This week I soldered all of the necessary connections onto a stripboard so that we can easily connect all of the servos and the LED strip to the arduino uno board. Here is what the final product looks like. Very small changes may be made to the overall design.
Here is what the top view looks like:
The power rail is the first vertical column of the board. The ground rail is the 3rd vertical column of the board. This was done to avoid the risk of shorting the power and ground rails together by soldering them two rows apart instead of next to each other.
Each servo needs 3 connections: 1 for the signal, one for power, and one for ground. Also, the two servos at the base need to be powered by a higher voltage to allow them to support the weight of the arm.
The first power and ground header pins correspond to the 9V that we will use to drive these two servos at the base and the LED strip. The second power and ground header pins correspond to the 5V that will be used to drive th rest of the servos. The different power sources are disconnected from each other by cutting a hole on the other side of the board where the wires and components are soldered to the board. By disconnecting the copper track, this separates the power pins from each other. The ground pins use the same reference and are thus connected to each other.
The other half of the board corresponds to the driver for the LED strip. It is being driven by 9V.
Here is what the bottom view looks like: