After running into problems with the design of my original quadruped robot, I scaled it down to a quadruped with two degrees of freedom, which uses 8 servos instead of 12.
The Social Quadruped is completely wireless and is operated by my mobile phone or laptop via a Bluetooth connection. The design is centered around this box:
Another requirement of the class project was that we make use of this box in some way in our project. I chose to completely redesign the box into a shell, so as to save on 3D printing time and reduce its weight. It then served as the head for the Social Quadruped, housing the Arduino, the Arduino sensor shield, the Bluetooth serial module, the ultrasonic sensor, the 9V battery that powers the Arduino, and the 4AA batteries that power the servos. I think it also looks a lot better than the original 😎
The Arduino Sensor Shield V5 greatly simplified my wiring process because it had pins for the servos, ultrasonic sensor, and the Bluetooth serial module. It also enabled me to power the servos separately from the Arduino, and the rest of the sensors.
The legs were composed of two servos, each housed in 3D printed brackets, one that moved from side to side, and the other that moved up and down.
The bracket that makes contact with the ground is large so as to keep the robot balanced when it stands and moves around. The Social Quadruped makes use of a shuffling motion to move, and is capable of being manually controlled to move forward, backward, rotate right, rotate left, and wave. Below is a video demonstrating its movement:
The robot also has an autonomous mode, which causes the robot to walk around without manual control using the ultrasonic sensor to detect objects in its path, wave at the first object it gets close to, and avoid this and any other objects in its path.