Tracked crawler rov



As a builder of numerous ROV systems, (nearly twenty years worth) I am a big fan

of open development and believe that open development is the best course

for the robotic world as a whole. It was quite exciting to find an Open ROV

link on Ebay. Over the years I have met very few robotic builders and fewer

underwater robot builders. It was quite exciting to see this many like minded people

on one site.

Currently I run Gator Tactical, We are presently testing our 2014 gator work class

robot. This robot will swim and or crawl on the bottom. It is the first underwater

remotely operated robot to have zero metal signature (this allows the robot

to house a magnetometer, sonar, pulse induction detector and ground penetrating

radar at the same time) The aim of this design is to clean up mine fields above and

below the surface.

I remain fore ever a fan of inspection class light weight rov's ( a+ for home built) because they

are cost effective, portable, easily transported, and often have less repair and build time.

With that said I have about 40 feet worth of small poly plastic tracks free to any members

of Open Rov. These tracks are roughly 2 inches wide 1/4" thick and each link is around 1".

These are very light weight, strong and can be adjusted by adding or removing links.

The tracks crawl on plastic gears available from Rexnord Conveyor Co. I have also found

these travel well around nylon skate wheels. If any one is interested. They are free to

good homes. I made several small robots that traveled on this type of track.

Tracked robots have positive benefits and negative drawbacks over prop robots

such as speed, control, amperage, bottom time, and payload.



Ty, Very interested in the work you have done with crawlers. I’m working on a crawler rov for surfzone and near shore access. Nor wanting to reinvent the wheel (or track), do you have a website or any documentation on your rovs?
I’m also interested in the track you mentioned in your post - how do I go about taking them off your hands?
Thanks for your time.


I still have about thirty feet of the rexnord track
Here in TempletonCa California. I’m not sure
Where you are located but if you pay shipping I can
Arrange to ship you some. What size robot are you
Building? Entering the water through the surf you
Are going to want to make your crawler heavy and
As low profile as possible so it can stay on the bottom
While traversing under the surf.
In the past on smaller Rov,s I have used wide
Mountain bike tires by simply cutting off some of the
Side wall they will travell and track well on smaller
Solider rubber wheels like those used on furniture dollies
Or lawn mowers. I try to find the widest tires with the most aggressive
Tread and then find eight of the smaller wheels that will ride inside
Them width wise. Then you can plan your wheel base to place
Your axils leaving adjustment space for proper tension.
It is also critical to try and keep your alignment as true as possible.
When it comes to reliability, cost and ease of maintenance
This method is the best I have found. This simple trick will give you
A nice looking reliable track. On my work class rovs I use custom
Built Kevlar banded tracks that we designed in house they are
Very strong and have incredible traction though they cost several
Thousand per track. The rexnord track I have worked great for lighter
Robots though it is smooth hard plastic so I coated the surface of each
Link with rubber tread using epoxy. The rexnord links can make a track
About a foot long at the smallest length or a tracks up to about
Six feet long. I have used the rexnord track on many crawlers up to about
Twenty pounds. Heavier than that and your going to need to go
To another method like the tires. Give me a call if you want to arrange
For some of the rexnord track. Ty 8057126199.