The Problem

So, I’ve been driving my robot outside a bunch recently, doing laps round an empty cul-de-sac. And then, all of a sudden, I hear this crunching noise emitting from one of the motors on the robot.

A bit of background: so far, I’ve been using a chassis from Jaycar Electronics that costs $64.95 (of the Australian kind). One of the reasons why I chose this chassis is that it comes with motors, which, in the end, results in more bang for your buck (or so I thought). I also don’t have access to either a 3D printer or a laser cutter, so those options were ruled out.

Turns out I should have spent more on the motor units.

The grinding sound was a clear signal to me that at least one of the teeth of at least one of the cheap, plastic gears inside one of the cheap, geared, plastic motor units had been worn down in a significant capacity. This manifests itself in the attached wheel having less torque and a slower spin rate. Not good.

The Solution

Remember the redesigning post from a little while ago? I shall go down that route instead of pursuing this one any further. There are also some attachments which I could make in a more robust manner, and the motors included with the EV3 set are significantly more robust than the ones I was using.

Redesign ahoy!