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The HeathKit Hero-1 Restoration Project

I'm currently restoring my Heathkit Hero-1. I originally bought and built this robot way back in 1984. It's been sitting in my attic for the past 20 years. Amazingly it has survived the freezing and blistering temperatures of the the attic.

The four original 6 volt gel-cell batteries were completely dead. Fortunately I was able to find an exact replacement for them. After installing the new batteries I connected the robot's charger and powered it up. The glow of the charging light indicated that power system was still working. After charging them overnight I flipped the robot's power switch and got the synthetic sounding "Ready" from the speech system. After some cleaning and lubrication I had all the motors in the arm and the drive working like new.

This Hero-1 is fully equipped with all the options. It has the memory expansion, Basic interpreter, demo software PROMs, serial interface, wireless remote control, as well as the speech card and robotic arm.

I'm planning on doing a few upgrades this year. I looking into the possibility of incorporating a Parallax Propeller micro controller as well as a few memory upgrades for its own 6808 microprocessor.

Stay tuned for further developments. If you have your own Hero-1 I would love to hear from you!





Copyright © 2012 Steve Norris. All Rights Reserved.

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