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Unread 11-07-2017, 01:44 PM
philso philso is offline
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

The Throatless Shear from Harbor Freight has been very useful for cutting think aluminum and polycarbonate sheet up to about 1/8" thick. It is especially good for cuts longer than the blades on a pair of tin snips. I loaned mine to our neighbors at Team 624 and after a few weeks they bought their own. Wait until there is a 20% or 25% coupon.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 02:50 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by bobbysq View Post
This big crimper - Crimps battery cables like it's nobody's business. It doesn't ratchet, but it has enough leverage that it barely matters. The only issue is that it's not exact, since the measurements are in mm^2 and not AWG, but it does the job. (and it sure is better than the hammer crimper my team used to use)

XT60 connectors - I'm going to start a connector war in this thread by saying this, but these are probably the best high amperage connector for our robots since they're cheap, only require soldering, and are widely available online.

Neither of these appear to be on McMaster, but they're pretty useful.
XT30 XT60 and XT90s are the best connectors known to man if you have skills in soldering. Definite favorite for any of the wiring guys.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 02:56 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Cyberphil View Post
Agreed. There are some amazing things in the original post that I will definitely be taking back to my own team.

But in all seriousness, who would buy creamer from McMaster?
Someone who wants to REALLY only put in 1 order and slip something by on a purchasing request form. Nobody's going to question a $3.87 item on an order from McMaster that costs $1000. It's convenience I guess.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 03:48 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Cyberphil View Post
But in all seriousness, who would buy creamer from McMaster?
Maybe some kind of metal shop that also has a coffee maker, so they order all of it at once?

But actually, clip nuts are incredibly useful for bolting sheets of material onto other sheets of material without having to find a way to shove a wrench behind the part you're bolting or unbolting.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 04:39 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Cyberphil View Post
But in all seriousness, who would buy creamer from McMaster?
Also I didnít think of this at first, but coffee creamer needs to be refrigerated. How is McMaster shipping it without letting it spoil? How are they storing it in their warehouses?

Maybe they ship it inside 6333T55
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Unread 11-07-2017, 04:43 PM
mman1506 mman1506 is offline
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by AriMB View Post
Also I didn’t think of this at first, but coffee creamer needs to be refrigerated. How is McMaster shipping it without letting it spoil? How are they storing it in their warehouses?

Maybe they ship it inside 6333T55
Have you seen how fast McMaster shipping is ?!? Your creamer will still be cold by the time it arrives!
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Unread 11-07-2017, 04:51 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by AllenGregoryIV View Post
Nylon Clevis / Rod Ends for pneumatics and gas spring-
https://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/123/1259/=1a49xko
We've been using these ball joint tie rod ends for cylinders for the past few years. It's usually easier to attach the cylinder end with a bolt than a clevis, and the ball joint gets rid of alignment issues.

Good thread idea, hopefully it doesn't get oversaturated with joke posts so we can still come back and find "that part that someone posted online" later.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 04:55 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by philso View Post
The Throatless Shear from Harbor Freight has been very useful for cutting think aluminum and polycarbonate sheet up to about 1/8" thick. It is especially good for cuts longer than the blades on a pair of tin snips. I loaned mine to our neighbors at Team 624 and after a few weeks they bought their own. Wait until there is a 20% or 25% coupon.
To clarify, can this tool cut through 1/8" Aluminum as well as polycarbonate? If so, how well?

This just might be the tool of my dreams!
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Unread 11-07-2017, 06:18 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Classified* View Post
To clarify, can this tool cut through 1/8" Aluminum as well as polycarbonate? If so, how well?

This just might be the tool of my dreams!
Generally a sheet metal tool is good for 2 gauges thicker aluminum than it's steel rating. That would cap it at .078", well short of 1/8.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 06:21 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Cory View Post
Generally a sheet metal tool is good for 2 gauges thicker aluminum than it's steel rating. That would cap it at .078", well short of 1/8.
I knew it was too good to be true.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 06:21 PM
philso philso is offline
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Classified* View Post
To clarify, can this tool cut through 1/8" Aluminum as well as polycarbonate? If so, how well?

This just might be the tool of my dreams!
I am pretty sure I have cut 1/16" aluminum with it. It is rated for 16 gauge steel which is also about 1/16" so it will probably cut 1/8" aluminum. I can see if I have any around at home this evening and give it a try. The design does not let the two jaws twist apart and jam the work piece between them like I have had happen on normal sheet metal shears.

There are higher quality ones out there for something like 3-5 X the price of this one.

Last edited by philso : 11-07-2017 at 06:25 PM.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 10:34 PM
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Jeremy Germita Jeremy Germita is online now
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

A couple more:

Disc brake rotors - This 140mm rotor has a bolt pattern that's a few thou off from the traditional 1.875" pattern in the FRC COTS ecosystem, but the holes are also a few thou larger, so they'll fit just fine. Couple with the calipers also listed on that site.

If you're not spending your Digikey voucher on dope right angle brackets, you can buy the cables and connectors to roll your own Talon SRX/Gadgeteer data cables.

WCP's 0.030" smoked polycarbonate(or any other 1/32" thick polycarb) is great for lower load polycarb panels. Super lightweight and you can cut it with scissors. We found that most of what we've traditionally done with 1/8 or 1/16" can be done with this - sponsor panels, hopper walls, etc

Less of a specific product, but more of a tip: Teams might have piles and piles of churro lengths from a past AM14U. Tap the bore in these to interface with cylinders for fast, easy, and cheap rod-ends for pneumatic cylinders! Also compatible with thunderhex or any other shaft if you have a lathe. Could probably knock one of these out in a few minutes if you need one in a pinch.


Chart for cylinder sizes vs taps vs churro or thunderhex compatibility:
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Last edited by Jeremy Germita : 11-07-2017 at 10:58 PM.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 11:00 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

My only addition to this incredible list is credited to 1731.

Vet wrap comes in many widths, patterns and colors. It is perfect for adding a bit of traction to any surface (such as plywood CNC'ed wheels) during prototyping. It sticks to itself, but also nicely adheres to any tape or glue. Sometimes it even finds its way onto the final robot.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 11:48 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

We use a lot of the captive nuts for sheet metal useful for areas where you can't get a wrench, Generally make things easier to take apart and packages better than a traditional nut. Really easy to install if you have an arbor press.

Star nuts that were mentioned earlier are great as well.
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Unread 11-07-2017, 11:51 PM
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Re: Favorite robot parts teams should know about

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Originally Posted by Classified* View Post
To clarify, can this tool cut through 1/8" Aluminum as well as polycarbonate? If so, how well?

This just might be the tool of my dreams!
I finally found a piece of an old robot with a piece of aluminum angle that was 1/8" thick (verified with digital caliper). I had to clamp the base of the throatless shear to my welding table in order to be able to apply enough force on the handle to cut the 1/8" aluminum. In the 3rd picture, you can see how one side stays fairly flat and the scrap side is curved out of the way allowing cuts much longer than the blades. This was fairly maleable aluminum. I could not find any of the other pieces of harder aluminum sheet in my garage. I had to very quickly rearrange stuff to fit a car in before the arrival of Hurricane Harvey. I was able to trim the corners off a piece of 0.070" thick steel (unknown allow) without trying very hard.

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