3588 Off-Season Blog - Open Alliance

Hello and welcome to Team 3588’s first-ever build thread! We are excited to be a part of the #openalliance for this upcoming season and can’t wait to share what we will be doing!

For some context, we are a team based in Lindbergh High School in Renton, Washington, and have roughly 30 active members, three advisors, and one mentor. We originally joined FRC in 2011, and in our long history, we have qualified for worlds twice and won Chairmans in 2014. After the 2019-2020 season got cut in half, we struggled due to the lack of experience on our team. Combine that with us being unable to meet because of the pandemic, and we lost knowledge. By joining the open alliance, we hope to get some help with all aspects of our team. We also love sharing what our team processes are and learning what other groups do as well! Now to the fun stuff and what we plan to do during this off-season!

Off-Season Plans

Workshops/Training

After holding our orientation/interest meeting on the 19th, we plan on transitioning into workshops. We will hold workshops this year by having all the members split off into their respective subteams. The subteam leads will then lead that workshop to teach the rookies the basics of their discipline. All subteams will meet on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 2-4 for two weeks for six sessions of workshops for each subteam. Last year, our workshop season was six weeks long; Each subteam got one meeting every week. The project management team decided to change the structure this year because we realized that people don’t retain what they learned unless they meet regularly.

Mini-Build

Our mini-build season is a period in which we build a robot based on a challenge we create, similar to the build season. Last year, we had two sumo bots that competed against each other in a sumo challenge. The sumo challenge was fun, but the challenge didn’t prepare us for the build season. That is why, this year, we are planning on building one robot. We will use the robot for demonstrations at outreach events, and learn mechanisms we’ve struggled with. The primary mechanism will be a flywheel shooter, and our main “game piece” will be the infinite recharge power cells. We also hope to incorporate an intake, similar to Team 2910s 2021 robot and utilize vision on the robot because last year, we saw how crucial a vision system is when we went to competitions, especially for shooters. Our mini-build season will start in the second week of October! We will make weekly updates letting you know what point in the build process we are in!

Our Links

Instagram

Facebook

Youtube

Website

We will be adding our Onshape and GitHub from last year in a later post because they are currently not ready to be shared. We also want to be sure that they are fully up-to-date before we share them.

8 Likes

As part of the preparation for the season, our team goes through two phases. The mini-build and workshops. We finished workshops and are now in our mini-build season. This post will be detailing what we have been up to.

Outreach

We attended Kingcon NW; A convention that showcases cosplays, games, and STEM.

We were invited to Kingcon NW again, and it was a whole bunch of fun. We had a robotics section with FTC team 8693, the Hazen Scarabs where we showcased our competition robot, S.A.A.L, and they showed off their outreach bot. More photos can be found on our Instagram!

1 Like

Week 1 of Mini-Build

During week 1 of mini-build, we held a mock kickoff event! Members analyzed and conceptualized a robot for the 2018 game to give the team a feel for what an FRC game looks like, familiarizing the team with common terms found in FRC. On the final day of week 1, we introduced the team to the challenge of mini-build, “Lil’ Buddies Badlands”, a re-skinned competition based on infinite recharge featuring one of our mascots for this year, Little Buddy.

Here’s the presentation that we showed the team, outlining the purpose of the game: Lil' Buddy's Badlands Breifing - Google Slides

We split up the team into 3 groups with two subteam leads each and tasked them with conceptualizing an entire robot, taking the rest of the week.

2 Likes

Week 2 of Mini-Build

During week 2 of mini-build, we presented our designs to the entire team and weighed the pros and cons of each design to choose what mechanisms we liked from each robot. On Friday, ultimately, we finalized our design and were ready to begin prototyping. Tired from the brain power we put into thinking about designs, the team played ultimate frisbee to relax before the grueling process of prototyping the following week.

1 Like

Week 3 of Mini-Build

During week 3 of mini-build, members separated into their respective subteams. CAD focused on getting the master sketch done and getting the idea realized. Fabrication worked on prototyping our intake and storage systems with electrical’s assistance. They were also able to assemble our KOP chassis. Programming worked on figuring out P.I.D and reviewing the basics of Java and command-based programming with new members of the team. Outreach filmed the first episode of our mini-build series and rookie interviews. You can check it out on our Instagram! They also got in contact with Costco as a possible sponsor!


1 Like

Week 4 of Mini-Build

Week 4 started with a surprise package from Rev: Electrical members received a care package of batteries. Surprisingly, they were a variant of the ones we initially ordered… We plan on contacting Rev to see if there are any significant differences between the variant (MK ES17-12-X) and the original (MK ES17-12). If you are familiar with these two batteries and their differences, please reply to the thread!


Fabrication assembled acquisition and the robot’s storage system successfully thanks to the work of the Fab members from week 3. Fab members, additionally, cleaned their pit and made updates to their shopping lists. Electrical and CAD members were busy this week helping each other out with the master sketch, leading to a finalized master sketch. CAD members are now working on making the superstructures (robot frames) for our Mini-Build bot. Outreach got a lot done this week, filming B-roll footage, interviewing rookies about their experience so far in Mini-build, taking inventory, and drafting content for an Instagram post introducing the leadership team. Although programmers were locked out of their laptops this week, they got the working code for the P.I.D motor controllers ready for testing. Week 4 was rather eventful, and our team is looking forward to all the craziness of week 5. Expect some fun content on our Instagram page!

1 Like

Week 5 of Mini-Build

Our team’s week started with a fantastic surprise with a $9874 grant matched by the Renton Schools Foundation! We plan on using this grant and another $10,000 grant through OSPI toward new programming laptops, electrical components, fab materials, and outreach equipment! In terms of Outreach, a lot happened for our team this week in addition to the matched grant. We met with Blue Origin to discuss a potential sponsorship opportunity with new mentors, we hosted a parent night on Friday introducing parents to the wonderful world of what goes on in the shops, and we’re continuing editing and finalizing our mini-build video and an Instagram post introducing the leadership team. CAD is currently working on fleshing out integration, acquisition, pneumatics, and necessary calculations for the acquisition of game pieces. While CAD is working on integration, Fabrication is preparing to fabricate the acquisition and indexer mechanisms out of sheet metal. Electrical, what’s more, now has completed their first electrical board with chassis motors and is waiting on CAD to put on pneumatics. Although programming is still signed out of laptops, they’ve made significant progress on testing and drafting chassis code and stress-testing motors with Electrical.

2 Likes

Week 6 of Mini-Build

Even though week 6 was rather short because of thanksgiving break, our team kept pushing on. Outreach finalized the team’s branding document and applied it to our social media posts. Additionally, Outreach filled out a contact form for contacting Mercedes Benz as a potential sponsor and finalized the week 6 footage for our final mini-build video. After meeting with Blue Origin, we received news that mentors will begin coming to our shops to help out students! CADers spent Monday and Wednesday working extensively on fixing problems with compression, pistons, and the master sketch. Although CAD is still working on fixing these issues, CADers found out how to fix the problems with the piston and fully expect to finish by the start of week 7. Programming got a ton done this week. On Monday, they finished code for our shooter and our PID code, tested and played around with speed controllers, and started code for acquisition. Programming fully expects to finalize their acquisition code on Monday.


With programming, Electrical spent the majority of the week assisting programming with troubleshooting the electrical board, ensuring everything goes well. Due to the short-time-frame, Fabrication mainly continued preparing to fabricate the acquisition and indexer mechanisms out of sheet metal. Nevertheless, once CAD is done finishing up issues with the master sketch, by Wednesday, Fabrication will be able to begin assembling and fabricating the acquisition and indexer mechanisms out of sheet metal. Expect some awesome developments next week!

Week 7 of Mini-Build

It’s the second to last week of our Mini-Build season, and deadlines are approaching fast. Nevertheless, with polish, the team has been working hard. Programming finished their acquisition code, but unfortunately, they have recently been experiencing some problems with all of their mechanism code. To help, Electrical has been working with programming to troubleshoot mechanical issues while other Electrical members are wiring the electrical board and planning out acquisition sparkmax placement. In other great news, CAD finished our robot’s CAD and has moved on to finalizing and fixing CAD drawings for Fabrication. Fabrication has finished making parts for acquisition, bumpers, and some parts for storage and shooter. In addition, Outreach has finalized a video summarizing our mini-build season that will be released soon! Outreach has also been working on learning more about adobe products and looking into new video techniques that we can use in the future. If anyone has any suggestions based on our past videos on new video techniques to try, we’d appreciate it!

Our team also got the unique opportunity to tour Blue Origin Saturday morning! Filled with donuts and OJ, we learned about Blue’s New Shepard rocket and Club for the Future, Blue’s program for inspiring future generations to pursue careers in STEM and to help invent the future of life in space. Our students learned more about the Aerospace industry, and the experience was unforgettable!

We look forward to working more with our mentors from Blue Origin and are ready for the final week of the mini-build season.

3 Likes

We are seeing some not great internal resistance numbers on our newest batch.

Did you ever hear anything about the differences here?

Yes, we were told that the X signifies that the batteries came from a different manufacturer but are the same battery. According to the email we were sent, they both should have the same specs.

Hello again and welcome back to Team 3588’s offseason thread! We are returning this year to be a part of openalliance for this upcoming season and are excited to continue sharing what we do!

Off-Season Plans

Workshops/Training
After holding our orientation meeting on September 15th, this transitions us into our workshops. This is when we have all of our members, new and returning, split off into their interested/returning respective subteams. All subteams meet on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 2-4 for three weeks with 7 sessions of workshops for each subteam total. This is very similar to last year’s workshop season except for the extra session of workshops. This was decided because the project management team thought that there should be an extra day of leeway.

Mini-Build
Again, similarly to last year’s mini-build, we complied a challenge created from different aspects of already existing FRC games to simulate build season! Last year our struggles consisted of prioritizing the acquisition and prototyping portions and hope that we will be able to finish our mini-build robot by the end of the mini-build. Our challenge this year consists of the charging station from last year, 2019’s podium climb, and a shooter style similar to Stronghold and Rapid React’s goals except with whiffle balls.

Our Links
Instagram

Youtube

Website
We are reworking our website since it is out of date and will add Onshape and GitHub at a later date.