The construction of the Farmbot started in 2016 and has been receiving intense attention since last summer. The first task was making two wheel-plates. For most of the members, it was a good chance to learn the basic terms and skills the name of parts like screws, tee nuts and locknuts, etc. and, using a universal bender, a band saw and a drill press. Since the M5 screws were different, we spent much time on filing them to fit in to the tracks. The club started to manufacture the gantry, but it was finished in the fall. We were not very productive in the first summer, mostly because of the lack of time and participants.
During the fall semester, we made considerable advancement. Wednesday afternoon was the STEM meeting time and the club had many new members. Thanks to Eva who was the most devoted one of the Farmbot project. She spent tremendous amount of time and made a considerable progress. Members keep learning new skills as we move to different parts. Fatima showed and other students how to solder the wires which also benefits the FRC club. We also made costumed parts such as the 3D-printed carrier supports and the wood-board tool-holder. By the end of the semester, the gantry and the cross slide were ready and could run smoothly on the rails; the z-axis was installed as well.
In 2018 winter semester, the Farmbot project officially becomes a part of our TEJ4M course. The main focus shifts to electronics since most mechanical works, except for the universal tool mount, are done. The very most important thing we learn so far is working efficiently as a group through division of work. In the first several weeks basically two teams work on the electronics box and the UTM. From designing our own “box” (which end up being a board) and finally install it, it takes a group of 5-6 five days. In the meantime, the UTM is finished by the other group. Everyone has something to work on and members cooperate to achieve the maximum efficiency during the week, and the result was satisfying. Currently we are waiting for the great programmers of our team to install the control system, and then there will be testing.