There is an extensive array of maker tools such as the Raspberry Pi and Nvidia Jetson Nano for robotics projects. Nonetheless, Arduino Uno microcontroller units (MCUs) are arguably the best for robotic kits. Our article will cover the key characteristics of Arduino boards that make them ideal for robotics projects. Additionally, we will explore the requirements of building an Arduino robot kit, among other vital details.
Why Should You Get an Arduino Robotics Kit?
You may opt to go for a DIY Arduino-powered robot. Nonetheless, for a beginner, the design and creation procedure of such a robot from scratch can be quite daunting. Hence, an Arduino robot kit is far more rewarding for beginners. Among its other key upsides include the following:
- It's the best option for beginners with no experience in building.
- Also, it is relatively affordable and easily accessible.
- Thirdly, such a kit is well documented and thus easy to use.
What Do You Need to Build an Arduino Robot?
The number of hardware components you require will depend on your type of mobile robot and budget. All in all, here are the basic electronic components for this project:
- An Arduino Uno board
- A robotic platform or Vehicle kit
- A motor driver
- Motor wheels
- An ultrasonic distance sensor
- One USB cable
- Wheel motors
- Connectivity modules such as the Arduino robot Bluetooth slaves.
As mentioned earlier, these are the minimal requirements for a simple Arduino robot. Hence, for a more sophisticated project, you may require additional parts.
The Best Ranking Arduino Kits for Beginners
Below are some of the top Arduino kits for newbies:
Elegoo Project Smart Robot Car Kit
It is an Arduino-compatible robocar kit used primarily by beginners and kids. It features an easy-to-follow assembly tutorial. Besides, it's a 24-module package with the following key features:
- It's a STEM educational kit that provides an integrated solution to aid robotic learning
- Also, it features an infrared remote control and can work on iOS and Android operating systems
- Thirdly, it's capable of mobile and tracking control.
- Furthermore, it has rechargeable batteries and a minimalistic design
- Also, it possesses an obstacle avoidance system and a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty
- Additionally, it features an XH2.54 port making the module easy to assemble with minimal errors.
- Lastly, it's for kids at least 12 years old and has a detailed tutorial CD for ease of use.
Makeblock Educational Robot Kit
It is an improved version of the kit mentioned above. Hence, it features additional properties such as a 3-in-1 robot. Besides, you can code it via numerous functions, making it quite a fun coding tool for kids.
Assembling it is also relatively straightforward. Besides, it features an Arduino Mega 2560 compatible- Me Auriga Board.
Additionally, with the board, you can add new features, but it has no warranty. Also, another downside is that it lacks a dedicated interface; hence, you need an Arduino Mega 2560 IDE for use and development.
Ubtech Jimu Robot Astrobot Series: Cosmos Kit
You can enable this kit via a mobile application, and it's a handy STEM Learning coding and educational tool. Among its outstanding features includes the following:
- It is an aggregation of 384 parts, including LED lights and servo motors.
- Also, you can connect the server to a Bluetooth speaker.
- Thirdly, it has a Blockly coding platform for simplified coding and features an award-winning design.
- Using the Record Play feature, pose, or PRP function, you can also program it for custom functions.
- It can be used by kids 8-12 years old.
Osoyoos Robot Car Starter Kit
This DIY robot is specifically the best fit for an Arduino UNO R3 chip. Hence, you can control it either from iOs or Android. Besides, the high-quality robot has a wide range of functionalities. In addition, it is cheap and easy to build into a robot.
Also, you can easily modify it for driving via WiFi control, as a battle robot, and imitation driving. Moreover, the robot is useful for line tracking, detection, and preventing collisions. In addition, while it is a high-quality, pre-built robotic vehicle, it remains beginner-friendly.
Lastly, the durable design kit runs on two rechargeable batteries (9V rating for each) and has IR remote control.
All in all, despite the aforementioned apparent upsides, the kit doesn't have a warranty.
Lewansoul Robotic Arm Kit
Unlike the movable full robot kits we've covered before, this is a robot Arm type of kit. Among its key outstanding features include the following:
- It features a highly precise movement, and it's also budget-friendly.
- The arm kit also has a detailed tutorial for easy assembly and use.
- Also, like the other kits, it's a STEM-based robot, thus useful for learning by kids 8 years and above.
- Fourthly, its robotic arm structural design enables a variety of movement options.
- Further, it features a 5-axis rotation breadth and is the best fit for simple and complex operations.
Still, it has apparent disadvantages that include the following:
- It is not retailed with a battery and also lacks a warranty.
- Secondly, it is only useful for one function, given that it lacks wheels.
Elegoo Penguin Bot Biped Robot Kit
After complete assembly, it is similar in appearance to a penguin. Also, like the rest on this list, it is a STEM-learning kit suited for hobbyist adults and beginner kids. Its features include:
- It has a simplified tutorial, thus making it easy for kids and inexperienced robot hobbyists to use. It also features a tutorial CD to aid the customization process further.
- Secondly, you can control the accessible learning tool via Bluetooth.
- Thirdly, it has a durable design with six additional face covers to aid customization.
- It also includes additional parts and a magnetic screwdriver for improved functionality.
- Additionally, it has a high rating and features such as an auto-follow function.
All, in all, with the device, you'll have to do with downsides like no warranty. Also, it lacks advanced customization features.
Freenode Quadruped Robot Kit
The spider-like kit runs on an Arduino Raspberry Pi type of Processing board. Also, for DIY hobbyists, it is one of the most exciting kits to code from scratch. Further, you can easily control it via wireless remote control. Besides, you may opt to control it on your Android device or Windows PC.
Also, unlike the others, which move on wheels, it is a quadrapod that operates on four legs. Further, it features additional special tools such as spanners and magnetic screwdrivers. Lastly, you can reprogram and repurpose it to your liking.
DIY Ideas To Enhance Your Arduino Robot Kit Device Even Further
After getting acclimatized to using robot kits, there are several DIY ideas you might consider trying out. They include:
Use different types of sensors.
Your robot kit will probably come with a simple sensor kit, such as a light sensor. Nonetheless, you might consider adding additional sensors, such as a pressure sensor. You might also consider adding floor sensors and edge detection sensors. Afterward, you can check if the robot is at its maximum carrying capacity.
Use multiple robots simultaneously.
You can opt to create a simple robot competition pitying, say, a legged robot and a wheeled robot. Alternatively, you may go for a scientific approach, such as comparing the functionality of various robots. You can take a temperature or take pictures using multiple robots and compare the performances.
Combining a robot with a drone
Combine a drone with a robotic kit and try some remote control functions like landing it on a treehouse.
Buying Guide for Arduino Robot Kits
When shopping for robot kits, there are several vital things you need to consider.
Price of the Kit
You should go for the kit within your budget range and deliver your desired functionality.
It is a flagship feature of modern electronic devices. Thus, when choosing a robot kit, make sure it is smart navigation-enabled. Such a kit will enable control without necessarily being within its range. However, note that smark navigation kits are relatively pricier than the others.
Settle for a device that is easy to use. Otherwise, a complicated device will give you control problems.
Additional components of the kit
Based on the kind of project you want to undertake, consider the additional components of the kit. Also, check its weight, especially if your project requires carrying heavy tasks. Nonetheless, while there's a notion that heavy-weighted kits are not effective, this is not true.
As we have just seen, robot kits are handy tools for many robotics projects. Also, we've listed several key kits for beginners, each with a variety of different features. If you are a DIY hobbyist keen on learning the basics of programming, the above guide should be hugely helpful. Lastly, if you have any queries on the topic, reach out.