Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Robosapien V2 rewiring

RoboSapien V2 Wire Fix and other Mods.

Some time ago I found this old but still very cool power toy.
And as a gift I wanted for my son...and a bit for myself.
I got it second hand and this was clear, it had some cracks and heavy nicotine odor...
But it worked and was complete with manual book and no battery leaking damage.

Soon I did notice some uncontrollable movements and battery drains.
When searching the internet of any tricks, hacks and modifications I found something disappointing.
The wires running through the legs are of very bad quality, more V2 models have it!
Somehow the other wires are fine, but the leg ones are not...
A foot connector cable
Total break down!
Here are some examples of how bad they become. To the point of causing short circuit.
 We (me and son) had a clear to do, rewire the legs.

Gathering information

Lucky we were one of many that committed to this job, as is a common problem.
So first taking apart the robot is a challenge, it covers are very fragile and so both upper leg parts are lost and now looking for a 3D model replacement.
Second point is that the arms can fall off after removing the chest covers (unlike with the V1 model).
Once the covers are gone and the wires are untangled, as they cross halve way the body.
Write down how all the wires fit in to place.
All the info can be found on the internet (see references), but it saves time to already have it.
Then remove the legs from the body.

We did not have the same size cables as we used the from an old computer PSU.
They come in many colors and long size, remember not making the length to long (as they might jam once the covers are back) OR short!!
The foot board
Also we needed to recycle the plugs so had to carefully take them apart and replace them with the new wires.

Unfortunately at the foot(s) base the wires are soldered thus taking more time.

Left Foot Connector
Besides time consumption, the job did not take more than a day (thanks to my little helper!).
Right Foot Connector
Foot with still old wires
the Motor Board

Finally the wires are fixed and everything is working again.


Here are a few websites that helped me or can be helpful.
  1. Very useful -> For info on the Mainboard, it also have links to other internal parts.
  2. In case you (like me) forgot to write Foot Wiring information.
  3. Java is not my thing, but I found Robosapien Java Code, might be useful.
  4. Some basic Robosapien Information.
  5. For building you own remote, the IR codes.
  6. Info for connecting external power got here.
  7. Then I found RoboCommunity but this site doesn't seem to work correct or host very useful info.  But please have a look for yourself.

Last point, some extra mods:

After the wire update I did want to have look at the possibility for an external power source.
As described on one of the reference website (#) it is possible (2 pictures)...

The Ground (GND) on Mainboard

On the left you were the GND is connected.
Closeup of the Ground on Mainboard
And a close up of it. This GND can be used by both the 6 & 9 volt.
6 volt (orange)

Next are the two input points for the 6 and 9 volt, remember that the 9 volt can take up some amp, I did no          measurement but have a 5 AMP hooked up.
9 volt (brown)

An upgrade on this I plan to have the battery charge when external power is connected.
However this will require some additional wires (3 extra) to the batteries.

The idea did cross my mind for having wireless charging in foot(s) but you will lose weight what can make the body unstable!

Something else I still need to look in to is to replace the IR communication between remote and robot with a RF, like with a remote car.
So there is not dependency on clear line of sight.
But I will document this upgrade on a different post.