We are currently stuck at a crossroads regarding robot design - if we should continue with our complex yet precise design or go with a simple but effective one.
This is a schedule for the season leading up to our Week 2 Competition - Channelview.
As we know drive practice is very important for this year’s competition: from coordination of picking up game pieces; to placing them without having a good view; and balancing on the charging station. Hopefully, we follow this schedule so that we have a couple of weeks for drive practice and fixing any bugs we come across.
As for the parts of the current design, we are prioritizing making sure that the design won’t damage any electrical components as it functions. As well, we are planning on prioritizing the vacuum concept of suctioning the game pieces as it is the most efficient method of grabbing the cones and cubes. Although, if we cannot realistically design the suction cups to work we will be using a gripper (we will start prototyping soon).
Here are some pictures of our progress so far…
We are hopeful that this design for the claw will be able to pick up the cones from any orientation as well as grip onto the cubes without damaging them.
This claw will have an infinity belt connected to pulleys in order to get both wheels spilling in opposite directions. Then, we would plug a motor (using the empty bearing slot) and connect it to a gear, and those two would both be connected to the two pivot points of the arms. The arms would pivot with a 3D-printed set of gear teeth that surrounds the polycarb.
We will start prototyping it at tomorrow’s meeting!
Elevator: “simple yet effective”
Our “simple but effective” design for our elevator will have three stage elevator (two stages are shown in the picture) powered by one motor, and then have another motor power it to slant to the three degrees necessary (three limit switches to help program it) - one to grab from HP, one to score, one to pick up game pieces from the floor.
Elevator: “complex yet precise”
Our “complex yet precise” design for our elevator, carriage, and arm mechanism appeared to have many failure points that were caused by intricate and not easily replaceable pieces (if something were to get damaged in competition). We currently have this design on the back-burner, but we may go back to it in the coming days.
We have spent many consecutive hours researching vacuums and the perfect way to suction onto the game pieces - debating how much surface area is needed to get an airtight seal as well as have the strength to hold on while moving at high speeds. We will start prototyping this design once we receive the vacuum pumps and all the parts necessary.
This will be using a rack n pinion to move the battery along the base of our belly pan, we are going to test if moving the battery can help us balance on the charging station. This picture is not the final design, but we are ready to prototype it.
Additional CAD Concept Video:
We have also been playing around with this gravity-moving, infinity ring which may come in handy with our future designs. This can act as a lazy susan or even an alignment corrector (due to gravity).
Just as last year, we have our progression posted on our google drive of cad Let us know if you have any questions. Good luck, and thank you for reading!