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  #31   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 01-23-2007, 08:09 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

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Originally Posted by rohit View Post
My friend does robotics at another school (dont want to name) & when I asked him what he does, he said that he just sits at the meetings and comes home. I think that thats just not right
His choice or not? If it's his choice, then he's the one that can change it. Or maybe there isn't enough work to go around yet. Could be he just doesn't want to participate. Now if he's being essentially forced to the side, that's another story.
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Unread 01-23-2007, 08:47 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

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Originally Posted by maltz1881 View Post
(he is the 1 last year who cut off the 2 fingers!! )
Hopefully there wasn't a second?
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Unread 01-23-2007, 10:29 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

First off I would like to say that many of these mentor/ student built threads are based only on a person's mood at the time. Im sure that at some point people wanted to be 100% student or 100% mentor. I know that I have swayed back and forth on that.

However, the very important fact that everyone seems to forget is that FIRST is about learning. Personally I understand that there is a HUGE amount of information that one person can find and comprehend by themselves. But...the point of the matter is that even though they learn all these new things, there is still so much more that they can never even think of knowing.

Over the past three years our team has developed greatly and has gone from being built by enthusiastic students...to enthusiastic young adults. We began solely on the basis of building a robot, but we now understand that just building a robot is not enough. Personally I have learned an immense amount through my own experiences and research. On the other hand, the knowledge I have gained on my own cannot even come close to the amount of insight I have gained through talking with mentors, engineers and company owners.

This year I have taken a completely different look at how a robot should be designed and built. For the first time, we are making detailed CAD drawings and testing ideas both with prototypes and 3D CAD models. We also have taken the time to use physics and math to optimize weight vs. strength. In my opinion the most important aspect of this "design concept" is talking with engineers, not simply getting their ideas or having them look at yours. We have been able to use the engineers ideas to elevate our own and change things for the better.

It is my opinion that students MUST be involved in the design and build process, but it is EQUALLY important to involve mentors and engineers.

Jonathan Morgan
Team 1626
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Unread 01-23-2007, 10:50 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

Team 1726 is a second year team. Our rookie year, there were no mechanical engineers involved, the students did all the design and most of the building (with adult help for those things that required use of machines they could not use). The team was successfull, the robot worked, students and mentors (and parents) learned a lot, and people in our city became enthusiastic about robotics.

This year I've been poking my nose into the design process, teaching the students about how a mechanical engineer (me) thinks about design. I don't want to make any decisions about the design or fabrication (aside from safety issues), but I am surely going to offer a lot of ideas (which are mostly the result of having experience), and I am doing what I can to teach the students how to figure out if a design is going to work or not....while it's still in the concept or design phase. I've had to get out the books and learn and relearn a lot, and I've been really pleased to see some of the students eagerly soaking up quick lessons on how to calcluate moments of inertia, maximum stress due to bending, moments, CG, weight of materials given the dimensions, torque multiplication, what motor ratings mean, etc. None of these things were actually engineered in last years robot.

I've seen first hand that a 100% student designed and built robot can be competitive, and I have also seen first hand that high school students simply are not engineers....yet! This is a great opportunity to show them how to be an engineer (the short lesson). We are fortunate to have a few parent engineers, as well as two non-parent engineering mentors, a very enthusiastic teacher, and a great facility to work in.
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Unread 01-23-2007, 11:55 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

I usually do not post on these kinds of threads, but like someone before me has said these responses are mostly based on what mood you are in at the time. I just had a few questions for some of you.

Those of you that are part of a proud 100% student built robot:

1.) I was wondering what kind of relationship you have with your sponsors?

2.) When you graduate, and/if you decide to come back are you going to take no part in the build, even if it would help a student learn or better understand what he/she is doing. If you ask me I think to not teach a new student something that cannot be taught verbally is holding that student back which is doing more harm than good.

3.) Do you look down on teams that have a mentor or an engineer help them with their robot?

4.) What is your reason for not letting an adult help in the building of your robot.

I am not from a team that is 100% student built and let me tell you something I am proud of that. One thing I can tell you is that I learned more in my 4 years of FIRST by working side by side with engineers and mentors than I ever could have taught myself. By doing this they will help you learn how to work on a team that has its member at different levels of education. When you enter into the workforce dont you think it will feel good to know that you have helped bring the new generation students together with the current workforce? Now I am in no way supportive of a team that has a majority engineer/mentor built robot. But I will stand behind any team that has engineers teaching students the design/production processes, for these teams in my opinion have accomplished the purpose of FIRST.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 12:51 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

Gee RedBarron, after your above post it appears that you can almost hear the crickets chirping. This has been a good discussion with some good open ideas. If it does continue I hope that it remains that way. A responsible exchange of ideas is always a good thing.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 01:13 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

When my team started out in 03' we were 100% student/parent built. But over the last 4 years we have been able to obtain more and more engineering help. Right now we have a solid group of 3-4 engineers and 3-4 college mentors who are really helping our team. Throughout this transition, I have been able to see the drastic impact that engineering mentors can have on a team. The level of efficiency and ability to get things ordered and accomplished has increased immensely with the addition of engineering mentor help. Plus, seeing someone who is actually in the engineering field getting really excited about the robotics program is really inspiring.

I guess, in conclusion....Yes, it is admirable to be 100% student built, but you are missing out on a large percent of what FIRST is about.

court
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Unread 01-31-2007, 03:03 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

Good Discussion guys. (Even though it has been hashed out let the newer members hash it for awhile.)

I am glad for however you get your robot on the field and develop some skills along the way.

With our group we are about 75% student designed and about 80% built by students. We do this for one because we can and we have a collection of great mentors. I know that some teams don't have mentors at their disposal so they make do with what they have. Our students value the education and experience the mentors have that they have yet to achieve. At that point they step back and observe how things are done by professionals. To have respect for the process you are in right now, respect the knowledge around you by using it to your full advantage. By having the engineers involved you bring in industry standards, project management, and fresh ideas.

Anyway, good luck however you go about this. See you all in a couple of weeks
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Unread 01-31-2007, 07:55 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

I belive that adults should have some influence on the robots because they are older and wiser then some of our more.... interesting students. And I'm not just saying that to be a suck up. But we are about 70%.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 08:41 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

This year's bot I am very proud to say was 100% built by students. Not one single part was sent out of our own student team member's hands. I am also proud to say that this year's design not only beats every other year's designs in both strategy, functionality, and "simple complexity", as I call it, but it was also pretty much built with basic hand tools, with the exception of a drill press.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 08:51 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

Our team is 100% student, which I believe in. The main argument for mentor/engineer built is that the students will not learn any other way, but there are ways for kids to learn other than having someone else do the work for them. (Asking questions on this forum, for example)
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Unread 01-31-2007, 08:56 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

Team 195 is completely student designed and mostly student built. The only thing that isn't being done by students is welding.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 10:04 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

I'd say our robot is more than 95% built by students, with the mentors making parts in order to show other students how to make parts, and the students then take over. Also, during the week we had finals, (and couldn't work) our mentor made a couple parts for us, but they were things like bushings, not like our lift mechanism. The main components of the robot are completely student made, with mentors advising.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 10:20 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

114 is 100% student built, with the exception of the CNCing. All parts which are CNCed are 100% student designed though.
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Unread 01-31-2007, 10:35 PM
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Re: How many teams are 100% student built

Team 204 is 100% student run. We have our advisors who make sure nobody kills themselves but other than that, we find travel arrangements, hotels, food, metal, machining, driving to get parts, ect. We are very proud to be a very competative team with zero help from any professional engineers or machinists. We all feel that by building the robot ourselves, it will only benefit us in the long run. Instead of "watching" how to build a roboti, we jump right in and do everything ourselves.
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