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I've been very busy the last weeks and didn't have the time to write you my updates on building the container warehouse. Fortunately I did have the time to work on it.

I needed to redesign some parts:

  1. The part that takes care of the platform horizontal movement. Instead of a worm gear that slides along the long axle, I use the 11955 gear (Technic gear 8 tooth no friction).

    96c771ec77057c6ac34408a4c105f12e.jpg
  2. The platform rollers. The previous version was not strong enough, and that resulted in a bad connection to the gears of the storage box. And that resulted in the container being not moved correctly to the storage box.

The problems seem to be solved, needs some duration testing. In the video below you see one of the first test runs.

 

In the video, you see only half of the complete warehouse. The complete warehouse will consist of two stacker cranes. Both stacker cranes can access the middle storage boxes (at the left in the video) and one of the outside storages.

What has been finished building, has been put together and that looks like this:

Large Candy Warehouse, controlled by Lego Mindstorms

Large Candy Warehouse, controlled by Lego Mindstorms

 

Enjoy, Hans

Edited by Hanso

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23 hours ago, jotta93 said:

This thing is becoming really massive ... and really interesting as well! :thumbup:

Thanks, jotta93. Always nice to get these compliments.

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When the containers-with-candies leave the automatic sorter (see article here), the containers need to be stored at the candy warehouse. In the photo below, you see in the bottom-right the location where the automatic candy sorter will be connected to. From this point, called the supply belt, the warehouse takes over to store the containers.

43087324062_e74fb17d87_c.jpg

 

When a candy is requested by the visitor, the warehouse will retrieve a container in the requested color from the storage boxes and deliver it to this location, called the delivery belt. This is the location where the delta crane (see article here) will be connected to and where the warehouse hands over the responsibility.

43144240251_aac1b0346c_c.jpg

 

A short video with the working supply belt and delivery belt, can be watched on Youtube:

 

Enjoy,
Hans

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I found this project on Youtube as I was looking for a fully automated warehouse made of Lego. There're several ones, but this one is the best from my point of view. Would love to get in contact with Hans to ask him some questions. Need some posts to activate my message box first :hmpf_bad:

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On 10/15/2018 at 3:10 PM, xp10r3r said:

I found this project on Youtube as I was looking for a fully automated warehouse made of Lego. There're several ones, but this one is the best from my point of view. Would love to get in contact with Hans to ask him some questions. Need some posts to activate my message box first :hmpf_bad:

Hi xp10r3r,

Thank you for the compliment.

You can ask questions at this board or if you leave your email address, I wil contact you.

 

Kind regards,

Hans

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Hi Hanso,

thanks for your reply. It's that post away from having 10 meaningful ones to be able to use the message board. So, I'll write you a PM when I've some time later tonight.

Cheers

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11 minutes ago, xp10r3r said:

Hi Hanso,

thanks for your reply. It's that post away from having 10 meaningful ones to be able to use the message board. So, I'll write you a PM when I've some time later tonight.

Cheers

How about having the chat in here, so we can all learn something?

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14 hours ago, Jim said:

How about having the chat in here, so we can all learn something?

For me, that is perfectly fine (even better). But I understand from xp10r3r that (s)he is not able to post. Although (s)he can use the forum, so don't know what (s)he exactly means.

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He means that he can only send PM’s when he has reached 10 posts. But PM isn’t necessary. Just post the questions here @xp10r3r :thumbup: 

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Ah, ok. Indeed, just post the questions at this forum and I will try to answer them.

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I got a PM from xp10r3r with the questions. It was ok for him to post the questions here as well, to share the answers with the community.

The questions I received:

Quote

 

  1. When did you start building it? And how long did it take you by now?
  2. Is it purely working on EV3? Or are you using different languages too?
  3. Which modelling tool for digital brick modelling are you using?
  4. Which books and sources could you recommend to learn more about and finally build an own warehouse?

Basically, the question is what I've to do and learn to create a fully automated warehouse like yours?

 

My answers:

  1. My first warehouse post goes back to 15 July 2017. So somewhere around that date, I started building. I have not been working continuously on the warehouse. I estimate that I have worked on it ~ 100 hours until finishing. Maybe a bit less, maybe a bit more. But this is a good estimate. The only thing I still need to do, is finish programming it. That will be done in the next few weeks, since we are integrating the whole stuff now.
  2. We use a decentralized software architecture. Meaning that each seperate system (eg. the crane, the warehouse, the train) should handle intelligent commands. For example, the warehouse crane receives a command from the PC application 'store container to location (1, 3, 4)', then the crane will autonomously execute this command. So it needs to pick up the container, move to the correct position and store it into the correct side of the warehouse. All the seperate systems are programmed in the standard EV3 programming language. The PC application is written in C#. You can read more at our blog siouxnetontrack.wordpress.com.
  3. I always use LDD (Lego Digital Designer). It has it flaws, but it is easy to learn and it is good enough for what I need.
  4. With respect t the books and sources: I used to be a software engineer in the past. With that background, learning the EV3 programming language is rather easy since you know that you need loops, if-then's, etc. Once I found out that it was possible to connect a NXT brick to a PC, it was even more fun. The combination of PC and EV3 made it possible to build more complex systems, and that resulted later in Sioux.NET on Track: making a large system with a PC and lots of EV3's. Learning from eachother makes the learning curve more steep, so the fact that you're now looking at the Forum is also a good source :-).

Hope this helps.

Best regards, Hans

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@Hanso Would you be interested to create a separate topic for discussing the EV3 to PC communication? Especially multiple/lots of EV3's. You could start the forum with [POC] as in Proof of Concept if you will actually show an implementation. Otherwise, it would be great if you could simply explain the theory.

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3 hours ago, Jim said:

@Hanso Would you be interested to create a separate topic for discussing the EV3 to PC communication? Especially multiple/lots of EV3's. You could start the forum with [POC] as in Proof of Concept if you will actually show an implementation. Otherwise, it would be great if you could simply explain the theory.

Would love to do that, but I don't have the time. Too many projects in parallel. Really busy at work now, working on the extension set of the soccer robot and of course, finish the warehouse .... maybe another time. In the meantime, you can find some background and code at our blog: siouxnetontrack.wordpress.com.

-- Hans

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12 hours ago, Hanso said:

Would love to do that, but I don't have the time. Too many projects in parallel. Really busy at work now, working on the extension set of the soccer robot and of course, finish the warehouse .... maybe another time. In the meantime, you can find some background and code at our blog: siouxnetontrack.wordpress.com.

-- Hans

No worries. I totally get that. I'm happy that you are around to answer questions.

I will take a look at the code and maybe I will use some of it in a post/poc of myself (of course with proper credits).

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Thank you for taking your time to answer my questions in detail. I appreciate it.

Cheers

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195.jpeg

If you want to see the finished and working warehouse, please visit us and take a look at the completed and working train layout. The demo is given in the Lego store of Toypro, you're welcome on Friday December 28th between 10:00 and 17:00 hours.

More information can be found here (available in Dutch only).

Regards,
Hans

 

Edited by Hanso

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Too bad Nederweert is not around the corner for me.

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A small video of the demo can be viewed on Youtube:

 

 

Happy New Year!

Regards,
Hans

Edited by Hanso

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The stacker crane 'counts' with a touch sensor its horizontal position. Important for this, is to have a home position so the EV3 'knows' where it is at startup.

In the last version,this was done with another touch sensor, see picture below:

41887749255_c19c6a4fdf_c.jpg

 

This single sensor was only able to detect one home position. Because of all the other needed sensors, there EV3 didn't have a free sensor port to add another touch sensor on the other side to detect the opposite home position. Therefore, I added a lever to made it possible to detect the home position both on the left and right side with only one touch sensor: 39661084613_e1aeec437a_c.jpg

46573634622_07f6ab316c_c.jpg

 

And a video to see how the double home positioning works in a test setup:

 

However, introducing this double home positioning lever resulted in a new problem: at startup, if the touch sensor is pressed, the EV3 cannot determine if it is on the left or right home position. Therefore, it cannot determine in what direction it can start moving.

This problem will be solved by using the sensor that is responsible for the horizontal positioning of the stacker crane. If I lower the black rail in the middle at one home position, the combination of the two sensors makes the position of the stacker crane unique:

1) Home Position sensor pressed, Horizontal Position sensor pressed = LEFT HOME
2) Home Position sensor pressed, Horizontal Position sensor released = RIGHT HOME
3) Home Position sensor released, Horizontal Position sensor pressed = SOMEWHERE IN BETWEEN
4) Home Position sensor released, Horizontal Position sensor released = SOMEWHERE IN BETWEEN

If the stacker crane is 'somewhere in between', it doesn't matter in what direction it will start. It just needs to go to left or right to find one of the two home positions.

 

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I've started to draw the stacker crane in LDD and then render it with Stud.io. The first picture shows the roller platform.

40653142683_bd4f4e8ff5_c.jpg

 

The second part (and largest) is the base of the stacker crane. I will post updates, so can you also see how the stacker crane looks from the inside.

32691639647_b7de765e54_c.jpg

46718581435_1cc4b07344_c.jpg

32691639507_94091d7cd4_c.jpg

46718581285_685562aef6_c.jpg

46718678615_daa34095d6_c.jpg

Enjoy,
Hans

Edited by Hanso

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