6 out of 50 GoPiGo3 Motors will not go backwards

Bought 25 GoPiGo3 (before the merger) Forward, left, right all work, but backwards will just get a brief stutter. Checked cables, magnetic sensors, etc. Same with Drive, Bloxter or Python.

Though also that I had one bad “red” board, but it turned out to be a faulty Raspberry Pi.
No biggie, just using 18 bots, this quarter.



I wonder why? We’re you able to figure out what was wrong with the Pi?

NO, it won’t boot by itself. Tried with 2 different microSD cards. We have 2 kits that haven’t been built yet. Tried one of those Pis and bot works fine. BTW I tried to use a Model 1B+ v2 and 2 B v 1.1 and neither would work with the bot. Ok by themselves. Not surprising, I guess.

Wonder if the Cubelets Toy company will get me some new motors? Not holding my breath. :innocent:


Have you asked them? support@modrobotics.com

My experiences with DI and DI-ModRobotics have been 100% positive, including broken motor replacement, so I am waiting with bated breath to hear the next chapter in your story.

They know (November). Also asked (3 times) if they would continue to support the GoPiGo3 and the software (Bloxter and their version of Jupyter Notebooks).

Silence (could be my email is failing – also Chris and John are no longer there)



While you wait for resolution:

My guess is that the gear backlash is high on those particular motors.

(Yes, the instructions say not to manually turn the motors by turning the wheels, but …)

It may be possible to entice the motors to overcome the backlash by holding the bot in the air, and gently turning the wheel in the forward direction, then gently in the reverse direction … lots of times, until reversing from the forward direction takes the same amount of force as turning forward.

If a gentle turn effort will not start the turning in reverse, then turn it in the forward direction a few revolutions and then try to reverse again. Once it is turning in the reverse direction, keep turning as long as it does not freeze up.

(Also make sure the wheel hub is not pushed in too tightly against the spacer, and motor. Sometimes this affects one direction more than another.)

Hey, thanks. Good idea. I’ve been so busy with the kids scrambling around that I just switch bots when this happens. I see them once/week for a 40 minute class. They all have Chromebooks. Some even work. For those that don’t they have some Pc’s who might work for awhile But then lose the wifi connection a lot. Resetting both the Bot and the PC (or Chromebook takes time. Security software really slows things down. So, if the kids can get 10 or 20 minutes of “working time” that’s it. By next week they’ve forgotten the number of their Bot.

Elevated sense of humor is a must. I really don’t know how the teachers do it 8 to 5. Also, in our community, parents sometimes bring in a lawyer for the parent -teacher conferences. No pressure, of course.


Hello Carl,
I’ve emailed you multiple times in the last couple of months but never got any answer. I was getting worried.

Our preferred method to handle support issues is now through support@modrobotics.com, and not the forums. We’ll take a look at those motors over there.


Must be the internet. Checked with My ISP and my email history & no emails from cleoqc. No biggie. When I got the School foundation to purchase the GoPiGo3s one stipulation was that I get a person that would be my contact for technical matters. They chose Nicole Parrot, an excellent choice, but last fall she mentioned that she would not be doing that any more and that I should go through your standard support. I did ask her and John if you all would be supporting the GoPiG03s in 2020. Got no answer. Looking at your website — I now know the answer is, no. None of the Dexter products are mentioned and their top 2 execs are gone.

Turns out that the school was planning on buying a couple of hundred GoPiGo3s for the other classes, if things worked out with the 25. But with the company upheaval and the lack of interest from your firm, that will not happen.

When I have time, I’ll follow your guidelines and check with support. But for now we’re OK.

Take care,


Pssst, here’s a secret. I’m Nicole. Just that I’ve been CleoQc here from before I started working with Dexter.
Thanks for the good recommendation, too. I’m around, not about to leave. It’s just that we now do support through Zendesk, but it will still be me.

And Yes Mod Robotics is supporting the Dexter products. The websites have not been merged, so everything is still at http://dexterindustries.com

I did email you a few times, including Jan 1st to wish you a happy new year.

Please, please, please, verify that none of the devices have IPv6 enabled. This will, will, absolutely WILL cause all kinds of networking issues. Don’t ask me why, but this has been a known issue for a while. I even have a blog post about it from way back.


This talks about the connection to the outside internet vanishing, but since then, I’ve seen this affect internal connections too.

Also ask @cleoqc about how to check/verify that IPv6 isn’t enabled on the 'bots either.

I can’t speak for the rest of Modular Robotics, but I CAN say that the “Dexter Industries” support is stellar.

Unfortunately, corporate takeovers wreck havoc on communication sometimes and there have been a few bumps. (Especially since this happened right around the Holidays too.)

I would strongly recommend and encourage your school to reconsider its decision not to continue with the purchase of the GoPiGo 'bots.

Thx. Great idea about iPv6. Next year the school will dump the ChromeBooks for iPads. So all (about 500+ kids in 5th thru 8th ) will have ipads. The head tech guy (who prefers Pumpkin to Raspberry Pi, BTW) did a parents’ survey & found that they liked iPads better. I asked him if he ever programmed on an iPad. He said that he’s management and doesn’t do that. (I took that as a “No”.) He said what about swift playgrounds? Ok for swift, but all of the future that the kids will see is either Python or Java (yes, JavaScript, too). Hard to ignore the Python bandwagon – and as my daddy advised, “Ride the horse in the direction it’s going”.

Ever try & program something on an iPad? Like using the claw of a hammer to tighten a screw. Wow! Painful.

BTW cleoqc ALWAYS gives great advice. I looked in our dictionary for the word “smart” and there was her picture. How did they know?

As to the future. (I’ve spent some 50 yrs in the M&A biz) hard to see how the Dexter products will survive. The Cubelets Toy Company has a winner, for sure. Kids love to play around with those cubes. Sort of like the Spheros. Amazing devices, but very little programming going on. STEM classes try but kids mostly just hook things together or just drive the bots around. Kids LOVE to build things. (Check out any of the middle school computer after school clubs. 95% will be using Minecraft – just building things.)

Enough ranting. Again, thx for all of the advice & help. Been wrong before (no shortage of folks that will point that out) . Hope I’m wrong about he Dexter Products. Big question is what happens when the VC $ run out.


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+10,000,000 thumbs up!

(Plbbbbbbt! There’s your “twenty characters required to post”!)

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Awww, now I’m blushing :blush:

Cubelets are fun, and really make kids think about input and output, triggers, and such. Its a pre-programming tool. And the next step is GoPiGo. It’s here to stay.



Awww, my giggle-bots are getting depressed!

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argh! How can I forget my little gigglebots!!!
To be honest, it’s an either/or case. Gigglebots are fun, easy to get started with, and easy to maintain in a classroom environment. They are quite capable but not as capable as a GoPiGo. So it really depends on what the teachers/end users want to achieve.

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I see the gigglebot as a younger GoPiGo - something you can take to a group who have outgrown the cublets, but are (perhaps) a bit young for a full-blown Go-Pi-Go.

Suggestion for the gigglebot:
A pen servo that can be attached in such a way that the user can command “pen up” and “pen down”.

Implementing this for my gigglebots, and adding the commands to make-code, (thanks for your article!), is on my short-list of things to do.

“Da bitch part” is figuring out how to take the rotary motion of a servo and translate it to a direct linear (up and down) pen motion without a lot of parts and without a 3-D printer.

Sigh. . . .

I just love when the management types who are responsible for the care and feeding of 500+ students, technology wise, has less clue than the amoeba he just stepped on.

“I’m the head tech guy!”
“Ever do any programming?”
“Oh no, I’m management - I don’t do that!”
(banging head on floor)