Ryan Walmsley has taken an old claw machine and retro-fitted a Raspberry Pi to control it. A custom controller board (pictured below) gives him 2 dual H-bridges to drive the three motors on the X, Y and Z axis and some Darlington transistors allow him to control the electromagnet inside the claw as well as the front panel light bulbs. The machine has a complicated power system which utilises 12V, 24V and 48V so there are power rails on there, too. Video streaming and code execution is done on an old computer running Ubuntu. Thanks to some very clever use of the GPIO Zero remoting functions, Ryan runs the code on the PC which then triggers the robotic behaviour on the Pi. You can play The Pi Claw over on this custom website which uses Twitch to stream video from the game. The game is only available when Ryan is, normally between 11am and 9pm, UK time.
Each Friday is PiDay here at Adafruit! Be sure to check out our posts, tutorials and new Raspberry Pi related products. Adafruit has the largest and best selection of Raspberry Pi accessories and all the code & tutorials to get you up and running in no time!
Make a robot friend with Adafruit’s CRICKIT – A Creative Robotics & Interactive Construction Kit. It’s an add-on to our popular Circuit Playground Express, FEATHER and other platforms to make and program robots with CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. Start controlling motors, servos, solenoids. You also get signal pins, capacitive touch sensors, a NeoPixel driver and amplified speaker output. It complements & extends your boards so you can still use all the goodies on the microcontroller, now you have a robotics playground as well.