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This lego GBC module uses the lego Mindstorms EV3 to power the module. It uses a robot arm style mechanism to lift the balls from the previous GBC module to the next one. It is quite reliable and has had almost no issues while I have been testing it. It is quite simple and small for a mindstorms GBC module but it is the first thing that I have ever made and programmed with it. (Do you recommend using the EV3 programming app or Python? I know Python quite well but have not tried using it for mindstorms before) I think it turned out ok for my first MOC using mindstorms, hope to make the next one much more interesting :)

Instructions.

Photos on Flicker.

 

 

Lego GBC Mindstorms Robot Arm Module PhotosLego GBC Mindstorms Robot Arm Module Photos

 

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Looks good,
It should be possible to adapt it for use with a Train GBC module with a position sensor when train car is in loading postion.

I have an EV3 set but have not got to grips with using it yet !

Are the programing steps available ?  

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17 hours ago, Doug72 said:

Looks good,
It should be possible to adapt it for use with a Train GBC module with a position sensor when train car is in loading postion.

I have an EV3 set but have not got to grips with using it yet !

Are the programing steps available ?  

Thanks! I think it would work well for loading a train GBC. Sorry for forgetting to upload the code, I will do that now. (Yes, I know my code style is not very good ;) Can't wait to see what you build with your EV3!

Robot Arm 1 Code

 

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Thanks for the programming code.

At the moment I have used your instructions to build the tower for raising and turning the arm to see how it could be adapted for GBC Train loading. I will use your input hopper with lifting gate.

Have yet to decide if use your rotating ball carrier box or use the existing train unit ball carrying hopper.

Probaly needs 2 or 3 trips to fill train the hopper with 15 or 30 balls which would be released by its own mechanical reverser.
Also a way to sense the train would be required to activate the loading & stop it as train leaves.

May be too heavy if try to carry 30 or 15 balls per trip, but would only need two functions for lift & swing the ball carrier

For my proposed build need to lift ball carrier up off the train unit by 2 or 3L. Then swing it round 180 degs & lower to base level to load the balls. Then reverse the movement back onto the train.

If it proves to be too heavy then use your rotating box to load the train.

Train to be released using a GBC reverser unit or use the small EV3 motor to drive the reverser instead of from the train car.

I have been trying on & off for some time now to achieve this mechanically with very limited success.

Think it will take a long time to build and if I get stuck with programming I will have to call on my son to help as he is a software engineer, who gave me the EV3 as a Xmas gift.

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16 hours ago, Doug72 said:

Thanks for the programming code.

At the moment I have used your instructions to build the tower for raising and turning the arm to see how it could be adapted for GBC Train loading. I will use your input hopper with lifting gate.

Have yet to decide if use your rotating ball carrier box or use the existing train unit ball carrying hopper.

Probaly needs 2 or 3 trips to fill train the hopper with 15 or 30 balls which would be released by its own mechanical reverser.
Also a way to sense the train would be required to activate the loading & stop it as train leaves.

May be too heavy if try to carry 30 or 15 balls per trip, but would only need two functions for lift & swing the ball carrier

For my proposed build need to lift ball carrier up off the train unit by 2 or 3L. Then swing it round 180 degs & lower to base level to load the balls. Then reverse the movement back onto the train.

If it proves to be too heavy then use your rotating box to load the train.

Train to be released using a GBC reverser unit or use the small EV3 motor to drive the reverser instead of from the train car.

I have been trying on & off for some time now to achieve this mechanically with very limited success.

Think it will take a long time to build and if I get stuck with programming I will have to call on my son to help as he is a software engineer, who gave me the EV3 as a Xmas gift.

That sounds so cool! I would love to see it when it is done! I think that the arm can handle more weight, especially if you add some kind of counter balance (or maybe use the small soft shock absorbers?) If it helps I have uploded the actual ev3 program here. (the link should work hopefully ;)

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, sawyer klegr said:

That sounds so cool! I would love to see it when it is done! I think that the arm can handle more weight, especially if you add some kind of counter balance (or maybe use the small soft shock absorbers?) If it helps I have uploded the actual ev3 program here. (the link should work hopefully ;)

Thanks, I can download the program file but cannot open it.

I am using Mac OS Catalina which is unable to open 32 bit files.  I will ask my son for help.

Busy sorting out all the parts required to build this, with some on order for the 8 x 6 technic frame with center hole.
I will build it on 28 X 52 baseplate ( non Lego ) but very usefull.

I will see if I can mod the tower and lifting arms to lift a train ball hopper with 15 or possible 30  balls !
I will test it using an M motor first.

One issue is that when the train arrives it will continue to run in order to activate the reverser trip to release the train when loaded.
This means syncronising the train with the EV3 module.

Thoughts are to disconnect the train drive to its train reverser and drive the reveser part using the small EV3 motor ( reverser to have 4 trip arms ).

Or use small EV3 motor to trip the train directly.

My current GBC Train Swing Up & Over module with supplementry motor,  is on hold as cannot syncronise it - possibly if learn how to use EV3 i could adapt it for EV3.

I think this will be a long term project.

P..S  My build will be multi coloured as limited stock of studded parts !

Edited by Doug72

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Posted (edited)

Have downloaded the Lego MindStorms Education file  which is 64 bit, opens OK just need to see if your link works OK for me, I expect not as your files are proably 32 bit.

I will use the block diagram to figure out the program.

Build update:- Main frame with two motors buit and starting on the rotating turret next.

Fits nicely on the base board.

Edited by Doug72

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Posted (edited)

Module built as per the intructions with some minor changes due it being built on a studded baseplate.

Had problems with the 2 x 2 angle plates falling off, so eliminated them and tied together the beams more securely a seen in photo.

49658268798_f82b835df4_z.jpg

Modification for use with Train GBC:

Original module output ramp removed and replaced by a GBC train dock reverser unit.
The ball bucket lifts high enough above the train ball hopper with the train either end on or at right angles - see photos.
Bucket can hold 15 balls so two trips required to meet 30 balls per minute.

Need to find a way to sense the train arriving & departing and a way to operate the train reverser trip in sync.

Now the hard part learning how to programe the EV3.

49658227353_73e3b31662_z.jpg

49659045307_af4624efc8_z.jpg

49658770576_3cff1e99e8_z.jpg

49658770551_fe7b1251f1_z.jpg

Edited by Doug72

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10 hours ago, Doug72 said:

Module built as per the intructions with some minor changes due it being built on a studded baseplate.

Had problems with the 2 x 2 angle plates falling off, so eliminated them and tied together the beams more securely a seen in photo.

49658268798_f82b835df4_z.jpg

Modification for use with Train GBC:

Original module output ramp removed and replaced by a GBC train dock reverser unit.
The ball bucket lifts high enough above the train ball hopper with the train either end on or at right angles - see photos.
Bucket can hold 15 balls so two trips required to meet 30 balls per minute.

Need to find a way to sense the train arriving & departing and a way to operate the train reverser trip in sync.

Now the hard part learning how to programe the EV3.

49658227353_73e3b31662_z.jpg

49659045307_af4624efc8_z.jpg

49658770576_3cff1e99e8_z.jpg

49658770551_fe7b1251f1_z.jpg

That looks so good! Can't wait to see it finished. Sorry that the program would not run for you, I am also very new to this whole EV3 programming thing. I assume you are going to use the color sensor to tell when the train arrives? (Your mod using the technic lift arms instead of the plates looks like a good idea, I used the plates because I did not want it to be able to rotate. I think your way looks a lot stronger) Good luck with the programming, that is my least favorite part of using mindstorms ;)

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Posted (edited)

Apple no longer support 32 bit files.

Re MindStorms.
Used it to build the 1st model in the EV3 instruction book but couldn’t figure out the programming.

I have taken a screen shot of your program and blown it up and will use that for the programming with help from my son hopefully.

Re Train Sensor:
I was thinking of using the touch sensor for train to start the program & then stop it as train departs. Thats assuming it can work as an on/off switch.

Also need to find a way start the train reverser once balls are loaded. could use a small EV3 motor to drive the train trip rotor direct.

49661730341_ffa853e2c9_z.jpg

I have GBC Train module that uses a PF switch to start a supplementry M motor to run the module which starts the M motor as train docks and stops as train leaves.
Train pushes a PF switch ON & a rubber band returns it to OFF, but unable to get it to syncronise with train reverser.

If get your module program working will try again with my stalled build.

PS: It will give me something to do while we over 70’s get locked down because of the CV19.

Edited by Doug72

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14 hours ago, Doug72 said:

Apple no longer support 32 bit files.

Re MindStorms.
Used it to build the 1st model in the EV3 instruction book but couldn’t figure out the programming.

I have taken a screen shot of your program and blown it up and will use that for the programming with help from my son hopefully.

Re Train Sensor:
I was thinking of using the touch sensor for train to start the program & then stop it as train departs. Thats assuming it can work as an on/off switch.

Also need to find a way start the train reverser once balls are loaded. could use a small EV3 motor to drive the train trip rotor direct.

49661730341_ffa853e2c9_z.jpg

I have GBC Train module that uses a PF switch to start a supplementry M motor to run the module which starts the M motor as train docks and stops as train leaves.
Train pushes a PF switch ON & a rubber band returns it to OFF, but unable to get it to syncronise with train reverser.

If get your module program working will try again with my stalled build.

PS: It will give me something to do while we over 70’s get locked down because of the CV19.

That looks like it is going great! Hope you can get the program working. You might be able to program the arm to push the PF switch on by lowering the arm on it, it could potentially save you a extra motor. 

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, Doug72 said:

Now downloaded the Home edition for EV3 and opens OK on Mac OS Catalina.

https://go.api.education.lego.com/v1/lms-scratch-retail#nourlrewrite

I like the click & drag way of building up the required program.

I will now try to replicate your program using your flow chart.

Can you run my program on your EV3 or will the software not even let you do that? You would not be able to edit the program easily but at least it would save you from having to program it again. Good luck with the programming ether way, can't wait to see it finished ;)

Edited by sawyer klegr

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, sawyer klegr said:

Can you run my program on your EV3 or will the software not even let you do that? You would not be able to edit the program easily but at least it would save you from having to program it again. Good luck with the programming ether way, can't wait to see it finished ;)

Downloaded the file to my desk top & the applications folder, file shows in application folder but is not highlighted so won't open.

Hopefully my son will be down on Mothers Day and can help.

Probably last visit for a few months as over 70's now advise to shun all contact with outside world !!!!!!!!!!

Good job I have a loads of Lego to play with.

One issue I have come across is using the train to activate the touch sensor.

The sensors internal spring pushes the train back a little bit releasing the switch slightly so not sure would work as an ON & OFF switch.

If can get EV3 running program OK will probably have to use the colour sensor instead 

Also probably will require another small EV3 motor to operate the train trip or devise a mechanical way instead,

Edited by Doug72

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Posted (edited)

What computer OS was the programme you provided made on. Windows or Mac.

If Mac is it running the latest Catalina OS ?
Tried all sorts to input the file onto the MindStorms programing page without success.

When I double click the file it opens Mindstorms OK and opens the START page.

Attempted to modify the tower lift to hold a GBC Train ball carrier but it is too heavy and over balances so will keep yours.

Thanks for your help

Doug

Edited by Doug72

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On 3/18/2020 at 9:44 PM, Doug72 said:

What computer OS was the programme you provided made on. Windows or Mac.

If Mac is it running the latest Catalina OS ?
Tried all sorts to input the file onto the MindStorms programing page without success.

When I double click the file it opens Mindstorms OK and opens the START page.

Attempted to modify the tower lift to hold a GBC Train ball carrier but it is too heavy and over balances so will keep yours.

Thanks for your help

Doug

I programmed it using windows 10, in theory it should not matter what OS it was programmed on, only if it is 32 or 64 bit (I think) I wonder if it could be a problem with Google drive not recognising the file format? Hope you can get it running, I think that it will look very cool if you can get it to load the train! (Is there any website that you know of that is “designed” for uploading EV3 programs to? That might help because if it is a problem with Google)

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Posted (edited)

Its not just 64 bit, its also the way the programe blocks are stacked. See my topic in Lego Mindstorms & Robots

The new EV3 Progamming connects the blocks vertically unlike the older 32 bit which connects blocks horizontally.

I have sorted out the mounting of the train dock OK but would need an extra medium motor to trip the reverser mechanism.

At the moment I have put on hold your Robot Arm until I can get to grips with how program blocks & their settings are put together as it requires a lot of complex syncronised movements of the arm..

============================================

I am rebuilding my previous several failed attempts at the GBC Train Crane module which has simpler movements and only requiring one movement at a time.

Raise ball carrier / traverse / lower to load balls.  //  Raise the loaded ball carrier / traverse / lower back onto train unit.

It will use two large motors for lift & traverse and the medium motor for the train release trip or use its on mechanical reverser if can sync it with the other movements.

Will keep my mind and hands busy during the current crisis.

==================================================

I think I will use EV3 for this GBC Train Swing Loader - mecanically it works fine but has proved impossible to syncronise.

Would only need one Large EV3 motor for swinging the arms and Medium Motor for the train release trip and would help with learning how to programe it.

49685942736_6e3cc8bcf4.jpgIMG_7502 by Doug Ridgway, on Flickr

 

Edited by Doug72

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On 3/22/2020 at 10:12 PM, Doug72 said:

Its not just 64 bit, its also the way the programe blocks are stacked. See my topic in Lego Mindstorms & Robots

The new EV3 Progamming connects the blocks vertically unlike the older 32 bit which connects blocks horizontally.

I have sorted out the mounting of the train dock OK but would need an extra medium motor to trip the reverser mechanism.

At the moment I have put on hold your Robot Arm until I can get to grips with how program blocks & their settings are put together as it requires a lot of complex syncronised movements of the arm..

============================================

I am rebuilding my previous several failed attempts at the GBC Train Crane module which has simpler movements and only requiring one movement at a time.

Raise ball carrier / traverse / lower to load balls.  //  Raise the loaded ball carrier / traverse / lower back onto train unit.

It will use two large motors for lift & traverse and the medium motor for the train release trip or use its on mechanical reverser if can sync it with the other movements.

Will keep my mind and hands busy during the current crisis.

==================================================

I think I will use EV3 for this GBC Train Swing Loader - mecanically it works fine but has proved impossible to syncronise.

Would only need one Large EV3 motor for swinging the arms and Medium Motor for the train release trip and would help with learning how to programe it.

49685942736_6e3cc8bcf4.jpgIMG_7502 by Doug Ridgway, on Flickr

 

That looks great! Sorry that I have been taking so long to reply, it has been quite crazy here over the last few days. Your new train module loos great, and more importantly like it will be very reliable. I hope you can figure out the mindstorms programming, I found it quite hard to get used to even though I can code using java/C#. It is meant to be simpler than real coding but at times I find it more confusing. Hopefully spike prime will be easier ;) I like your mechanism for keeping the bucket level using the large turntables. Is that red 40t gear like a normal one or is it similar to the red 8t gears that don't have friction? I have never seen them in red before. Also is your train exactly the same as Akiyuki's or is it a different design? if it is Akiyuki's that would be cool so you can use it with his other designs.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, sawyer klegr said:

That looks great! Sorry that I have been taking so long to reply, it has been quite crazy here over the last few days. Your new train module loos great, and more importantly like it will be very reliable. I hope you can figure out the mindstorms programming, I found it quite hard to get used to even though I can code using java/C#. It is meant to be simpler than real coding but at times I find it more confusing. Hopefully spike prime will be easier ;) I like your mechanism for keeping the bucket level using the large turntables. Is that red 40t gear like a normal one or is it similar to the red 8t gears that don't have friction? I have never seen them in red before. Also is your train exactly the same as Akiyuki's or is it a different design? if it is Akiyuki's that would be cool so you can use it with his other designs.

Same over here now we are on lock down but allowed out once a day for shopping or for excercise.
I cycle and did 20 miles around my area today, very warm & sunny. Roads very quiet and an errie silence.

The red 40T gears I ordered via Brickowl and have normal friction, think you can get them in green as well. Cost £1.50 each.
The train seen in the photo is based on the Akiyuki one with an M motor - I also have some modified with an L motor. It does connect OK with other GBC train modules.
Main probelm was getting the counter balance weight OK to allow 30 balls per transfer.

Re Swing Loaded took awhile to get it working OK and now works well mechanically when controlled by hand but had proved impossible to sync it with the train reverser.

Today I have put the three EV3 motors onto my rebuilt transfer module - see my post on the mindstorms forum about my query about EV3 Touch sensor.

49697050133_e8a1880354_z.jpg

I see if can use it to find out to program it and then try it on the swing loader, and replace the M motor which is currently used.& replace it with a large EV3 motot and use a Medium motor to drive the trip for releasing the train.
Only problem is train will continue to run to keep touch sensor engaged, but will not move or drive the reverser, until the trip activated and train departs.

 

Edited by Doug72

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22 hours ago, Doug72 said:

Same over here now we are on lock down but allowed out once a day for shopping or for excercise.
I cycle and did 20 miles around my area today, very warm & sunny. Roads very quiet and an errie silence.

The red 40T gears I ordered via Brickowl and have normal friction, think you can get them in green as well. Cost £1.50 each.
The train seen in the photo is based on the Akiyuki one with an M motor - I also have some modified with an L motor. It does connect OK with other GBC train modules.
Main probelm was getting the counter balance weight OK to allow 30 balls per transfer.

Re Swing Loaded took awhile to get it working OK and now works well mechanically when controlled by hand but had proved impossible to sync it with the train reverser.

Today I have put the three EV3 motors onto my rebuilt transfer module - see my post on the mindstorms forum about my query about EV3 Touch sensor.

49697050133_e8a1880354_z.jpg

I see if can use it to find out to program it and then try it on the swing loader, and replace the M motor which is currently used.& replace it with a large EV3 motot and use a Medium motor to drive the trip for releasing the train.
Only problem is train will continue to run to keep touch sensor engaged, but will not move or drive the reverser, until the trip activated and train departs.

 

That looks like a great design! It looks like it will be very reliable/accurate.You seem to have been able to get the mechanism quite small by using mindstorms instead of PF. I think that green 40t gears would be very interesting for building other non GBC MOCs like trees, Might have to get some ;) We are also not allowed out much here, only to go for walks/runs and to get food. Hopefully will not last to long.

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