Inspired by the RHex, an elegant design for a highly mobile robot developed as part of a DARPA project, I decided to build my own from scratch. My main goal was to attempt to find any gaps in my prototype design and building skills for a programmable electro-mechanical device like this.
I am extremely happy with the result from a visual and mechanical design perspective. I am also very happy with what I learned about wire wrapping, 3d-printing, CNC milling, mechanical 3d-modelling with strength calculations, and embedded software development with TDD and CI.
Unfortunately, I made a bad decision when selecting the motors early in the project. These motors had severe cogging torque which means that they are terrible at low speeds and the robot has a very jerky movement. By the time I had understood the extent of the problem, I had invested too much money into the motors to afford switching them.
For a day-by-day description of the build process, see my crafting diary.