Red Box Robot Hookup Guide

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Contributors: Nick Poole
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Making Moves

Now that you've made all of the connections you need to get the motors running, let's get some code on that RedStick to spin our wheels! I'm going to assume for the purposes of this section that you have some experience with Arduino programming and that you're already set up to load code onto the SparkFun RedStick. If you need a little help getting started, check out this tutorial.

In order to get code onto your RedStick, you will need to either remove it from the breadboard (carefully) or use a USB extension cable to plug it into your computer's USB port.

The Arduino code below takes advantage of our library. If you are unfamiliar with installing an Arduino library, check out our tutorial.

Download the library using the link below, or grab the latest version from our GitHub repository.

This example code will make your robot do a little dance. This is a great way to make sure you've wired everything right so far. Besides, we've been staring at this thing long enough; it's about time it did something!

language:c
/******************************************************************
TestRun.ino
TB6612FNG H-Bridge Motor Driver Example code
Michelle @ SparkFun Electronics
8/20/16
https://github.com/sparkfun/SparkFun_TB6612FNG_Arduino_Library

Uses 2 motors to show examples of the functions in the library.  This 
causes a robot to do a little 'jig'.  Each movement has an equal and 
opposite movement so assuming your motors are balanced the bot should 
end up at the same place it started.

Resources:
TB6612 SparkFun Library
*****************************************************************/

// This is the library for the TB6612 that contains the class Motor and all the
// functions
#include <SparkFun_TB6612.h>

// Pins for all inputs, keep in mind the PWM defines must be on PWM pins
// the default pins listed are the ones used on the Redbot (ROB-12097) with
// the exception of STBY which the Redbot controls with a physical switch
#define AIN1 2
#define BIN1 7
#define AIN2 4
#define BIN2 5
#define PWMA 10
#define PWMB 6
#define STBY 9

// these constants are used to allow you to make your motor configuration 
// line up with function names like forward.  Value can be 1 or -1
const int offsetA = -1;
const int offsetB = -1;

// Initializing motors.  The library will allow you to initialize as many
// motors as you have memory for.  If you are using functions like forward
// that take 2 motors as arguements you can either write new functions or
// call the function more than once.
Motor motor1 = Motor(AIN1, AIN2, PWMA, offsetA, STBY);
Motor motor2 = Motor(BIN1, BIN2, PWMB, offsetB, STBY);

void setup()
{
 //Nothing here
}


void loop()
{
   //Use of the drive function which takes as arguements the speed
   //and optional duration.  A negative speed will cause it to go
   //backwards.  Speed can be from -255 to 255.  Also use of the 
   //brake function which takes no arguements.
   motor1.drive(255,1000);
   motor1.drive(-255,1000);
   motor1.brake();
   delay(1000);

   //Use of the drive function which takes as arguements the speed
   //and optional duration.  A negative speed will cause it to go
   //backwards.  Speed can be from -255 to 255.  Also use of the 
   //brake function which takes no arguements.
   motor2.drive(255,1000);
   motor2.drive(-255,1000);
   motor2.brake();
   delay(1000);

   //Use of the forward function, which takes as arguements two motors
   //and optionally a speed.  If a negative number is used for speed
   //it will go backwards
   forward(motor1, motor2, 150);
   delay(1000);

   //Use of the back function, which takes as arguments two motors 
   //and optionally a speed.  Either a positive number or a negative
   //number for speed will cause it to go backwards
   back(motor1, motor2, -150);
   delay(1000);

   //Use of the brake function which takes as arguments two motors.
   //Note that functions do not stop motors on their own.
   brake(motor1, motor2);
   delay(1000);

   //Use of the left and right functions which take as arguements two
   //motors and a speed.  This function turns both motors to move in 
   //the appropriate direction.  For turning a single motor use drive.
   left(motor1, motor2, 100);
   delay(1000);
   right(motor1, motor2, 100);
   delay(1000);

   //Use of brake again.
   brake(motor1, motor2);
   delay(1000);

}

With this code compiled and running on your robot, you've made the first step toward bringing your red box to life. You've probably noticed, however, that it's a little clumsy. It just runs right into anything in its path! The next thing we're going to do is give it the ability to avoid those obstacles...