ArduRoller - balanced car on pixhawk

I’ve been designing this robot for a while now, the goal is to have it recognize faces and say hello if it recognizes the person.

I’m using a pixhawk drone brain for the balancing part using ardupilot balance bot code to get it all working with minimal redevelopment. So, thanks a bunch for the project and all the awesome code and discussions that you guys have posted. I wouldn’t have been able to do it without you.

The reason why I am posting is that part of my design is to have a retractable “LEG” to come down and support the robot while it is in park mode. This will require the balancing to be turned on and off depending on whether the leg is down or up. Also, it will require the balance bot to fall in a particular direction when the leg is down and it wants to “Park”.

Does anyone have any suggestions on the best way to accomplish this using the existing code? I was thinking that a special mode could be created that would allow it to only fall in one direction, but my programming ability is perhaps not fully up to snuff to carry this off.

Any help would be awesome. Thanks!

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Hi @Ebin_Philip ,
first of all thanks a lot for your great job on the balancebots.

reading all the comments above I realized that at the beginning encoders were not mandatory( @rmackay9 ) but now I don’t find any references saying that.
so here is my question; Is it possible to build a balance bot without motor encoders, since the main feedback for the robot to stabilize is the pitch angle.

thanks in advance


Yes, I think it could work without wheel encoders especially if you’re only planning to use Manual mode… but even Acro and other modes would probably work as long as the vehicle has a GPS.

By the way, you’ll definitely want to use the upcoming Rover-4.3.0-beta5 which includes pitch control improvements.

By the way another balancebot user is @Webillo.

thanks @rmackay9
that’s great news. I’ll give it a try ASAP.
so just for the confirmation, am I right that the encoder is being used only for the non-gps navigation and/or helping EKF?


The wheel encoders are normally used only by the EKF as a substitude for the GPS. They can also be used with the “wheel rate controller” to ensure each wheel turns at the correct speed but in recent testing I think we’ve determined that this doesn’t add any value.

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