New for 2020, it’s Steve Koci’s DIY RC Controller Addikit
Boffintronics partnered with Addicore and Steve Koci of DIY Animatronics to create this kit. Steve is a writer for Servo Magazine and has had his animatronic articles published in the book The Ultimate Guide To DIY Animatronics. The DIY RC Controller Addikit is featured in an article written by Steve in a recent issue of Servo Magazine.
The DIY RC Controller Addikit is a general purpose RC controller and receiver based off of the ATmega328P and the nRF24L01+ 2.4GHz Wireless Transceiver. With 2 XY joysticks, 2 slide pots, 6 buttons, and 2 toggle switches, the DIY RC Controller gives you many different ways to control animatronic displays, puppets, robotics, vehicles, drones, and much more!
Out of the box the included Arduino sketches allow for the control of 6 servos and 6 digital outputs. There is extra IO on board the receiver that can be utilized if you are willing to roll up your sleeves and tweak the code.
Want to control more than one receiver? The DIY RC Controller Addikit has the ability to control up to 4 receivers in multi-mode.
The Addikit comes with 1 FEETECH (Fitec) FS90 9G Mini Servo and 1 Boffintronics RC Receiver board to get you started. Additional servos or receiver boards are available.
As seen at the San Diego Maker Faire, we developed this kit with Addicore and the San Diego Makers Guild as an easy way to build a cardboard bot that is controlled via a smartphone or tablet.
Wait, you’re telling me you don’t have any idea what a cardboard sumo bot is? The rules are simple, just use your bot to push another bot outside of a circle drawn on the ground. You can even add weapons, like a flipper, to the bot to gain an advantage. A video taken at the 2018 San Diego Maker Fair is embedded below.
This AddiKit also makes a great robot platform for experimenting with servos and sensors and allows for expandability.
Addicore also offers this kit for education and events. Visit Addicore.com for more information.
This is the custom designed Boffintronics RoboBoffin Mini control board used in the Cardboard Sumo Bot Addikit. It is based on the ESP8266 ESP-12F module and is compatible with the Arduino IDE and with NodeMCU.
The board includes an on-board USB Micro connector and USB to serial (UART) converter, making it easy to power and program the board by simply connecting it to your computer with a USB Micro cable.
Included are 12 headers set up for driving servos (5V, signal, and ground). Additional signals provided via P2 and P3.
Each board will come with the Cardboard Sumo Bot Driving software already installed. You can easily reprogram with your own code.
Have you ever had wires or components fall out of your solderless breadboard just as you are preparing to show it off ? Or maybe just picked up an older project and wondered why it doesn’t work anymore? Or worse, where did all the parts go!? We have! And that’s why we created these awesome solder breadboards.
Solder breadboards, or perfboards as they are sometimes called, are a great way to ruggedize and replicate your favorite breadboard creations.
Designed with the same row and column layout as standard solderless plugin breadboards, transferring or copying a design couldn’t be easier.
The rows and columns are labeled just like the solderless breadboards for easy reference, the circuit pads are gold plated for superior solderability and the white soldermask makes your projects look awesome!
There have been a few questions about how to hook up the Boffintronics C64 / Atari Joystick Adapter to a Raspberry Pi. Here is a quickstart guide to get you up and running so you can enjoy all of that retro computing magic!
1. Plug in the Boffintronics C64/Atari adapter to the Raspberry Pi using the GPIO Ribbon Cable.
Make sure that Pin 1 on the Pi is connected to Pin 1 on the adapter board. The picture below has Pin 1 on the top of both boards.
3. Replace /boot/retrogame.cfg with the retrogame.cfg file from here and reboot.
I have the joysticks mapped to the following keyboard keys
J1 Button 1
J2 Button 1
You can change the keyboard keys to anything that you want in the retrogame.cfg file, just don’t change the column of numbers that set up the GPIO. Those are mapped to the proper signal lines on the joystick ports on the adapter.
Have you ever wanted to add haptic feedback to an existing project? Boffintronics has you covered! We’ve created a haptic feedback module that you can integrate quickly and easily.
The module consists of an ERM (eccentric rotating mass) style vibration motor and a MOSFET driver. It can be powered from 3.3V power pin and the enable (VB pin) can be driven from any 5V or 3.3V digital output pin.
The module has 0.1″ connectors on the bottom for plugging into standard breadboards as well as terminal blocks to connect wires.
PetRockBlock has also come up with the GamepadBlock. The GamepadBlock adds 17 inputs for additional joysticks or buttons. The GamepadBlock connects to a computer as a standard USB Human Interface Device (HID). Since HID is a standard protocol, the GamepadBlock can be used with Windows, Mac, Linux, and many other systems.
The GamepadBlock does not have separate inputs for Player 1 and Player 2 as the ControlBlock has, just numbered inputs 1-17. To make things simple, I hook up Player 1 on the left and Player 2 on the right.
To hook them up, connect the following wires;
Player 1 – Right
Player 1 – Left
Player 1 – Up
Player 1 – Down
Player 1 – Button
Player 2 – Right
Player 2 – Left
Player 2 – Up
Player 2 – Down
Player 2 – Button
For the GamepadBlock to work correctly with the C64 board, the firmware must be updated to at least version 1.2.0. The instructions to update the firmware is here.
Set the DIP switches to the correct mode for C64 and Atari controllers. (A=1, B=0, C=1). This mode allows for the best functionality in the C64 emulator VICE as well as MAME.
Note: If you are using the GamepadBlock on a Linux based system, such as the Raspberry Pi, you will need to patch the OS to allow for 2 player functionality. The instructions for the patch is located here.
While the Boffintronics Commodore 64 Adapter board can be hooked directly up to the GPIO of the Raspberry Pi, one of the easier ways is to use the PetRockBlock ControlBlock.
The ControlBlock is an add on board for the Raspberry Pi that adds 32 extra inputs for additional joysticks or buttons. The ControlBlock also allows for adding a power switch and LED with intelligent start up and shutdown scripts.
Hooking up the C64 board is fairly simple since standard Commodore and Atari joysticks are just switch closures that ground the corresponding pin on the connector. Each joystick will require 5 connections plus a ground.
The ControlBlock breaks up the inputs so that Player 1 is on one side and Player 2 is on the other.
For Player 1, connect the following wires;
ControlBlock (Player 1)
For Player 2, connect the following wires;
ControlBlock (Player 2)
If you want to use the power switch and LED functions of the ControlBlock, the instructions can be found here.
You will need to install the drivers for the the Controlblock on your Raspberry Pi which can be found here.
Once the driver is installed, use the arcade button profile. This allows for the best functionality in the C64 emulator VICE.