Building a pole climber based on arduino brain

Hey all, This is my first post and this is also my first time building with vex, My PLTw teacher is expecting us to program our robots with an Arduino so that is one of the problems I need to overcome. Another is building a robot to climb up a 2 in PVC pipe. I’m think using some rubber wheels in 4 corners to grab and drive me up. Any recommendations and help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks, Alex

First which system are you using, V5 or IQ? Next what does climb up a 2 mean? I know that there was pole challenge with starstruck so maybe look up some starstruck reveal videos to get some ideas.

this forum is for Vex Robotics, not Arduino.

I think he means a 2inch PVC pipe, aswell as using an arduino instead of the v5 or cortex brain.

Yes sorry I’m new and not sure where to post this. I will check out the starstruck challenge. Any ideas on how to design the bot?

Hey @Alex20049, welcome to the forums.

As some others have suggested, it is always good to look out into the real world for examples of a design that does something similar to what you are trying to accomplish. If you wanted to lift heavy things vertically, you might look into forklifts or boom cranes or something similar. In your case, you need to climb a vertical 2" PVC pipe, there are many robots that already do that from VRC Starstuck. I’d agree with some other users and start your search there. It might not answer your question fully, but it’s a great place to start.

As for the arduino part, we don’t really use those a lot here because we do have the Cortex and V5 Brain available to most users on the forums and those have a bunch of knowledge base articles and forum posts to answer most questions.

Since you’re in PLTW, are you using MC29’s and 393 motors? If so, here’s a useful thread that Tabor posted a great article in. Arduino control for MC29 and 393 motor. It’s pretty easy once you understand what numbers you need to throw at the MC29. I used this same article when figuring out how to program my first combat robot.

Hope this helps!


Thanks for all the help! I will be sure to check out the links provided. Thanks

Hey @Alex20049 ! for the mechanical side, it depends on the length of the pipe. If the pipe is shorter, then I would recommend doing something similar to Starstruck vex robots. Here is an example of a skills run, with a hang at the end.

If you can see, it seems to grab the top of the pipe to pull itself up.
This one may be better for a longer one, so the concept of it may help.


@Alex20049 can you tell us more about it?

Is it a competition?
Do you have to climb fastest?
Do you have to drive up to the pole first?
Does it have to use remote or an autonomous?

Because if no-no-no-no then a motor, a battery, and a stwich to stop at the top is all you need:

Then, there is this one pretending to be a mechanical caterpillar of some sort: :bug:


lots of great info here. I am leaning towards a climber using wheels with enough grip to scale up the pipe. Since the pipe in about 8 feet tall the hanging robot design will not work. I will begin my R and D tomorrow and I believe I should be able to start building by the end of the week. Also this is not for any competition. my teacher decided to give us the last month of school to have a little fun. I have also never coded with a arduino so it will be a challenge. I belive it is a arduino uno but I am not sure, more details soon!


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