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ServoCity's blog
Posted by ServoCity | Nov 29, 2014 @ 10:26 AM | 1,439 Views
Check out the Stacker Robot starring in the Golden Ticket Video:
ServoCity Golden Ticket Giveaway (0 min 57 sec)

View all of our Cyber Monday deals: https://www.servocity.com/ServoCity_...Flyer_2014.pdf
Posted by ServoCity | Nov 21, 2014 @ 12:42 PM | 1,244 Views
Cyber Monday 2014 is just days away, and we're offering HOT deals for our customers.
From a chance to win $500, to savings up to 85% off - we've got some awesome promotions going on!

Don't miss the opportunity to SAVE BIG by shopping at ServoCity on December 1st.

Posted by ServoCity | Oct 23, 2014 @ 04:36 PM | 1,849 Views
This past week a few of our R&D crew had fun building a drag racer out of Actobotics. It's a pretty simple design and would be a fun project to duplicate and then customize.

Watch the video to see the dragster in action "off the line" and check out some more close-up pictures below. We'd love to hear what you think in the comments!

Dragracer (0 min 11 sec)

Here is a parts list for those of you interested in building something similar. We'd love to see any improvements or customization to our design!

1 - 4TMD: Foam Wheels http://www.servocity.com/html/4_00__foam_wheels.html
1 – 638286: 1,621 RPM Planetary Gearmotor (http://www.servocity.com/html/1621_r..._planetar.html)
3 – 585436: 45° Channel Brackets (http://www.servocity.com/html/45o_si...nel_brack.html)
1 – 585426: 45° Dual Angle Bracket (http://www.servocity.com/html/45o_du...l_bracket.html)
1 – 585412: 4.62" Aluminum Beam (http://www.servocity.com/html/aluminum_beams.html)
2 – 585580: Flat Triple Channel Bracket (http://www.servocity.com/html/flat_t...racket__5.html)
1 – 585454: 12" Aluminum Channel (http://www.servocity.com/html/12__al...__585454_.html)
1 – 615406: 6mm bore, 24T bevel gear (http://www.servocity.com/html/32_pit...vel_gears.html)
1 – 615398: 1/4" bore, 24T bevel gear (http://www.servocity.com/html/32_pit...vel_gears.html)
2 – 634074: 2.5" Long 1/4" D-shafts (http://www.servocity.com/html/1_4__p...-...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Aug 01, 2014 @ 03:33 PM | 1,893 Views
Recently we had the opportunity to share a story in Robot Magazine, about a company we find inspiring and are honored to have worked with on different projects.

It’s always encouraging to learn about companies that are harnessing robotic technology to better the lives of others. Richardson Products, Inc. is a medical equipment company that is going above and beyond to serve their customers, and we’ve been honored to work with them over the last several years. The company is a family owned and operated business that manufactures and distributes high quality home medical equipment. The owner, Richard Richardson, is described by his employees as a man of extreme integrity – and their company mission is a reflection of his core values.

Robert Rossi is the head of the electrical engineering department at Richardson Products and he is supported by Chris Daley and John Reinbold. Together they design and build innovative products that have a significant positive impact on the assistive technology field. They manufacture a variety of different robots, trays, seats, electronics, and specialized powered devices.

One of the robots manufactured by Richardson Products is a device called the Meal Buddy – a robotic arm feeding system (pictured above). The base of the system is a ServoCity bottom mount gearbox (SPG785A-BM) with full metal gears and 915 oz-in of torque. This robust base unit provides a panning motion allowing the...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | May 02, 2014 @ 01:00 PM | 2,816 Views
We recently asked our customer and friend, Mike Mikkleson (http://blog.m2-photo.com/) to guest blog for us. He came up with something really cool, and we wanted to share it with the RCGroups community as well. Check it out!

Building an Actobotics Kite Aerial Photography Suspension Rig

The Kite Aerial Photography community is one of those groups where the members are sort of eclectic, and get tons of enjoyment from capturing unique aerial imagery by hanging a camera from a kite. Anyone who has tried KAP gets not only the satisfaction of flying kites, but the reward of seeing a bird’s eye view in the images. I was hooked from the first session, and have been flying cameras on a string ever since. You’ve decided that you want to be part of “that” group, and want more information on ways to get started. As a KAP nerd, I think I speak for the entire group by saying, “Welcome!”

Click here to view the Kite Aerial Photography flickr group

People have been using Kites to capture aerial photography for over a hundred years. George R. Lawrence made a name for himself using a series of kites to lift a 50 pound camera in 1906 to document post-earth quake San Francisco. Most modern day kite photographers use a suspension rig which was designed by Pierre Picavet way back in 1912. What has changed is the quality of the cameras, the design of the rigs, and even instant gratification in seeing the images through wireless networks. I will focus on the actual rig that...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Apr 22, 2014 @ 10:01 AM | 2,356 Views

Instructables Motorized Camera Dolly Project
Last week we sponsored an Instructables Project and we are excited to finally share the finished build with you!
The Instructables team did an awesome job of designing and implementing this project and we hope you enjoy reading about it as well as trying it out for yourself. Our line of Actobotics precision building components are extremely versatile and there are countless ways to build a similar rig - however, this detailed project log from Randy will give you a good overview of how to get started...enjoy!

“Recently I received the opportunity to try out Servo City's Actobotics build system. While I could have used it to build a great many things, I ultimately decided to make a programmable camera dolly system. This device allows me to create time lapse films with complex movements as well as program repeatable automated real-time camera movements. In other words, this rig allows you to smoothly film complex camera movements in time lapse and real-time.”
- Randy, Instructables

For project details as well as step by step building instructions visit: http://www.instructables.com/id/Robo...-Dolly-System/

...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Feb 28, 2014 @ 02:55 PM | 2,862 Views
ALERT: Super awesome customer project photos ahead!!
So we've been asking our customers to send in their project photos to receive 10% off their next order (details here if you want to participate: http://www.servocity.com/html/promotions.html) Anyway, we've been blown away by the cool pictures and links that you've been sending us...so we wanted to share.

Enjoy! And if you have a project photo to share, send it our way - marketing@servocity.com.

Another great build for his timelapse fleet from Mike Mikkelson. Here is his recent eMotimo TB3 Hyperlapse Rover. To see more photos visit his blog http://bit.ly/1poz89J.

Stephen S.'s phase two of his solar tracker mount. This supports a full-scale 158W 27” x 56” solar panel.

A recent project from Mike where he built an RC rover utilizing our PT785-S to achieve close up, wide angle wildlife shots.
...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Feb 07, 2014 @ 11:27 AM | 2,760 Views

(This article is from our recent blog post, found here: http://www.servocity.com/blog/)
...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Jan 31, 2014 @ 11:31 AM | 2,700 Views

Our techs are always working on projects, both at work and at home. They are also constantly interacting with customers and learning about the roadblocks and issues that many RC builders face...and helping them come up with solutions. We try to post a Tech Tip on our social media pages about 1 a week. But we also keep a running archive of them here: http://www.servocity.com/html/tech_tips.html This week, we thought we'd post a few of the most viewed tech tips. Hopefully you will find one or two of them helpful! If you have a topic you'd like to see covered in a tech tip, let us know in the comments!

1-14-2014: Another use for flat snips
As hobbyists, we all have our favorite tools that tend to get used more than others in the toolbox. Some even get used for intentions other than what they were designed for. One of our common misused tools is the flat snips. These snips work just fine cutting wires, zip ties and other small items, however they also work well removing brass pinion gears from servos, and even tightening up ¼” diameter aluminum standoffs. Our brass servo pinion gears have a broached spline that is a very snug fit when going onto the servo. This does mean however that it’s a bit difficult to remove the servo pinion gear from the servo if needed. Using the flat snips, you can grab down in two valleys of the gear and wiggle the gear back and forth to remove it without damaging the gear or the servo. The tool can be used in a similar fashion to hold an...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Jan 23, 2014 @ 11:18 AM | 2,492 Views
We are thrilled to have a guest blogger this week - Scott Fitzgerald. We think you will really enjoy his project/story!

I would like to introduce myself to the ServoCity Online Community. My name is Scott Fitzgerald. I am a Commercial Pilot with a background in Aerospace Engineering. Over the past few years, I have been an active parent/volunteer in my local school district promoting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education.

My work with the school began while participating in my employer’s educational outreach program. This quickly evolved into something much broader and has ultimately inspired our school district to launch a curriculum enhancement initiative to place more emphasis on STEM education. Our projects have received some great media coverage which is fun for the kids and promotes awareness in the community. Projects include three near space balloon launches, a radio controlled airplane design project, an electrical energy demonstrator, converting children’s ride-on vehicles to solar power and our latest endeavor, the Planetary Rover Project.

Here is video footage of the space balloon project.
NSB Columbus on NBC Nighty News (0 min 28 sec)

...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Jan 10, 2014 @ 11:13 AM | 3,255 Views
We’re excited for 2014 because we have a lot planned! Below we listed the Top 14 happenings we’re enthusiastic about in no particular order.

1. Release of Actobotics™ Kits
2. Awarding the ServoCity Scholarship (http://www.servocity.com/html/servoc...holarship.html)
3. Going to the Bay Area Maker Faire
4. New Actobotics components
5. Launching our Customer Project Center (http://www.servocity.com/html/custom...ct_upload.html)
6. Shipping method improvements
7. Sponsoring more Fly-ins and R/C Events (http://www.servocity.com/html/event_...uest_form.html)
8. Contests, Contests, Contests!
9. Launching the Official ServoCity Blog - we've got some great guest bloggers in the line up
10. More and Bigger Giveaways - like us on Facebook for chances to win (www.facebook.com/ServoCity)
11. Yoda the shop cat turns 7!
12. Big Sales! - be sure to sign up for our newsletter to be notified (http://www.servocity.com/html/customer_page.html)
13. New Video Tutorials
14. ServoCity Forum Launch

Yoda turns 7!

We appreciate the support we received from the R/C community in 2013 and look forward to growing our relationship with you in 2014!! www.servocity.com
Posted by ServoCity | Nov 25, 2013 @ 02:21 PM | 2,864 Views
Good afternoon,
Cyber Monday is just one week away! Be sure to visit www.ServoCity.com for deals that can't be beat!
FREE SHIPPING on orders over $25 (use discount code: FREESHIP)
Savings up to 80% OFF select items such as servos, wiring, connectors, controllers, ServoBlocks, horn packs and much more!
Remember, friends don't let friends miss a big sale like this...spread the word!

Posted by ServoCity | Nov 21, 2013 @ 10:34 AM | 3,434 Views

We have recently revamped our line of Servo Power Gearboxes! Our gearboxes have always been top-of-the-line and super powerful (up to 3,402 oz-in of torque!) but now offer upgraded features and a more durable construction.

For starters, all of the servo power gearboxes that use an external potentiometer are now digital rather than analog. Digital servos provide more torque, higher precision, faster response times and are fully programmable. The programmable features allow the user to tailor the servo to perfectly fit various applications.
...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Nov 14, 2013 @ 11:38 AM | 3,201 Views

The decision between NiCAD and NiMH batteries can be confusing. Choosing the correct battery for your application is critical. When making this decision you may need to ask yourself the following questions:
1. How much room do I have?
2. How much weight can my application handle?
3. How many amps will I be using under full load?
4. How much “run-time” do I need?
5. How fast do I need to recharge?

NiCAD (Nickel-Cadmium) and NiMH (Nickel-Metal Hydride) are two very different types of batteries. Both types must be handled differently from one another in regards to charging and discharging procedures and philosophies.

In general, NiMH batteries cannot handle the high rate of charges or discharges (typically over 1.5-2 amps) that NiCAD batteries can. Many modelers use high rate, peak detection or time-based chargers to charge NiCAD batteries. Such chargers are NOT recommended for NiMH batteries (unless otherwise specified in the charger or battery literature) as they can cause permanent damage to the NiMH cells. Also, NiMH batteries will not perform well in high rate discharge applications, typically providing only a small fraction of the rated capacity in these instances.

NiMH batteries also have approximately twice the self-discharge rate of NiCAD batteries when in an unused state. For example, when your radio is off, a 1650mah NiMH battery can discharge itself nearly twice as quickly as a NiCAD battery, typically within one week. Therefore, you must charge...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Oct 31, 2013 @ 10:16 AM | 3,567 Views

Continuous Rotation Servos
We frequently receive tech calls with questions concerning servo modification: most often, continuous rotation. So we decided today's blog should cover some information about this servo mod and how it works.

When building a robot or wheeled platform, servos can often be used to drive wheels. In many instances, servos offer better power and are more compact than comparable motors and come with an electronic “speed control” (H-bridge) already attached to control the speed and direction of rotation. Once this modification is performed, your servo will operate as an “open loop” system. This means that the feedback from the potentiometer will be disconnected. The servo will now operate like a gearmotor with a speed control attached to control the speed and direction of rotation. You will be able to control it forward and reverse proportionally.
...Continue Reading
Posted by ServoCity | Oct 23, 2013 @ 12:05 PM | 3,720 Views

Hi Friends,
We've been a part of the RCGroups community as a sponsor and contributor for nearly 2 years, and we have really enjoyed it! We recently decided to begin posting regular blogs on RCG that will include customer photos, build logs, new product announcements, guest articles, helpful tech tips, and more. We hope you'll stop by every now and then to see what we're up to. Thanks for continuing to support our business...we are very grateful!

If you haven't heard of ServoCity, please take a few minutes to check out our selection of R/C items and mechanical components; we're confident you'll like what you see! www.servocity.com

Founded in 1995, we've been in the hobby business for nearly 2 decades. Our mission is to provide high quality products paired with fast and friendly service to our customers around the globe. We are located in the "heart of America" : Winfield, Kansas - and no, we don't ride horses to work (though several of us have them) Our central location offers optimized transit times to customers on both coasts.

If you ever have any questions be sure to give us a shout at 620-221-0123 or e-mail: tech@servocity.com / sales@servocity.com. We are here to help!

We looking forward to building a relationship with you.

Warm Regards,
Lauren Lewis
ServoCity Marketing Director