Week 3 Update: The motor controller, a word on the Z-axis, and 11 more winning schools!

Hi Everybody!

We’ve officially made it to the home stretch of the campaign! Just one week left before the campaign closes and we can really get to work on getting Maslow into your hands. Once again, thank you for the continued supporting and for being a part of this awesome Maslow community!

This past week, Bar has put a serious amount of work into the math that helps Maslow to run as smoothly as possible and we’ve got a new version of the motor controller board to show off. Additionally, we wanted to say another word about the z-axis. Finally, we’ve got 11 more educational institutions who have won free Maslows through our Support a School contest!

We got the second revision of our controller board back from the board house this week. The changes since the version you saw in the kickstarter video are somewhat minor, a couple resistors which proved unnecessary were removed, the connectors for the motors were switched to be 2.54mm spacing making it easier to hack (you can connect to them with standard size headers or perf-board now), and most importantly we put the logo on.

The Motor Controller PCB

The Motor Controller PCB

We have seen a number of fantastic ideas appearing in messages and on the forums for ideas of other things (servos, relays, lights, sensors...etc) that you might want to connect to your controller. We hear you and we want to make Maslow as easy to hack, modify, customize, and improve as possible. To make that easier we are adding 4 auxiliary plugs to the controller board. Each auxiliary plug will be follow the standard servo plug format (GND, +5V, Signal), and will connect to a GPIO pin meaning each auxiliary plug can be used either as an output to control something or as an input to sense something. We can’t wait to see what you do with them. You can see the new layout below.

The Motor Controler PCB with Aux Ports Added

The Motor Controler PCB with Aux Ports Added

We’ve had a few of you ask for another z-axis update in the past week. Right now we are working through the process we’ve gone through for the other parts of the machine of writing up dimensions and specifications for each of the parts and sending them out to be fabricated by a number of factories. We will then get back samples of each part, to test. Once we have a supplier for each part, we will make the z-axis available on our website. This process is accelerated by the fact that we can get many of the parts from our existing suppliers, but it could still take up to a month, so bear with us while nothing exciting happens for a while.

This week, we have eleven winners of the Support a School contest to announce! Collectively, these educational institutions garnered 1068 votes for their wins! Next week we will announce our final eleven winners. There is still plenty chance for a newly nominated educational institution to win, so if you have any ideas for anyone who might be interested, don’t hesitate to send them to www.maslowcnc.com/nominate!

And the winners this week are…

1) Fernbank LINKS (FRC team#4468) in Atlanta, Georgia

2) David Thibodeaux STEM Magnet Academy in Lafayette, Louisiana

3) Poudre High School in Fort Collin, Colorado

4) FRC 2855 - BEASTBot - Como Park Sr in St. Paul, Minnesota

5) East Cobb Robotics in Marietta, Georgia

6) FRC Team 88 TJ^2 in Bridgewater, Massachusetts

7) Makelt Labs in Nashua, New Hampshire

8) The Bodgery in Madison, Wisconsin

9) Xaverian High School (FRC 806) in Brooklyn, New York

10) Sherburne Earlville Central School in Sherburne, New York

11) Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Until next week, thanks again for being the best community we could ever have hoped for, and have a great rest of your week!

The Maslow Team Bar, Hannah, & Tommy