Thursday, February 27, 2020

2020 Day 54: Competition Robot Ready for Dripping Springs

It's been about a week since our last update. The competition robot has been coming together since then. Here are a few photos and the robot description flyer for Ultraviolet

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We have been to our friends FRC#5414 Pearadox's build site to practice twice this week. Once with out practice bot and tonight with our competition robot. Below is the first match simulation that we did. We are still tuning some things but we are very excited about the shooter and climber.

We didn't post our last design review so here those are below.

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Friday, February 21, 2020

2020: Day 45 (plus a few of the previous days)

Comp Robot is beginning to come together. 



Now with more polycarbonate

Shooter Hood

Printed and laser cut hood.

Camera Mounts are progressing


Buddy Climb Mechanism

The deployment mechanism is progressing.

More photos and videos can be found in our gallery.


2020 Day 48: CAD updated

The CAD model has been updated on GrabCAD -

Some of the electrical and pneumatics details are getting done

Climber Gearbox test fit is done, should be climbing by Saturday (with acetal plates, not wood)


Tuesday, February 18, 2020

2020 Day 46: Design Review #7

No Bag Day

It's a very good day, it's the first of hopefully many no bag days in future seasons.

For anyone new to FRC and wants to know a few of the reasons why so many in the community supported removing the bag for many years here are a couple good places to read more.

Everyone at FRC HQ and in the community that worked to make the removal of the bag a reality deserves a thank you. Giving teams the ability to choose how to use their resources (time, money, etc) is a great thing and will increase opportunities for inspiration through iteration and more time with their robots.

Design Review #7

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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

2020 Day 37, 38, 39 - Design Review 6

Design Review # 6

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Falcon 500 Tight Pinions

Here is a video showing how we use the wire brush to make the tight press pinions slip on to the Falcon 500 shaft. We also have figured out that some of the pinions go on the shafts easier in one direction than the other, so if it's not fitting nicely after a minutes or two with the wire brush flip it around and see. The wire brush has made it so we don't have to press any of the pinions on they all just slip on after enough time with the brush on the shafts.


Sunday, February 9, 2020

2020 Day 35 & 36


We are getting some 2.5" OD polycarbonate tube to test soon. But for now.
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The shooter is still under development. We are trying to improve our spin-up time.

The CAD currently looks like this. (only 2-4 of them will be staying there)

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Here is a small slow-motion video. We are working on improving belt distances on the protobot.


Thursday, February 6, 2020

2020 Day 34

Really quick update today. We are moving along on revisions to CAD for the protobot so we can them fixed in time for competition robot production starting in earnest this weekend.

We are moving to use a 3D printed pulley on our falcon shooters using a 10t falcon pinon gear as a mating spline. A few other teams have shown off this method and it should work nicely for our situation.

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Posted the file for this model here -


2020 Day 33: Losing Weight

We have been finding places we can remove weight from our robot. We need the weight to fit our climber on and possibly add more motors to our shooter.

  • Weight savings
    • Change Flex Wheels to pool noodles - ~1lb
    • Remove roller (3 to 2) - ~1lb
    • Remove VPs in Funnel and remove one NEO 550, move to belt and crossed poly cord belt
    • Look into nylon bushing instead of bearings on some of the rollers/belts.
    • Remove VP from the tower and switch to Falcon with 8t pinion (can't get 8t on NEO, don't want to press on 9t, need too much reduction for NEO550)
    • Fairlanes in accelerator wheels move to stealth wheels
    • Remove VP from buddy climb and use 6t NEO 550 pinion
    • 1/16" wall square/rectangle tube change to 0.04" and 0.05" vex Versaframe.

Here is a video of a very quick drill powered pool noodle intake test.


Tuesday, February 4, 2020

2020 Day 32: Design Review 5 and Updated CAD

CAD Updated on GrabCAD

Design Review #5

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2020 Day 30 & 31: Super Bowl Watching and Robot Building

Chairman's Award and Woodie Flowers Award Submissions Due this Week.

The Chairman's Award essay and questions and the Woodie Flower's Award essay are due Thursday, so we are hard at work on finalizing our submission.

Please take the time to write an essay nominating one of your mentors. Not just for the hope of winning the award but because choosing a mentor each season and writing an essay about all the ways they help you is a great way to show your appreciation. Give them a signed copy, or read it to them at your end of year party; anything to show you appreciate how much time and work they put into helping you be a better person.

Super Bowl Watch Party

We had our annual Spectrum Super Bowl watching party event thing.
Students playing Tetris and watching the Super Bowl. Allen sorting bolts :)
(Allen: Mostly during commercials, I was also watching the game)

Ball Tracking Progress

Made a bit more progress on ball tracking for auton.

Robot Testing

We finished wiring and getting basic code on our ProtoBot. We quickly added two cylinders to the top of the tower after a few promising tests of stopping the balls at the top.

Here is our first test of the full intake, funnel, and tower together. We are very excited that we can load 3 balls into the tower nicely. The PVC pipes and slightly under tensioned timing belt allow the belts to slip across the middle ball and not jam it forcefully into the top one.

We were able to quickly get some PIDF values set up on our Falcon Shooter with the help of our OpenAlliance friends BOB319 and were able to test the full ball path from ground to goal. 

There are still a lot of changes to be made to the design before we produce the competition robot. We are also looking at cutting weight before we add the climber, buddy climb, and color wheel. The robot in that video weighs 96lbs, we aren't going to have much room to spare.

More photos and videos are in the gallery as always. 


Sunday, February 2, 2020

2020 Day 29

We have most of the protobot mechanically done. We found several issues with the design and things we will be changing on the protobot and improvements we can make to our competition robots. The electronics will be mounted tomorrow. We did get a few shots off but only in open loop on a single falcon, so it really doesn't show us much.