs, both measures of force.
Second, if you are using 4 inch wheels the radius is 2 inches or 2.54*2 = 5.08 cm
Third, the calculation that you can do with torque is calculate the forward force that the motor can exert when attached to a wheel, not the amount of weight that it can carry.  If you have hard wheels on a smooth hard surface you can more weight than soft wheels on a soft surface.  The amount of weight you can carry will be determined by the type of vehicle and how fast you want to accelerate.
Finally, you are working the wrong direction for the calculation.  The longer the radius, the lower the forward force.  Forward force on the car = 3.26kgcm/5.08cm =  0.64kg = 6.328 newtons = 1.4 lb
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Mat P

Maker Faire  - 
 
Had a great time at Maker Faire NYC over the weekend.  Thank you to everyone who shared their work.  Can't wait to go again next year.  I did reach a point where I was burnt out on 3d printers, they were everywhere.  I did get to meet Jimmy DiResta which was the highlight for me.  Really nice guy and I enjoyed his demo.
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Mat P

Maker Moms  - 
 
I love that there are women makers out there.  It would be nice if this was a maker mom and Dad board.  I have a 2 year old at home and I'm always trying to include him in my making.  I try not to force it but when he's interested I let him do as much as possible.  He loves painting and anything with the hammer.
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Kalani Hausman's profile photo
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At 2 years old, you can probably get them to understand basic circuits if they are very bright or at least "press this button and that light comes on." Food-type projects are excellent at this age - I made Jell-O dinosaur footprints using the Glen Rose scanned track I shared on Thing-I-Verse. The younger kids made dinosaur noises while they ate the different colored footprints from the 3D printed molds. Other people like to cast in other media like chocolate and sugar, although a bunch of 2 year olds jazzed on sugar and caffeine might not be the best idea for a weekend of making your own projects!
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  I was at Maker faire last weekend and was amazed by all the 3d printers, CNC machines, and robotics.  After I left I felt inspired and wanting to build.  Then I got home and started going through all the projects in my head and then the cost.  I'm starting to wonder are groups like make focusing to much on projects with high costs to them?  Could we be making the maker movement less accessible to people of lower income?  One would think these people could benefit the most from making items for themselves.  The advanced tools like laser cutters and 3D printers are wonderful and the work people are doing is amazing.  I just find myself reading make and thinking I can't do these projects because I don't have these tools.  Yes I could go drive an hour to a hackerspace but with limited funds and time that's not really an option.  I do my simple projects, mostly wood working at home five to thirty minutes at a time.  My dream has always been to go into to robotics but even a simple robot can cost hundreds of dollars.  I would be interested in a series of projects from make that focus on low cost projects.  Maybe take simple useful items and show how you can make them for less then the cost of buying them.  The projects should focus not only on low cost materials but also simple tools the average person could afford.  Just a thought running through, my head that I wanted to share.  I want to start sharing more of my projects so I can do my part to support the maker movement.  Happy to do the series if make wants to fund it ;)
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Frederick Umminger's profile photoMano Biletsky's profile photoKalani Hausman's profile photo
5 comments
 
You will find many examples of designs that fit your suggested scope (costing less than buying ready-made) at Instructables, Hack-a-Day and Make's own site in addition to many electronics-based designs at Adafruit, Sparkfun and other similar sites collecting user-designed concepts.

You mention robotics, which can be created using inexpensive controllers like the proprietary but inexpensive  Raspberry Pi or fully open source designs Arduino or BeagleBone controllers (depending on the level of comlexity you need in the project). I explained some of the details in these options when teachers in the STEMulate Learning and SOLID Learning programs selected the standard electronics platform (http://www.stemulate.org/2013/06/01/solid-learning-microcontroller-options/) we would use in building 3D printable materials for educational lessons if that helps. My teachers and workshop participants selected servos for their robotic designs because they are inexpensive, easy to source, relatively precise and can be driven directly by a microcontroller like the Arduino (http://www.stemulate.org/2012/07/04/solid-learning-servo-robot-actuator/).

In writing the upcoming book "3D Printing for Dummies" with Richard Horne (@RichRap), we had the opportunity to look over many different types of 3D printers, with low-cost options like Quentin Harley's Morgan (partial Polar design), Josef Prusa's latest i3 (Cartesian) and Richard's own 3DR (Delta configuration) that can be easily created for less than $500 USD (Quentin is trying to get the Morgan under $100 USD total build cost now). Richard has adapted Rostock-like movements to use less costly alternatives like braided fishing line instead of toothed belts for his 3DR printer to make the design easier to source and less costly.

I think you will find many individuals in the broader Maker community more than willing to share their ideas and open source designs for low-cost projects that any new entrant can build atop to get started without costly equipment or grand makerspaces already stocked with a world of tools. If hte nearest such location is an hour away, it might be time to find a few others in your area and start having meetings in someone's garage or at a school to build interest in a local makerspace you can create.

The folks at the Maui makerspace in Hawai'i or the ATX makerspace in Austin Texas did something very similar to this in setting up their first locations around local maker interests. There are many different opportunities to meet like-minded makers around the world (http://www.scoop.it/t/maker-stuff) and you should take every chance you get to visit local makerspaces and hardware hacker groups when you travel.
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Mat P

Project Help  - 
 
How do you share your projects? 
  I have started my own blog to post my projects but I have been wondering if I would be better off posting on instructables.com.  I want people to see my work and learn from it if they can as a way to give back.  I thought about posting on make's project page but it's down right now.  I don't have tons of time so I think I need to pick one of these:

1) here
2) make project page when it's back
3) your own web site
4) instructables.com 
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Brett Coulthard's profile photoKalani Hausman's profile photoSteve Spence's profile photo
4 comments
 
Blogs are great places to get started sharing with others. You can also post fully-formed ideas into repositories like Thingiverse (3D models for printing) or Instructables (almost anything) to share with others, but for preliminary work while you get the final Instructable ready the Blog is probably the best spot. And post links to your blog posts in social media sites like Google+, FaceBook, Twitter, etc. Sharing photos of both your successes and failures also helps others in their own maker projects, so Instagram, Flickr and Photobucket are also great places to link pics of your ongoing projects.
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Can someone please tell me if it's ok to bring a bag and Ipad to the NY maker faire?  I'm going in a few weeks and want to bring my bag to carry anything I buy.  Figured I would bring my ipad to take pictures.  I know some events don't like bag due to security.
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Sebastian Pendola's profile photoTroy Hicks's profile photoCharlie Corona's profile photo
3 comments
 
Backpacks are and iPads are perfectly fine
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