Category Archives: robots

Robotics Weekend Workshop for Girls Grades 8 – 12

CRASH Member Craig and his FTC robotics team are looking for new recruits for the Rock N Roll Robots Weekend Summer Workshop!

Robotics Weekend Workshop for Girls Grades 8 – 12

The Rock N’ Robots Summer Workshop is an overnight program created and run by current members of the Rock N’ Roll Robots Girl Scouts robotics team, with help from team parents and mentors from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The camp is designed to prepare girls to compete in the FIRST Tech Challenge robotics tournament. (Although participants are not required to join a robotics team.)

Robotics Weekend Workshop for Girls Grades 8 – 12 Robotics Weekend Workshop for Girls Grades 8 – 12


  • Upon arrival, campers will be organized into teams. Over the course of their weekend, each team will build and program a robot to compete in a mini-tournament on Sunday afternoon.
  • As part of this process, campers will receive instruction in the technical skills necessary to build a robot; like design, construction, and programming. In addition, campers will be introduced to other important skills like team building, fundraising, public outreach, and competition strategy.
  • But it’s not all hard work. This camp is planned by Girl Scouts who love to hang out and have a good time! Workshops will be mixed with team building activities, a movie night, and of course, s’mores around the campfire.
  • Family and friends are invited to join us at 3pm on Sunday to watch the tournament and cheer for their favorite robot.

For more information, check out the flyer!

Razorbots Class!

We are thrilled to announce our Razorbots class August 10-17! Razorbots are small, simple R/C robots that wield razorblades against one another to pop their opponent’s balloon. They’re good fun even for the most seasoned roboticist and a great entry point for anybody who wants to learn about robotics, electronics, or DIY tech in general. Sign up here!

The class will take place over 2 sessions: The first, on Sunday August 10 2pm-4pm, will be the introduction and kickoff. A classroom discussion will be held to explain tech stuff, followed by distribution of components and a build party. You’ll then have the rest of the week to finish your robot at your own pace using the tools and resources available at Hive76. The second session will be held on the following Sunday, August 17, again at 2pm. This is where your Razorbot will prove its mettle against all others and battle for the coveted Inaugral Razorbot Cup! Both classes are open to continue well past 4pm!

The class cost is $150 per kit (more than one person is welcome to share a kit; bring friends and split the cost! Bring the family!)

  • 2.4GHZ 4-Channel Radio System
  • Servo mixer
  • 2 continuous rotation servos + wheels for drive system
  • 2 sub-micro servos for weapon arms
  • 2 razorblades
  • 1 battery holder
  • AA batteries for robot + radio
  • 36″ of 1/4″ square wooden dowel rod
  • 6″ x 6″ square fiberboard

We will be supplying additional materials such as fishing line, hot glue, balloons and painters tape. We will be following a constricted rule set to keep everybody on an even playing field. You’ll have to rely on cunning, ingenuity, and driving skill to win. The rules are those we’ve been following at Hive76 with our prototype Razorbots:

“You may only use what’s in your kit, plus hot glue. Absolutely no outside materials or fasteners. Your fiberboard base must remain a 6″ square. At the start of the match, your entire robot must fit within the 6″ square, drive wheels excluded. Your balloon must be mounted dead center on your bot. It may only be as high as if it were sitting on the battery pack. ‘Defensive’ structures are not allowed. You may not build a wooden framework to shelter your balloon. All construction must be offensive. You must construct feet under your 6″ square to ensure that it remains vaguely level.

Two robots, one tabletop arena. Last robot to have its balloon intact is the winner.”

Of course, rules may be bent as the class organizer sees fit.

At the completion of this class, not only will you have a one-of-a-kind razor toothed robot, but also the know-how to move onto more sophisticated robotics projects. Plus, all the components in the kits can be reused and reconfigured any number of ways in a variety of R/C and robotics projects.

Due to lead time on components, the signup deadline is FRIDAY JULY 11
Class reservations:

What? Robots armed with flailing razor blades attempt to pop their opponent’s balloon.
When? Sundays August 10th + 17th 2pm-4pm. Deadline to sign up is Friday, July 11.
How? Make a reservation at
Who? All ages! Minors under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Where? Hive76 – 915 Spring Garden Suite #519, Philadelphia, PA 19123
How much? $150

About the instructor: Daniel Provenzano is Hive76′s resident roboticist. With over ten years experience building fighting robots, he also holds a BS Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University. Currently he works as a civilian engineer for the US Navy specializing in machinery acoustics. His most recent robotics project can be found here.

Arduino / xDuino open hack

04/20/2014 14:30
04/20/2014 14:30
04/20/2014 14:30
04/20/2014 14:30
Event Type: 

Learn how to use an Arduino micro controller platform to sense the world and control stuff. In the open hack, we will not have a formal lesson. However, if it is your first time, please let me know, and I will give you the basic introduction.
At open hack, bring your arduino projects and ideas. Lets work together on our projects.
This is not limited to Arduino. Feel free to try any micro. Arduino frameworks include:

Member Price: 
Non-Member Price: 


Robbie is safely enclosed!

Finished room!

Whew.  This project was a D-O-O-O-ZY!  We needed to enclose our giant industrial arm so he can’t run away and join the robot circus…

Well…maybe not for THAT reason, but when we start cutting stuff with this robot, we need to keep spectators out of his reach and make sure that if a cutting bit does break, it doesn’t go flying out into the shop and maim someone.

This entire project was the work of several people and really shows why the Milwaukee Makerspace is a great place to build stuff/hang out with friends/play with power tools, etc…


Step 1: Design it!  I used Solidworks and modeled each and every piece of wood that went into this project.

SW screen capture

Step 2: get the wood!  We made multiple trips to Home Depot, which thankfully is only 5 minutes away and we had great weather during the whole building process.  I love having a truck!  Fortune also shined upon me, as we had a new member join up right before I started this project, Jake R., and his help in building the wall was immeasurable.

Get the wood!

Step 3: Bolt the wood to the floor so we know where to put the wall, and then build some framing!

  4 - put in windows

Step 4: Put in the windows, drywall paneling and metal wainscoting.  We were very lucky to get seven pieces of slightly-smoked Lexan from one of our members, Jason H.  We also cut small holes in the ceiling tiles and ran 4 braces up to the metal ceiling trusses above.  This enclosure is ROCK-solid stable!  Thanks to Tony W. and Jim R. for helping with that!

When I went to Home Depot, I thought my truck could handle a 48″x 120″ sheet of drywall.  Not so much… one of their employees helped me split 10 sheets of drywall in half, in the parking lot…so I would later find out that I did not have drywall tall enough for the wall corner.  Hence the need for more “framing” so I could use smaller pieces.

10 - outer framing

The large cabinet that powers the robot arm is right next to the enclosure; I placed it outside to keep it away from foam & wood shavings.  However, we will need to have the programming pendant next to the machine every now and then….hence the need for 2 small pass-thru doors next to the cabinet.

6 - hole for mini-door

11 - outer door installed











I used doweling to help hold the door frame components together…..probably not needed, but it ensures a STRONG door!

16 - drilling door frames  15 - door framing 1

Again, hooooray for the Makerspace and all its tools! We have several LONG pipe clamps that came in VERY handy for gluing the door frame pieces together.

17 - frame glued up - 1

Here’s the outside of the enclosure.  The big metal control cabinet will go right here, hence the framed “mouse hole” in the lower right corner so we can pass the cables through from the cabinet to the robot arm.

13 - outer door and mouse hole

The same area viewed from inside the enclosure.

14 - inner door and mouse hole

Here’s the ginormous sliding door.  It’s mounted on a barn-door track-rail and supported on the bottom by two custom-made wheel brackets.

23 - finished door on track

Here’s how I made the wheel brackets.  I got two lawnmower-style wheels and bearings from Tom G., then Tom K. enlarged the center holes on the wheels on his Bridgeport mill so I could use bearings for smoother action.

18 - wheels in slot - 1

I figured on four carriage bolts for a super-strong connection to the door frame.

19 - wheel assembly done

This is the track and wheel bogies that hold the sliding door to the wall.

22 - wheels and track

Bolting the brackets onto the door was “fun”…I forgot that the very bottom of the door framing is two horizontal pieces, so the very bottom bolt had to go.  ’DOH!

21 - inside door frame 1

Here’s the final, assembled view.  You can see the robot’s control cabinet in the lower right corner.

Now that the fabrication is complete, we’re working on decorative ideas for all that blank-looking drywall.

24 - finished room!

Whenever I look at this finished project it feels like to took several months to get it up, even though construction only lasted about 2-1/2 weeks.

Thanks to Jake R., Tom G., Tom K., Tony W., Jim R., and Bill W. for their assistance with this project!

Robbie is nearly weaponized….

router clamp in foam 2I am nearly done with a custom bracket for my Hitachi router that I will mount onto the end of our Kuka industrial robot arm.  I cut everything out in foam first to check  out the whole scheme and save wear and tear on the cutting bit.

flange for RobbieThe software chain I used to accomplish this was lengthy.  I designed all of these pieces in 3D in Solidworks, created a Solidworks 2D drawing, saved that as an AutoCAD drawing, brought that drawing into Vectric’s Aspire, then created machine code that the Makerspace CNC router used to cut the pieces from a sheet of foam.

finished clamp

Finally, once I was satisfied that everything would cut correctly, I switched to 3/4″ thick Baltic Birch plywood.  This is a “nicer” grade of plywood than the stuff that is used in day-to-day building construction work.  This wood is stronger by virtue of a greater number of plies, and it also looks nicer.  I happened to have a sheet left-over from a previous project, so it was all good!

plywood sheet

Photography Area Improvements!

We’ve had a dedicated photography area at the Makerspace since moving to our new building in January.  However, the lighting was powerful and direct, which resulted in some pretty exciting shadows.  Today, I set up four 400 watt equivalent, 105 watt (somewhat) compact florescent lights on stands that each have shoot through umbrella diffusers.  Check them out in room just off the craft lab.


Now we can take photos that aren’t a nightmere of shadows and hot spots!  Like this teaser photo of FIDO, shown below.  Stay tuned for more info on him!


Hello Kuka!

Kuka KR 30

We recently got an email from a guy who runs a manufacturing company in the Milwaukee area. He said he had some extra equipment he was looking to donate, including a welder, and some wire, and some scrap steel, and oh yeah, a Kuka KR 30 Industrial Robot!!!

We said, sure, we’ll come and pick it up. ;)

To be fair, he did mention it “needs work” but we’ve already assembled a team of members interested in getting this thing up and running. We’re hoping that with the varied experience our members possess, from electronics to industrial controls to robotics and general hacking and tinkering, we’ll get this thing swinging around in no time.

And what will we do with it? Well, besides the silly suggestions of arm wresting, can crushing, and free high-fives at the next Art Jamboree, there’s been talk of multi-axis milling, 3D printing, and hey, just being awesome with a giant industrial robot arm!

Before we even think of firing it up we’ll be mounting it securely to the floor and building a safety cage. The last thing we want to do is reduce our membership due to an “accident” with the giant industrial robot arm!

Of course, until it’s up and running, it’s available for amusing photo opportunities. ;)


Mark Haygood’s robot HEX made CNN

We are so proud of his accomplishment. If you haven’t read the article, click here.  This is just the beginning of the press he has gotten lately. Way to go Mark!  After so many years finally getting the press you deserve!

The post Mark Haygood’s robot HEX made CNN appeared first on Baltimore Hackerspace.

Robot Bug Workshop and Race on 15 June

Vibrobug Red Ant

The Red Ant Vibrobug, one of the bugs that can be made at the workshop.

Build your own robot bug and then race it against others in this workshop for children and adults on Saturday, 15 June.

The small robot is a great way to learn how to solder, with only six points to solder, a coin cell power board and pre-cut perspex. The bug then vibrates across a smooth surface, giving you a creepy crawling bug that’s fun for all ages.

Once everyone has built and personalised their bugs, there’ll be the Great Robot Race, where the owner of the best robot will win a unique one-off kit from Kitronik.

Run by Rob Haywood from Kitronik, the workshop will run from 10:00am to 12:00pm, and is for children aged 8 and over. Tickets cost £10. Adults must accompany all children, but if there just to supervise, adults are free.

To book your ticket, please visit the Eventbrite page.