Let's Make Robots! | RobotShop


Vacuums the floors, navigates through the room with an optimized algorithm. Pays attention to edges and corners to clean well.

Hey guys, its me again.
This is the third project I submit here.
Vacuuminator is a (obviously) vacuum cleaning robot. It is quite similar to a roomba. I have this problem about not buying robots if I can build one. As you would expect from a guy like me (and you) I don't clean much. I needed something to do that for me.

Therefore, I built vacuuminator (and made him clean the mess I've made while building it.)
Unlike the other projects I have posted, this was a personal one, although Jim (my partner from Botdev duo) helped on coming up with the circular movement algorithm which is similar to Roomba.

It uses 2 gear motors, from solarbotics
A boarduino
A mini servo for the neck
A sharp IR range finder to track stuff
A handheld vacuum cleaner
Hull of a broken roventa vacuum cleaner (something like this: http://webdenal.s3.amazonaws.com/catalog_167/463423_167.jpg )
6x D size rechargable hardcore batteries to power up the vacuum cleaner
8x AA size rechargable batteries for the logic
A touch sensor in front, made from 3 buttons + plastic sheet
A home-made wheel+encoder to be sure the robot is moving (in case it gets itself in a situation that can't be detected by the IR sensor and the touch sensor, like cables and stuff)

As said before, I made this to not to buy a Roomba. So, to make it logical, I kept it cheap. Most of the stuff was scavanged. The total cost was around $55 (most costly stuff was the chargers and the batteries) If you watch the video, you can see that the robot can actively track furnitures etc to focus on the edges (where the dirt mostly accumulate).

At the moment it is charged manually by 2 chargers (via 2 sockets in front of the robot), but I plan to add a dock for it to charge itself when its done.
The robot was featured in one of my favorite robotics shop, solarbotics blog. (can't find the link, I think they switched to a new blog format and its gone :/ if anyone can find it, it would be very welcomed)

I have nothing else coming to my mind to say about this one, if you have any questions I would love to answer them in details.

Finally, some extra photos from development (click to enlarge):


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he he, you have already beaten Roomba, since its not a real vacuum cleaner, but only an automated sweeper. The only vacuum you find in those bots, are the vacuum, to get the sweeped dust into the dust container on top of the brushes.

Nice project. Will follow closely. :)


Didn't know that! :) That is nice to hear. Thanks 

I may have to build one of these. How long does it run on a full charge?

The D size battery pack does a great job about that. Runtime was around 3-4 hours on full charge if I remember right.
(Did the runtime test when I first built it, its an old project and I don't remember it precisely, since it cleans the whole living room under an hour and I charge it afterwards) 


Good to have a useful robot that helps you to keep a clean home. Nice work.

How does this robot handle the dirt/dust that is sucked in? Suck it into a bag?

Well, I have modded a handheld vacuum cleaner, it has a nice container to keep the dust. (can be seen in one of the development photos).
Top case of the robot can be detached pretty easily to be able to reach the container. You need to empty it once every 6-7 run.

Thanks for the nice comment :) 

Dirt there. :)

That is one cool robot!