I’ve put together a basic two-wheeled Arduino robot platform that comes in just under $60.
I like that the chassis is aluminum so it’s reusable year-to-year. Alternatives I considered (here, here, and here) are laser cut plastic and are similarly-priced. This chassis is specifically designed to work with micro DC Motors, which are admittedly a weird size, but I love their compactness. I’m not sure how kids will attach the line sensors we’ll inevitably use at the start of the year to build a line-following robot.
The caster wheel makes for a simpler design than adding two more wheels. It’s easiest to start the kids with two-wheel drive so that the third point exists for balance only. Some robots use a swivel wheel but I find the robot sometimes get stuck with the wheel in an awkward position.
The Adafruit Motor Shield has been flexible for my entire year of robotics. We’ve also used the SparkFun Motor Driver Shield, which tops out at 2 DC motors.
Here’s the parts list:
Do you have suggestions or improvements?