Jeff Viens's "Chess O' Matic"
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Chess O' Matic

The Chess O' Matic works on many levels, but it is basically controlled by the program that we create to move the motors that generate movement in our projects.  Using the tools given to us in the beginning of the year, we shaped a plain piece of wood into a mechanical work envelope.  Once the physical part of the project is done, meaning the parts you see in front of you,, we then go on to wiring and programming the project to do what we tell it to do.

The project is to work in several stages along the way.  First of all, before anything else takes place, I must "home" the robot to it's starting position.  This is done by the use of several switches placed in specific places in order for the project itself to tell whether or not it is where it is supposed to be.  After this phase is completed, the Chess O' Matic's mechanisms will all work as one to play a full game of chess.  In order to do this, however, we must make sure that each piece of the mechanism is stable.  Once this objective is completed, the sky's the limit as to what I can do to make sure the project not only works properly, but works successfully.

The mechanism will first move to the piece that I tell it to move to.  From there, the vertical print mechanism will lower the gripper just behind the piece.  At this moment, the motor that generates movement in the base sliders will engage itself so that it will move slowly forward to "scoop" up the chess piece.  After this, the vertical motor will lift the piece high enough over every other piece and place it on the block that you wish to move the piece to.  As the game continues, there will be pieces that have to be knocked out.  When this occurs, the vertical mechanism will take the piece off to the side in a nice and orderly fashion.

Once all of these things happen, the game will continue until someone calls "checkmate," just like in a regular game.  This task, all together will take some effort, but I am confident that my Chess O' Matic will dominate the competition.  (And hopefully, everything will work by the time the project is due....)