Sweepbot 1A

Bathroom Vacuuming robot

Updated 7/4/11


 Here is the results of several months of work on a new floor cleaning mechanism for the long lasting Sweepbot. This robot has been in operation for years now, sweeping up excess cat litter that manages to escape the litter box in the bathroom. But maintenance of the sweep mechanism was getting tedious, and Ive decided to make a new lower maintenance (I hope!) cleaning unit. Since I built the robot with a huge cutout in the center to put in any type of sweeper I wanted, it was not too bad to modify it to accept the new design.

Shown at left is the final results of many months of experimentation, and assembly. Ive labeled the key components. The suction fan is from a toy "wall walking" spider from Radio Shack, which used suction to stick to the walls as you drove it around with a remote IR unit. I sacrificed this $10 toy to get the suction motor and fan out.

The unit glides on the bathroom tile floor on Teflon guides and the dirt bin can be emptied while on the robot from the bottom.

Test fitting of the canister. It is spring mounted to float on the floor independent of the robot. The robot basically "pulls" it along as it slides on the floor. The entire top of the robot has been removed here for clarity.

Top view showing the fit of the final assembly. While the air intake of the sweeper is small, it passes over the floor many times each run which lasts 5 minutes. Any longer sucks the batteries down since this sweep motor draws 2 amps at 3 volts. To the sweepers upper left is the voltage controller I made from a huge NPN power transistor. It drops the batteries 13v down to 3.0 volts. Not an easy task for a 2 amp draw!

The NPN which is a 2N3055 is used as an emitter follower configuration to do this task. The heat sink keeps it from overheating from the 20W load.

To dump the bin, which is done about every two weeks, the cover plate on the bottom of the canister is connected by two neodymium magnets seen here on each side of the label. You simply pull the bottom off, dump it in the waste basket and snap the cover back on which totally seals the bottom.