DragonTail Project, New Stuff, Sales

IT IS NOW NOVEMBER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL. STAY CALM. While a change in month is always an unsettling event, this one is particularly dreadful. Why exactly, we’re not sure. But we have the feeling that if it was called ‘Yesvember’, things would be a lot more… Positive. So we’re doing what we can this month to reverse the trend by saying YES to a DragonTail project, tiny gearmotors, and a bunch of other items that need some lovin’.But first we just want to point out something kinda neat. Jeremie, or tech-guy extraordinaire, recently wrote a post on his blog that went into depth on the recent RC conversion project for the BrutusBot platform. His post was so well written, that it was even picked up and covered by Electronics-Lab and Build Lounge. So be sure to head over to Jeremie’s site and poke around – he has some really good stuff goin’ on.

Also, our pals at Roboteknia, who distribute Solarbotics stock (along with other robotic/electronics goodness) in Mexico, just released their first issue of their own magazine. And if you take a peek at page 48, you might notice a feature on BEAM robotics as well as Solarbotics itself. We don’t quite have any staff in the office that speaks fluent Spanish (although we have English, Russian, French, and Geek covered), so we’ll have to assume that they said some wonderful things about it. All jokes aside, however, our sincere congratulations go out to Roboteknia on their first release. Here’s hoping for many more!

In other news, VIDEO!

“What is this contraption of moving pictures all about, anyways?” you ask. Well, you may want to keep reading into our…

New Releases!

Dragontail Navigator DragonTail Navigator Project – $63.50
Ok, on with the other show. So last week we introduced you to the DragonTail – a brand new, bare-bones robotic platform. It’s shiny and slick lookin’, but… What can you do with it? Those tricky folks in our RnD department whipped up an example project, and we’ve put together a bundle for it. This project makes the DragonTail capable of navigating its environment, using long-range infrared sensors and short-range tactile sensors to go around whatever is in the way. The Arduino setup makes for a simple build without the need for a dedicated motor controller, and we’ve even put together some sample code.
GM25 125:1 Micro Pager Planetary Gearmotor – $14.50
Good things come in small packages, awesome things come in tiny packages, and UNBELIEVABLY COOL THINGS come in medium-sized packages that are shaped like horseshoes and taste like walnuts. Just be glad that today we have something of the ‘awesome’ variety to show you. The GM25 is our latest gearmotor, and from its 4.5mm x 18.7mm (0.177x.738″) body it can produce 150~380rpm with no load, from 2.5~3.5V at 70~150mA. Oh, and torque? 0.006~0.020Kgf*cm (0.083 in*~ 0.278 in*oz). So much awesome inside so much tiny. So many possibilities…
Sharp GP2Y0A02YK Analog RangefinderSharp - Analog Distance Sensor 10-80cm New Release: Sharp Sensors
Some days you just need to detect distances. Whether it’s for simple rangefinding purposes or for obstacle avoidance, infra-red light (or, as those of us not in the technical department like to say, “magic”) sensors are a go-to method for understanding an environment. We’ve managed to get ahold of a supply of Sharp analog rangefinder sensors, which are very difficult to find in North America. We have two models, the GP2Y0A02YK (larger size with 20-150cm/7.9-59″ range) and the GP2Y0A21YK0F (smaller with 10-80cm/3.9-31.5″ range). Find out which one suits your application best – we used the GP2Y0A02YK on the DragonTail Navigator.


We carry some pretty neat stuff. And the only way we have to make them even more totally great, even temporarily, is to knock a few bucks off the price so that they’re easier for someone to get their hands on. This week’s neat-stuff-at-a-great-price includes a kit and a few books.
Zendulum Zendulum Kit – $26.95 (save $3.00)
Build a simple solar-powered desk-toy that features a magnetic ball that will continuosly roll back and forth, as if you told friction to go take a hike. Don’t have a source of light at your desk for power? You can also plug it into a USB port to keep rollin’ in the dark.
Make: The Fourth Year Collector's Box Set Make Magazine Collections – $44.95 (25% off)
If you’ve just discovered Make Magazine and haven’t been subscribed for long enough to collect most of the back issues, you’re in luck. You can buy all four issues from a year within one handy-dandy set, instead of getting them separately.

Eccentric Cubicle Eccentric Cubicle – $25.50 (29% off)
Sometimes you need desk toys that are way better than what your co-workers have. And if you enjoy building things for yourself, this is where Eccentric Cubicle comes into the picture, featuring projects on building gadgets to protect, defend and supply your precious work surface.
The Best of Instructables - Volume 1 The Best of Instructables$25.50 (15% off)
If you’re dying for a collection of impossibly cool DIY projects, Instructables.com is the place to go. But if you’re also the kind that enjoys beautiful books (think of it as a physical, offline version of the internet), this collection will provide you with hours of fascinating reading and building.

Hopefully this has been an encouraging way to start off the month. We’ll be doing our best to keep the world’s morale up over the next several weeks by continuing to roll out more brand-new items and putting other parts of our inventory on sale. Until then, enjoy the first week of Yesvember!