This last weekend, I decided to do a proof-of-concept with R2’s control electronics. I wanted to be sure the radio transmitter, receiver, and motor controllers not only functioned, but functioned the way I think they should.
I had an old Kenner radio controlled R2 given to me a few years ago, but it didn’t work. At one point, I took it apart to fix it (I did go to school for electronics after all) but the electronics were in pretty bad shape. Bad capacitors, cold solder joints, etc. I decided this would make a perfect “proof-of-concept” test, since the basic layout is the same: 1 motor in each foot, and 1 in the dome.
I was almost able to fit all of the electronics for the full-size R2 into the battery compartment of the little R2. What was left (batteries) I simply taped to him temporarily. After a little tweaking of dip switches on the speed controllers, I was able to control the little R2 exactly the way I suspected it would work. Here’s a little video of the test:
The only issue I had was with the cheap plastic gears in the toy – they kept seizing up. With the exception of that, the control system works flawlessly!
On Saturday, I started mounting the electronics on a piece of plexiglass to mount inside R2. Here’s a photo with the radio receiver, speed controllers, and connection points mounted. I’m waiting for a fuse box to arrive to complete this. I plan to put a fuse inline with each motor, so that if a motor shorts out or overloads, it will blow the fuse and not the speed controller (they ain’t cheap!)