It’s been some time since an Astromech related post hasn’t it?

After a mad dash to get R2 ambulatory for October, Halloween has come and gone and we are now in November! Time flies.

I thought it would only be appropriate for R2 to take some of his first steps at the Children’s Museum of Acadiana, seeing as this is where I did my first troop with the 501st (well, sort of…). Unfortunately, the turnout last year was not favorable to host the event on Halloween day.

So, I’ll be getting those bones off and start re-skinning.

Things that were added since LACC’18 :

  1. Feet (obviously).
    This proved to be a bit of a challenge due to the fact that I am combining two existing designs; Barton Gilley‘s Rotocast Resin Legs (many many thanks, man!) with the old Senna/Franco Ankles. So far, I am not seeing any problems with this combination. In fact, I can’t imagine how I could transport R2 with any other method, –they’re just so light compared to wood.
  2. Moving arms.
    I was able to inject some custom code into DanF’s P.A.D.A.W.A.N. setup. He had purposefully left several possible button combinations empty for users to add previously unthought of features.
  3. Responsive Lights.
    This was a little tricky, but I had tested I long before even mounting the Teeces lighting subsystem. Curious Marc left handles to the old JAWALITE syntax in his revised code. Using them, having the main Arduino communicate with the one in the dome was accomplished with just one wire (excluding common ground).
  4.  Parallel battery supply.
    It became obvious at LACC’18 that just one 12v SLA battery wouldn’t cut it for R2 to function for any satisfactory amount of time. Over there he was legless and lasted for about four hours; add the 100W that the motors draw to and those four hours are decimated. I’ve yet to see how long this setup will last.

Further improvements will need to be made to the wiring of the droid. One important thing I left out was the fuse-box! While time consuming, I should be able to get this done without ripping up my existing work.

For R&D I have invested in Vruzend’s new DIY 18650 battery building kit in hopes of getting lithium technology safely implemented in the future.