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CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

In cultivating crops, homegrown plants or even in landscaping gardens, one of the most

common problem faced is the emergence of collective ground covering plants, referred to as grass.

Grass is a type of plant from the Poaceae or Gramineae family. It is locally known in the

Philippines as “damo”. It is originally covering the solid ground, and is actually useful to people

in some ways. Lawn grass is often planted on sports fields and in the area around a building

wherein sometimes chemicals and water is used to help lawns to grow. People utilize many types

of grasses as food, including corn, wheat, barley, oats, rice and millet which are cereals, or

common grains whose seeds are used for food and to make alcohol such as beer. Even the sugar

from the sugar cane, is also a plant in the grass family. Moreover, people have grown grasses as

food for farm animals for about 4000 years. People use bamboo to build houses, fences, furniture

and other things. Grass plants can also be used as fuel, to cover roofs, and to weave baskets.

Though most people don't think so, grass shouldn't be cut; it shreds the grass and causes brown

spots on a lawn. Once grass has grown 9 inches, it will cut its self, from the bottom, up from the

tiller. (Chapman & Peat, 1992)

However, grasses are often pertained to as weeds. The term “weed” refers to a plant that is

growing in an undesirable condition or situation. Besides, according to Zimdahl (2013), Oxford

defines weed as any herbaceous plant not valued for use or beauty, growing wild and rank, and

regarded as cumbering the ground or delaying the growth of superior vegetation. Grasses,

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specifically those such as crabgrass, pigweeds, foxtails, witch grass and orchard grass, which often

act as weeds are hindering the growth of plants agriculturally and visually.

Because of their unwanted growth, people thought of ways to get rid of grass weeds.

Traditional ways of weed control were introduced. One method is the hand-weeding, which refers

to pulling out weeds by hand or uprooting weeds by using small hand tool which will control the

weed for15 to 20days. Hand hoein, on the other hand, refers to which entire surface soil is dug to

a shallow depth with the help of hand hoes. After hand hoeing, the field is subjected to drying to

avoid re-establishing of uprooted weeds. Other methods are digging, cutting, burning, and

mowing. (TNAU Agritech Portal, 2013)

Mowing is the cutting of weeds to the ground level. It is usually practiced in non-cropped

areas, lawns and gardens wherein the grass is cut to a uniform height to improve the aesthetic

value.The common mowing tools are sickle, scythe and lawn mower. It is the most common

method of eliminating grass weeds nowadays.

Lawn mowers are machines that use a rotating blade or blades to cut a lawn grass at an

even height or pattern. Lawn mower design has come a long way since the invention of the original

one (LawnEQ, 2012). The original traditional push lawn mower was invented in 1830. Push reel

mowers are simple machine, the gears of which spin a whorl of between five and eight spiral-

shaped blades that pass by a stationary blade at the rear of the mower. The two, working together,

slice the blades of grass to provide a smooth, fine grass surface. Although it is easy and safe to

use, their blades stop cutting when you stop pushing. Moreover, it is quite to use as it does not use

engine to operate. They have limited cutting ability and is not suitable to large and uneven lawns.

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Meanwhile, power lawn mowers are either rotary or reel. These types of lawn mower are

the most popular lawn mowers found around the world. It comes in either gas or electric. The most

common power lawn mower is the rotary lawn mower. Rotary mowers are less expensive and

require less maintenance than its reel counterpart. The second reason is that fact that rotary mowers

have the capability to cut tall swards. They mow through tall grasses and weeds with ease. They

operate either on gas or electricity. Further, small electric powered mowers are either corded or

cordless that runs on rechargeable battery.

Alternatively, ride-on lawn mowers became in demand as the lawns became larger. These

lawn mowers are fitted with seat and controls where the operator can settle and control the lawn

mower. They are basically in between the normal lawn mowers and tractors. Most of these lawn

mowers have manual transmission though there are certain types that have hydrostatic

transmission. Hydrostatic transmissions are more expensive than mechanical transmissions but

they are easier to use and can transmit greater torque to the wheels as compared to a typical

mechanical transmission. The least common drive type, and the most expensive, is electric.

Another type, which are hover mowers, are powered rotary push lawn mowers that utilize

an impeller above the spinning blades to push air downwards, thereby creating an air cushion that

lifts the mower above the ground. The lawn mower then can be easily moved as it floats over the

grass. Hover mowers are built to operate on steep slopes, waterfronts, and high-weeded areas, so

they are often used by golf courses and commercial landscapers. (Nelson, 2012)

In addition to this, the innovative technology brought into effect by continuous

modernization has also driven people to produce more intelligent machines that could eliminate

weed grass in their lawns. Robotic mowers can mow the lawn unsupervised. Simply turn it on and

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let it wander around your lawn cutting the grasses. It is contained by a border wire around the lawn

that defines the area to be mowed. The robot uses this wire to locate the boundary of the area to be

trimmed and in some cases to locate a recharging dock. These types of lawn mowers are becoming

popular especially to those who cannot spare time for mowing their lawn.

However, robotic mowers, which are programmed and are proven to be environmentally

friendly has its disadvantages that may not just damage people with its cost, but also with its

performance. As stated in the website Top Gadgets (2011) robotic mowers are greatly expensive.

Its high price is the main disadvantage that discourages people from buying a robot lawn mower.

Moreover, using this type of lawn mower makes you less active. The fact that you won’t be doing

anything to move the mower minimizes your physical effort and makes you more sedentary. While

this is an advantage for elders and people with a weak health, it may be a disadvantage for those

who used the mowing time as an exercise.

Further, the lack of service and specialists is also a problem. Repairing regular lawn mower

is easy, as electronic or electrical specialists are available at every hour of the day, but a good

technician to fix your robot lawn mower can be hard to find, not to mention that more expensive

as well. And besides, according to most robot lawnmower reviews, the battery of such a mower

lasts very little compared to other mowers, and the random patterns of mowing use even more

battery, meaning they will need to charge more often. Although they head to the charging station

on their own, if they encounter an obstacle, they remain there, which means you will have to

remove the obstacles and make sure they reach to the recharging station. Lastly, it endangers safety

for kids and pets. Being small and wandering along the garden, it may be tempting for children or

pets to jump on it and mistake it for a toy, which could be very dangerous. Additionally, some

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newly improvised robotic mowers have slower movements, and some has their power function

manually operated which could mean a risky chase. (Top Gadgets, 2015)

Nevertheless, robotic intelligence is playing a big role in developing useful products for

the benefit of mankind, with a goal to make lives safer and easier. Due to this, the researchers

created a remote-controlled grass cutting machine which will be with performance and functions

that are more innovative and environmental friendly compared to commercial robotic lawn

mowers. The researchers utilized robotic intelligence, however, with the use of a simple remote-

controlled car, together with materials that can be easily found in electronic shops, which will pass

to be an alternative yet a mower with a more satisfactory function output than the commercial

robotic mower.

The researchers believed that Anda, which stands for “Anti-Damo” remote controlled grass

cutting machine, is a productive innovation that can be improved and highly developed in the

future. It combined the convenience of other past lawn mower inventions, without setting aside

cost-friendliness, performance, exercise and safety.

This study aimed to evaluate the effectivity of Anda as a remote controlled grasscutting

machine. Hence, it sought to answer the following questions:

1.What is the effectivity of the Anda grasscutting machine function in removing weeds

with regards to the height of the grass in a certain area/lawn?

2. How does the grasscutting machine adapt to locations in terms of the distance it travelled

in a minute, and its speed as it run on the following:

a. flat track;

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b. rough track;

c. rocky track?

3. How long is the Anda machine’s total usage time?

4. How long are the Anda machine’s batteries’total charging time?

The researchers made tests to validate the following hypotheses:

1. The Anda grasscutting machine will not be effective in removing the weeds with repect

to the grass’ height in a certain area.

2. The Anda grasscutting machine will not adapt satisfactorily in different locations.

3. The Anda grasscuting machine will not give satisfactory results in terms of time usage

and charging time.

The researchers believed that this study is significant to them for it helps in the discovery

and development of an alternative and user-friendly grass cutting machine that is at the same time,

innovative. Additionally, this study is significant to the future researchers, in order to gain prior

knowledge about the machine and its related concepts. Furthermore, it is of significance especially

to the people who are fond of grass cutting for landscaping and other lawn purposes, for it helps

in making their jobs easier yet not too laid-back. More importantly, this study is of significant

value to the community because aside from its function, it can raise awareness and knowledge of

people in things they can innovate through concepts of engineering and electronics.

The study mainly focused on creating a remote-controlled grass cutting machine that is

portable, and effective in terms of cutting grass while adapting to different locations at a

satisfactory manner. The process of making the machine was supervised by at least four

consultants which guided the step by step assembling of the parts, as well as the improvements to

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be done. Moreover, the Anda machine did not use any robotic programming for it is not necessary

to execute the grass cutting function the researchers foresee, and instead has disadvantages that

may aggravate any compromising qualities of the machine. Meanwhile, the materials for the

product were provided by the researchers and some were easily found in electronic shops. The

researchers also utilized recycled printers for DC motors, remote-controlled cars, and other

considered junks from damaged appliances.

The study was conducted primarily at Bongabon, and Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija,

wherein the making of the product was done specifically at Barangay Sinipit, Bongabon, where

the industrial and electronic technologists, or consultants, are situated; while the parts are initially

engineered with the help of consultants at Cabanatuan City.

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CHAPTER II

METHODOLOGY

The following materials were used in this study: motor driver, 12 volts DC motors obtained

from recycled printer ( one with 12, 000 rpm), eight volts solar panel; bolts, nuts and screws for

fastening, four flat bars, steel epoxy, shrink tube which was used as insulators, chassis alloy for

the machine’s body, two pieces of 7805 ic voltage regulator, two pieces of switch with DPDT

(double pole, double throw) that enables both to be powered by a single supply, RC car controller,

male and female plug, four relays, , circuit board, electric wires, a pair of training wheels and a

pair of another larger ones. The researchers also used a three-coiled spring, 12 volts motorcycle

battery, rubber and gears. Moreover, the researchers utilized tools including hand drill, saw,

soldering iron, soldering lead, wire stripper, Phillips screw, Allen wrench, multimeter, ruler, a

timer, and measuring tape.

The researchers focused on creating a remote controlled grass cutting machine that could

adequately compare to the commercial robotic lawn mower. Having limited prior knowledge about

assembling the parts to create the planned machine, the researchers asked assistance and

supervision from electronic and industrial technologists, for the wirings, and engineering

consultants for the construction of the body. Specifically, the process the researchers conducted

are as follows:

1. Construction of the Grass Cutting Machine. The researchers first planned the body

of the machine and calculated spaces to place between them. Next, using the chassis alloy, screws,

bolts, nuts, and flat bars obtained from an aluminum shop, the researchers cut and drilled holes

with the help of a hand drill and a saw to create the machine’s body. Then, the researchers

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assembled the wheels by attaching it to the body of the lawn mower, with the DC motors and gears

to make its backward-forward, sideward, and reverse actions function. Afterwards, another high

speed DC motor was placed in front part of the mower and a cutter blade was attached to it.

The researchers then assembled the remote-controlled panel and wired the relays, which

are responsible for the controller commands in the motion of the machine. The relay circuit was

attached to the remote-controlled panel board. The DC motors were also attached on the RC panel

via wirings, for the steering function of the wheels. Then, an antenna was wired to the panel which

will increase the range of effectivity of the controller’s command.

Subsequently, the researchers placed two switch buttons on the mower; the first one, for

the motor drivers, and the second one, for the rotation of the cutter blade. After that, the researchers

connected the batteries, with a total of 24 volts; 12 volt-battery for the control panel relay drive,

and another 12 volt-battery for the DC motor responsible for steering and motion of wheels.

Afterwards, the researchers placed a shock absorber, using bolts and nuts inside a three-coiled

spring fastened to both sides of the front wheels.in order to ease the machine’s movement in rough

surfaces.

Lastly, the researchers installed the solar panel and fastened it on a flat bar using screws,

and assembled its wirings to be connected on the power supply of a 12-volt battery so that it serves

as a temporary charger and prevent total draining.

2. Testing the Effectivity of Grasscutting Function. The researchers tested the machine’s

grass cutting function by means of placing it in a grassy area wherein heights of certain grass

samples are already measured beforehand. The researchers conducted three trials to determine how

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short it can cut the weed grasses. The resulting measurements was then subtracted with the original

measurement in order to find it out.

3. Testing the Location Adaptivity of the Machine. The researchers assessed the

performance of the grass cutting machine by means of placing it on different locations one at a

time, namely: rocky, flat, and slightly moist locations. The researchers measured the distance they

travelled within the farthest range of the controller.

4. Testing the Machine’s Total Usage Time. The researchers tested the total up time of

the machine by means of draining its battery by using it continuously for hours until it shut down

for charging. The researchers also recorded its up time with and without solar panel.

5. Testing the Machine’s Total Charging Time. After testing the total usage time of the

machine and draining its battery, the researchers tested for the batteries’ total charging time.

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CHAPTER III

RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS

The researchers tested the effectivity of the Anda or “Anti-Damo” remote-controlled grass

cutting machine, in terms of its grass cutting function, location adaptivity, usage and charging

time, as well as its controller’s range. The researchers conducted these tests, and the findings are

as follows:

1. Testing the Effectivity of Grasscutting Function. The researchers conducted three

trials for threee samples of grass cut by the machine, namely; Trial 1, Trial 2, and Trial 3.

Table 1. Effectivity of Grass Cutting Function

PERCENTAGE
OF GRASS
HEIGHT CUT HEIGHT THE
INITIAL GRASS FINAL GRASS
TRIAL NO. BY THE MACHINE
HEIGHT (cm) HEIGHT (cm)
MACHINE (cm) CUTS
(%)

1 33 4 29 88

2 15 3 12 80

3 13 2 11 85

Computed mean: 84

Based on the table, the initial grass height for trial 1 is 33 cm, and the final grass height is

4 cm, with 29 cm or 88% as the height cut by the machine. Meanwhile, Trial 2 has an initial grass

height of 15 cm, which had a final measure of 3 cm after the machine cut a height of 12 cm, or

80%. On the other hand, the initial grass height of Trial 3 is 13 cm, reduced to a final height of 2

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cm, as the machine cut 11 cm, or 85% off it. The total mean value, or the average height percentage

the machine can cut equated to 84%.

3. Testing the Location Adaptivity of the Machine. The researchers assessed the

performance of the grass cutting machine by means of placing it on different locations one at a

time, namely: rocky, flat, and moist locations. The researchers measured the distance they travelled

within the farthest range of the controller.

Table 2. Location Adaptivity of the Machine

DISTANCE REACHED (in


LOCATION/TRACK
ft)

Flat 70.3

Rough 32

Rocky 8

The table shows that the machine ran a distance of 70.3 ft in a flat track, 32 ft in a rough

track and only 8 ft in a rocky track.

4. Testing the Machine’s Total Usage Time. The researchers tested the total up time of

the machine by means of draining its battery by using it continuously for hours until it shut down

for charging. The researchers recorded its up time with and without solar panel.

Table 3. Machine’s Total Up/Usage Time

Total Usage Time Without


Total Usage Time with a Solar Panel
Solar Panel
(hours)
(hours)

12 8

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The above findings show that the total usage time of the Anda machine with a solar panel

in use is 12 hours, while the total usage time without the solar panel installed is 8 hours.

5. Testing the Machine’s Total Charging Time. The researchers tested for the separate

sets of batteries’ total charging time; identified as the 12-volt relay drive power supply, and the

12-volt DC motor power supply.

Table 4. Machine’s Total Charging Time

Charging Time (hours)

12-volt relay drive power supply 12-volt DC motor power supply

6 3

Based on the above table, the charging time for the 12-volt relay drive power supply

is six hours, while a total of three charging hours goes for the 12-volt DC motor power supply.

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CHAPTER IV

CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Conclusion

Based on the results, the researchers concluded that Anda Remote-Controlled Grass

Cutting Machine is effective in cutting 84% of the initial grass heights. Furthermore, the

researchers observed that it showed satisfactory location adaptivity among the three different

tracks: namely, flat, rough, and rocky. Moreover, the researchers conclude that the usage time of

the machine is adequate for it to perform tasks, with or without solar panel. In addition to this, the

charging time of its power supplies is uncompromising, given that it is less that the usage time the

machine can run with.

Recommendations

The researchers recommend further study on how to improve the effectivity of the

product. Specifically, the researchers address the following points to be noted:

1. Wheels. The researchers advise modification of the wheels to make the machine more

adaptive to rocky surfaces. The researchers recommend the use of shock absorbers, or spiked

wheels that can run off bumpy roads more effectively. Further enhancements should also be made

to the front wheels for the reverse function, to prevent it from barely scratching the ground.

2. Chassis Alloy. The researchers recommend using much harder chassis alloys for the

body of the machine, in order to make it sturdier.

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3. Safety. The researchers recommend using the machine with proper distance in order to

prevent accidents such as flying debris of stones and other materials the rotating cutter blade may

run into. Likewise, it is advised to make the cutter blade detachable for safe storage purposes.

4. Resources. The researchers also recommend utilization of scraps and other junk

materials which can be recycled, to make the product more cost-friendly.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

The researchers, with their deepest gratitude, with all the sleepless nights and restless days,

would like to acknowledge the following individuals who helped in the accomplishment of this

study:

To the parents, who extended their moral and financial support for the completion of this

study, the sole completion of the machine won’t be possible without you;

To our respected consultants, who assisted the researchers in the technical necessities in

relation to this project, specifically to our engineering supervisors, Mr. Ariel Cruz and Mr.

Romnick Sarmiento, who provided the adequate support in planning and making the device; as

well as to our electronics and industrial technologists Mr. Fernando Luis, and Mr. Joselito

Pangilinan, whose knowledge and skills we believe are the best ones in Bongabon, Nueva Ecija,—

we dedicate our greatest thanks, especially on your determination and passion which fueled the

success of our project and gave light to its accomplishment;

And last but not the least, to the Great God Almighty for providing the strength and

knowledge; He who provides in everything, always!

The researchers would like to express the sincerest appreciation!

S12-Milk Thistle
S.Y. 2017-2018

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. Chapman G.P. & Peat W.E. 1992. An introduction to the grasses. Oxford: CAB

Internat.

2. Cheplick G.P. 1998. Population biology of grasses. Cambridge University Press.

3. Weed-Crop Competition: A Review. Page 108. Robert L. Zimdahl. Ivens, G. W., and F.

Mlowe. 1980.

4. Weed Management: Physical Method. TNAU Agritech Portal.

agritech.tnau.ac.in/agriculture/agri_weemgt_physicalmethods.html

5. Types of Lawn Mowers. Nelson, Lawn EQ. October 6, 2012.

6. Pros and Cons of Robot Lawn Mowers. Aiden Bradley. Top Gadgets. August 10, 2015.

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APPENDICES

A. Schematic Diagrams

Fig. 1. Initial Plan for the Machine construction

Fig. 2. Relay Drive

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Fig. 2. Remote Control Panel

Fig. 3. Wiring Diagram

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B. Materials

Pliers Phillip Screw Solar Panel

USB Port Panel Board Alligator Clips

Tools Bolts and Nuts Training


Wheels

Training Wheels Measuring Tape Remote Controller


Tape
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C. Methods

Constructing the Machine

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Testing the Machine’s Location Adaptivity

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Testing the Machine’s Grass Cutting Function

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