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News and information about the Neato XV-11 Robotic Vacuum. All discussion and troubleshooting questions go here.
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Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

September 9th, 2014, 4:02 am

That assumes an active component instead of the passive linkage confirmed by German member above.

[edit] actual operation shown in video below and at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7usMO-ecFJw&feature=player_embedded
What we don't know is what that white part, to which the bar pivots, is exactly, and whether it moves and just how it is coupled to the body. I would imagine it just has a pivot at the other end not visible inside the wheel well. It adjusts the angle as the wheel moves up and down on the see-saw suspension, keeping the bar end (in the downward arc) on the floor plane same as the main wheel contact point.
If it is passive, with no powered actuator, there would seem to be a very limited set of possibly useful motions.
Maybe an M.E. could be more definitive. Takes familiarity with a lot mechanisms.
I expect some fancy CAD software could simulate the motions for different linkages, but it is not my field. You can make a flat model out of paper and pin the parts together to play with them, circles and lines, test various theories.
We need an animation like they make for the odd Wankel engine with its crazy geometry.
If you think this VR mechanism is obscure, take a look at the sewing machine which ties knots in threads just by appearing to move up and down. Over a hundred years old.
Last edited by glnc222 on September 23rd, 2014, 7:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

September 23rd, 2014, 1:03 pm

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

September 24th, 2014, 7:39 am

I like this little leg, it's clever. Would be perfect to help my Neato go over certain edge... Could it be backwards compatible ??

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

September 24th, 2014, 10:47 am

I think it's for rug or threshold climbing....btw nice idea.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

September 24th, 2014, 12:54 pm

Can a Neato be modified to add a similar feature? The wheel well construction appears a little different on the VR200, perhaps with a wider body, as the levers are on the inside face; Neato's wheels fit tightly against the inside face. The BotVac wheel could be yet another situation. It is likely the VR200 is some offshoot of BotVac design, as the VR100 was a variant of the XV.
There does appear to be room for thin, metal levers on the outside edge of the wheels on XV's, attached to the outside of the case. There are other ways to increase wheel traction, though, such as different treads.

It is not attractive to modify the Neato wheel as they are not supplied separately from the entire drive motor assembly (a screw would have to be put through it to mount the lever). As shown in the mods list main page replacement wheels can be made from common plastic plumbing parts. All such modifications are of use only to folks with some interest in crafts and shop work etc. They obviously void warranties. [edit] Separate wheels (no drive assembly) listed at RobotShop, but not in stock October 2014. $8 each.[edit]

Without a demonstration of the effect of this Vorwerk feature, I would not assume it is very effective. The over-all engineering of these devices has proven limited in various ways, and personally I would be a little skeptical. It is interesting the mechanism is shown but no demonstration of improved navigation. These companies have a problem with improvements revealing problems in older models, more than other categories of consumer goods (see cell phones for example). Maybe it stems from their position vis a vis full size vacuums, which they have not succeeded in replacing. Dyson's long reluctance to enter the business reflects this, but they have finally jumped in. Whatever the limitations, sales must have grown too much to ignore.
Last edited by glnc222 on October 30th, 2014, 12:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

October 30th, 2014, 11:42 am

In my opion the front brush should be closer to the rotation point (or 2 brushes).

Now the VR200 can clean very good in the corner but very bad around table legs (size 4"x4" in my case).
If the VR200 goes clockwise around the leg the brush is very far from the nesessary point of cleaning.

But if the software is a little bit better there is chance solve that problem (outside corner clean).

For people with animals could the ultrasonic sensor be a problem and they have to use VR100, botvac.

I test him a little bit and he works very quite and do good job.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

October 30th, 2014, 12:41 pm

The sensors may not be optimal for keeping the side brush against a chair leg in a complete circle. Very complex turning in a way which holds the side brush against the leg. The robot pivots on point in the center and the brush is at a corner. Hard to program.

Have you observed any effect of the unusual lever on the drive wheels?

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

November 3rd, 2014, 4:18 am

During normal driving there is no different to the old one. The arms moving like the piston arms from steam train.
Only if there is a no more trackion in case of high carpet or an obstacle in his way he goes over like a man with crutches.
This arms lift him over high obstacles.
The could use the lidar to look for the form of leg and try to pass in angles of 90°.
If there is a round leg you have no chance to clean close enough.

Sometime I wish me a little more random parts inside of the program because there are some places which are never cleaned and more of people they disign vacs like VORWERK and try to be a little bit better then the others.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

November 3rd, 2014, 5:50 am

F_Robot wrote:Program:
The could use the lidar to look for the form of leg and try to pass in angles of 90°.
If there is a round leg you have no chance to clean close enough.

I don't recall the exact number, but there is a minimum width that an obstruction needs to be before the Lidar sees it. If it's too narrow, it can only be detected by the bumper.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

March 1st, 2015, 1:58 pm

There is a thread on the German roboter-forum reporting that funny pole-vaulting lever added to the VR200 may cause rubbing and damage to the finish on high door thresholds, door sills. Some things should not be climbed. Be careful what you wish for.
[url]Muss ich mal im Baumarkt schauen aber denke nicht dass das was bringt. Naja eigentlich am Sauger schließlich stellt der sich ja so steil hin.[/url]

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

March 28th, 2015, 3:00 pm

Page in the VR200 User Guide shows dust bin feature to empty with a vacuum hose.
First step towards a self-empty addition in the future. Such a port on the bottom is on an Ecovacs model competing with Karcher. This allows the robot to use its driving wheels to maneuver the port into connection with a suction docking base instead of complex mechanics in the base.
VR200 User Guide

Such features show there are all sorts of things which can be added to these robots, just at much higher expense and prices. There is a question whether they add very much to the cleaning application over the basic Neato Robotics models. The real problem with these devices is navigating furniture and carpets which obstruct travel. Not to mention the limited dirt extraction power. For the kind of price Vorwerk gets I would look seriously at Dyson.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

July 26th, 2015, 10:20 pm

One user reported the VR200 messes with wires and cables on the floor much more than other models, catches and drags etc. That pole-vault lever thing added to the drive wheels has some negatives besides whatever positives, which are not very clear in the first place.
Another user reported problems with a door sill and adding some ramp material, just the sort of thing the enhanced wheels would supposedly eliminate.

All moot in the U.S. where Worwerk does not distribute. I always wonder whether that is a term of their deal with Neato Robotics (which they own), or just preferring to have a dealer presence and lacking any position overall in vacuums in the U.S. The competition is certainly tough here with all the major brands present. I wonder if they use "exclusive" dealers in Germany, selling only Vorwerk products, their own stores. Apparently a household name over there. The Karcher Germain company seems to take a different position on global distribution.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

July 27th, 2015, 7:05 am

Vorwerk ventures does not own Neato completely. I guess they have around 30% stake and now are able to put two of their men on Neato's board. See http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases ... 89525.html . I guess the deal until the Botvac series was that Neato may not sell on European markets in order not to spoil the prices. Now that there is more competition in Europe, Vorwerk allows Neato to sell in Europe in order not to loose too much market share in the mainstream segment. Traditionally you could buy Vorwerk only from their sales representatives. Now you can also buy them in Vorwerk stores and order online :) Does Kärcher still deliver its robotic vacuums directly to the US or are just some specialized stores importing them?

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

July 27th, 2015, 1:12 pm

I think Karcher is just on-line from certain dealers, who could be overseas. Vorwerk did expand venture capital to 51 per cent a year or so ago, and Neato was in the red, and needed capital for product development. Vorwerk seemed to be expanding in Europe more outside Germany from who seems to post about them. Vorwerk does have a brand to protect in many products, compared to Neato limited to robots; I have wondered if that is a factor. Robots are an unusual market but evolving. Most interesting is Dyson's entry; the market may be getting too big for them to ignore. There are high-end vacuum specialty stores in the U.S. which have carried Neato along with the more expensive European brands, with demo units and lots of in-store service etc. One would think they would like Vorwerk if they could get it.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

May 18th, 2016, 6:27 pm

Bought this vr200 in Hamburg while I was running the marathon,
I have had nothing but trouble
Firstly the battery goes red on a charge and stay red, (nothing about this in the manual)
Secondly the machine stops working and is totally not responsive ,

After several phone calls to the shop in Hamburg they suggest that I have to post it back for a full refund

When did get it working it did a great job, I had to unscrew the battery and unplug the battery from the machine.
I think I was unlucky but certainly there isn't any support in ireland yet .
Buyer beware !
It is how ever a solid built machine ,
The dust compartment does fill fast however and this can stop the machine doing its job as it Will return to base.
This machine also gets stuck on carpet and under sofas .

What can I say after a dozen calls to Germany I am now returning it back sadly


Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

May 21st, 2016, 6:45 pm

Now the real question is if we can get the software to run on Botvac D. I expect much better algorithm from Vorwerk, since they seem to have much higher standard than Neato.

Re: Vorwerk Kobold VR200 just announced!

November 20th, 2018, 5:43 am

How did these robots age? Are they still 'a thing', or did they get totally surpassed by Neato?
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