Cover image for Rover the Mecanum Robot


Watch the associated video here:

Overview - Rover

Meet Rover - the Mecanum marvel. Rover is a simple robot, one you can 3d print yourself using the STL files below. Rover has mecanum wheels - these wheels have small spindles at a 45 degree angle to the direction the wheel is pointing. This means if four of these wheels are used in unison the robot will move sideways.

Bill of Materials

Item Description Cost
Mecanum wheels Make your robot or buggy go every which way with Mecanum omniwheels (pack of 4) £24
HC-SR04 Detect objects in front of the robot using Ultrasound £5
4x 50:1 Micro Metal GearMotors Provide fast and accurate movement with these little motors £5.10
4x Standoff These provide the controller board with room to breath above the chasis, and make it more accessible (pack of 4) £4.50

Mecanum Wheel

Rover is made up of three 3d printable files:

Mecanum wheels

You can buy mecanum wheels online from companies such as Pimoroni at a price of around £24 (excluding shipping).

Other Electronics

Rover uses four N20 Motors, 150RPM motors (the 6v variety) should work fine, however a better option is the N20 Motors with built in Encoders - this enables ultra precise movement and positioning. You’ll need a controller board that can read the values from the encoders to count how many revolutions each motor has made. Encoders are simply a wheel that attaches to the end of the motor shaft, and has a hole or mark that can be read by a sensor, often an infra-red led and infra-red sensor pair. The sensor detects the hole (or some kind of mark) every time the wheel rotates 360 degrees. The rotation data can then be read by the microcontroller to count each revolution and feed this into the algorithm that is driving the motors.

Reading the Range Finder

The range finder uses 4 pins (5V, GND, Echo and Trigger).

MicroPython code

You can grab the demo code for this project over on my github repository:

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