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April 29, 2010 05:45 PM

Categories: Robot Hacks and Mods

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GWJax

Member
Joined: 12/28/2007

Hey everyone,

Does anyone have a dead "non-functional" encorder board that you can ship to me. I would like to write another article on how to repair these and give detailed instructions in doing so. I'll also show you where you can get the parts from scrap piles or buying new components. If anyone can send me one or two I'll fix them and ship them back to for FREE. I'm just trying to help you all out for a quick fix rather than waiting months for WowWee to give you the replacements.

I would do this my self but at the time I do not own a Rovio YET!!! hehe

Note That was the old post now I have a new topic line and the repair post for this is  done so everyone can repair thier own encoders.

Happy Hacking

Jax 

GWJax, To Hack and make mods on robots is a life style and comes natural and not by choice. If a robot has a screw to open it then it must be opened!

Discussion:    Add a Comment | Comments 1-13 of 13 | Latest Comment

May 11, 2010 10:35 PM

Yeah, I have a dead one. Let me know the details.

November 16, 2010 1:18 PM

Jax

Did you get around to writing that article on how to repair the encoder boards?

November 16, 2010 1:59 PM

Isolated Monkey said: Jax Did you get around to writing that article on how to repair the encoder boards?

No never did get an article ready because I did not have an encoder board. I do have a Rovio now that I can rip out the encoder board and make a repair with a set of an old roller mouse IR's. and then test it out. I'll see what I can do to get the DIY post done for ya. I just thought no one out here wanted to see how it was done. But I guess so..

Jax

GWJax, To Hack and make mods on robots is a life style and comes natural and not by choice. If a robot has a screw to open it then it must be opened!

November 16, 2010 2:56 PM

I would be interested since I have some bad encoders and wowwee hasn't sent me any new ones yet. And even if they do send them they will just go bad again!

That would really be cool if you know how and would probably help other people
stuck with the wowwee support fiasco.

November 16, 2010 3:12 PM

And if you need some bad encoders I will be glad to send you these. That way you won't have to use yours (assuming they are good ones). Just let me know.

November 17, 2010 10:20 PM

Haven't seen this topic before, and since your encoders will burn out eventually ,you are glad the the work is already done. ;)

If you can provide the info we need to make "new" encoders, man that would be wonderful.

November 17, 2010 10:47 PM

I should have something in a few days for y'all so you can start repairing your own encoder sensors.

You just need to find an old junk mouse with a ball under it. This will repair 2 encoders. In the mean time I'll try to find the part numbers for the IR and IR-RX so you can order new ones if you want to.


Jax

GWJax, To Hack and make mods on robots is a life style and comes natural and not by choice. If a robot has a screw to open it then it must be opened!

December 29, 2010 3:04 PM

Hi GW, let me know if you still require some duff encoders. I've got at least one. I'm definately interested in the repair too. Any info appreciated.

Regards,

Nat.

April 16, 2011 8:40 PM updated: August 27, 2011 10:26 AM

OK the repairs are simple. Just find an old computer mouse that has a roller ball and open it up.

desolder the TX and RX chips from this board.

Yep you got it your bad encoder from your Rovio. Next cut off the black housing from the board by cutting the 2 tab UNDER the board with an x-acto knife and save the housing because you'll need to put it back on.

These are the ones you need to replace. Now on the clear TX IRLED it will have a small bubble on the side and this should point towards the RX Receiver. Make sure this is resoldered correctly else you'll blow out the IR LED. Next is RX Receiver, with this one you'll see a small lip on one side of the sensor. This lip faces to the back side. So when you look between the slot you should not see anything but the bubble. Once you open up your encoder look very closely and you'll see what I'm talking about. Use an eye loupe or the magnifying glass if you have trouble seeing close up like I do.

Resolder the parts back in and replace your encoder cover and secure it down with a dab of hot glue on the bottom of the board where you cut the tabs off.

See that was not hard at all. It's a 10 min fix which is better than waiting on WowWee to send you a replacement that will take at least 3 months. If you have any questions or need more photos let me know and I'll help you out.

Happy Hacking

Jax

GWJax, To Hack and make mods on robots is a life style and comes natural and not by choice. If a robot has a screw to open it then it must be opened!

April 16, 2011 8:49 PM

BTW Sorry it took me so long to post this..

Jax

GWJax, To Hack and make mods on robots is a life style and comes natural and not by choice. If a robot has a screw to open it then it must be opened!

August 27, 2011 7:45 AM

Hi Jax, thanks for the update. I eventually received a spare set of encoders from Wowee in Europe. Unfortunately, the numskull packed them in a sheet of wrapped up A4 paper so when they arrived, 2 were completely banjaxed with snapped circuit boards. I managed to rescue the Rx & Tx diodes and replace the duff ones in the Rovio after some deft soldering iron activities. Funny thing is I bought another Rovio from some bloke on Ebay and this one has now been running for over a year without a hitch. I've not had the bottle to swap charging docks but I'm curious whether the problem is the base or the Rovio. I very much doubt it's the encoders being a "Duff Batch" as I've heard of people having new ones and them packing up within a short time. Have the mouse encoders lasted or do they give up after a while. If not, that may indicate that the encoders Wowee use are crap. It's a bit disappointing that Wowee are not supporting the Rovio any more. I think they had a really good product but it required a bit of proving before release. The small teething problems cost the reputation of this little fella dearly.

August 27, 2011 10:14 AM

Gnattycole said: Hi Jax, thanks for the update. I eventually received a spare set of encoders from Wowee in Europe. Unfortunately, the numskull packed them in a sheet of wrapped up A4 paper so when they arrived, 2 were completely banjaxed with snapped circuit boards. I managed to rescue the Rx & Tx diodes and replace the duff ones in the Rovio after some deft soldering iron activities. Funny thing is I bought another Rovio from some bloke on Ebay and this one has now been running for over a year without a hitch. I've not had the bottle to swap charging docks but I'm curious whether the problem is the base or the Rovio. I very much doubt it's the encoders being a "Duff Batch" as I've heard of people having new ones and them packing up within a short time. Have the mouse encoders lasted or do they give up after a while. If not, that may indicate that the encoders Wowee use are crap. It's a bit disappointing that Wowee are not supporting the Rovio any more. I think they had a really good product but it required a bit of proving before release. The small teething problems cost the reputation of this little fella dearly.

I agree with you about WowWee having a good product but because they pushed it out before a good long beta testing was done like they have done with other robots through RoboCommunity, it cost them dearly...

Sorry to hear that your replacement were packed badly. I hope you e-mailed WowWee support about it not that they would rush another set out to ya but at least it would be on paper so they could correct it in the shipping department.

Charging issues: It kinda of different for everyone, at least what I read with the solutions that work for others.

1. replace the base

2. replace the charger with a 9v wall wart

3. flip the diodes in the charging base because they were installed backwards

4. Battery replacementif you have the blue shrink wraped battery

5. place magnets on the base charging skids so they will stick to the Rovio's charging leads

6. and a few others that I forget.

The one I would do is #2 first before the others. This one seems to correct most of the problems.

As for the mouse sensors, I have not had to replace them after their initial installment. So I would say that WowWee has a bad source for these sensors..

Hope tthis helps you out with your questions.

Jax

GWJax, To Hack and make mods on robots is a life style and comes natural and not by choice. If a robot has a screw to open it then it must be opened!

February 2, 2012 8:52 PM

GWJax said:
Gnattycole said: Hi Jax, thanks for the update. I eventually received a spare set of encoders from Wowee in Europe. Unfortunately, the numskull packed them in a sheet of wrapped up A4 paper so when they arrived, 2 were completely banjaxed with snapped circuit boards. I managed to rescue the Rx & Tx diodes and replace the duff ones in the Rovio after some deft soldering iron activities. Funny thing is I bought another Rovio from some bloke on Ebay and this one has now been running for over a year without a hitch. I've not had the bottle to swap charging docks but I'm curious whether the problem is the base or the Rovio. I very much doubt it's the encoders being a "Duff Batch" as I've heard of people having new ones and them packing up within a short time. Have the mouse encoders lasted or do they give up after a while. If not, that may indicate that the encoders Wowee use are crap. It's a bit disappointing that Wowee are not supporting the Rovio any more. I think they had a really good product but it required a bit of proving before release. The small teething problems cost the reputation of this little fella dearly.
I agree with you about WowWee having a good product but because they pushed it out before a good long beta testing was done like they have done with other robots through RoboCommunity, it cost them dearly... Sorry to hear that your replacement were packed badly. I hope you e-mailed WowWee support about it not that they would rush another set out to ya but at least it would be on paper so they could correct it in the shipping department. Charging issues: It kinda of different for everyone, at least what I read with the solutions that work for others. 1. replace the base 2. replace the charger with a 9v wall wart 3. flip the diodes in the charging base because they were installed backwards 4. Battery replacementif you have the blue shrink wraped battery 5. place magnets on the base charging skids so they will stick to the Rovio's charging leads 6. and a few others that I forget. The one I would do is #2 first before the others. This one seems to correct most of the problems. As for the mouse sensors, I have not had to replace them after their initial installment. So I would say that WowWee has a bad source for these sensors.. Hope tthis helps you out with your questions. Jax

Jax this thread is wicked... well done you need to read up about our new open source project at this thread http://www.robocommunity.com/forum/thread/18771/a-new-era-in-Rovio-Firmware-H... but in particular the last 3 or 4 posts

PM your username when you have registered at sourceforge - we need you!

Sociorobotics Blog: http://sociorobotics.wordpress.com ~ Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sociorobotics

Discussion:    Add a Comment | Back to Top | Comments 1-13 of 13 | Latest Comment

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