Im 100% sure were not the only team that had a debate over this design. Quite frankly at first i thought this idea was pretty dumb… jeez its hard enough for a person to get that ball in, how the heck is a robot gonna do it, espically on that crazy surface with the crazy wheels. But Ive been thinking a little more now, if you position your “ball cannon” higher than the low edge of the trailer and make some kinda of rotating turret stand for it then mabye it could be effecent from distances of 5-15 feet if you chased robots from behind. It would be a programming nigtmare though. I guess we would have to mount the camera so that it can track the colors on the trailer and look at the angle and from there determine the distance. but heck it was our programmer that made up the idea… i mean that doesnt solve the problem of the skidding surface or the lag made form the air time fo the ball…
I was actually going to start a thread about this so that more experienced teams could make some suggestions about it.
That’s the design I want to use,but I’m not really sure how to actually build one.
(Anyone want to take a shot at it and describe how to build one? )
Relying on dumping and throwing will be less efficient though. In order to dump the balls on another robot, both robots have to come to an almost-complete stop, and considering how slippery the surface is, both robots are going to end up skidding in a small area and will make them easy targets for the throwers.
You cannot rely on your throwers because teams are going to have solid robots that are going to find an efficient way to overcome the slippery surface and will be a fast moving target. And as we all know, nobody counts with a perfect aim.
So does anyone know how to build a ball cannon?
( I might start a new thread on this)
For those of you who are relatively new to FIRST, in 2006 there was a game “Aim High” where we were asked to launch 7" poof balls into a vertical target eight feet off the floor. Many teams used a modified softball pitching machine design for their robots, with moderate to high success. Although the geometries of the poof balls and the orbit balls are quite different, this could be a possible strategy to revisit.
Originally Posted by **Taylor **
*For those of you who are relatively new to FIRST, in 2006 there was a game “Aim High” where we were asked to launch 7" poof balls into a vertical target eight feet off the floor. Many teams used a modified softball pitching machine design for their robots, with moderate to high success. Although the geometries of the poof balls and the orbit balls are quite different, this could be a possible strategy to revisit. *
this was actually what we were thinking about using like the tennis/baseball/softball launcher type design. im still a littel skeptical beuacse we can argue that its going to be hard to use a dumping design accurate, but that doesnt change that fact that a launching design would be any more accurate…all of this is super dependent on how much sliding we get on the new surface because really no one knows how different its gonna be from carpet. also the balls are not soccer balls anymore, they are plastic wrapped in cloth, this years balls will definitely have more give than soccer balls used back in 2006. This may make the “baseball machine” design useless or highly ineffiecent? i dont know, maybe it will work? I was thining maybe a pneumatic cannon thats nice and simple, but the problem with that is the velocity will not be variable like the baseball pitcher design would.
Our team debated about a dumping mechanism too, we elected not to use it because in order for it to work, you have to get up close, be fast, accurate, and (this is the hard part) find some way to get it in the opponents trailer without leaving your 28" X 38" X 60" box. (remember that rule, we hate it too).
That is why we are planning on some sort of shooter. haven’t made too many decisions about that though.**
I am not sure I am feeling the Launcher. I think the most efficient designs are going to be a robot that can suck up the balls and place them in a hopper so they can be dumped or a robot that can “plow” the balls into the corral for the human player. Over the years I have been involved these kind of robots always succeed in the end.
I think the most efficient robot will be one that can not only scope up balls, and dump them into nearby trailers but…
track oposing trailers autonoumly, and launch balls across the feild into said trailers
I know we are fully planning on a fully turreting ball launcher. We will also attempt to track the opposing trailers at all times and have the computer handle all the shooting. If no one has tried it yet, it is quite easy to make the balls in the trailer. We are also planning a very quick ball harvester and large hopper so we can easily corral balls as well. I don’t think launching balls from any distance will be easy, but some teams will undoubtedly be able to accomplish this task, and the best of these will be the champions. This is of course just my opinion.
My $.02? You will see almost no successful launchers this year. A few teams will pull it off, and we will marvel at them and slap our forheads and say OF COURSE, but most of the most successful teams will find a way to get balls reliably and quickly to the human players (including all four empty cells) and then have a human player who is absolutely golden scoring goals.
Someone namedropped Aim High; I’m thinking more like 2004 here.
I seee the teams that have been around a lot longer will have an advantage and will be more likely to build a succcessful shooter, EXCEPT there will be a few teams that find and make simple shooters. the rest of us that didn’t attempt it because of complexity will hit ourselves.
And of course thier will be a fair amount of unsuccessful failures.
The balls are a little irregular, so using a flywheel cannon would be a bit inconsistent from one shot to the next. Plus, to score on a shot ball, you would have to miss the center pole and hit just on the side, including the correct height. It would be extremely difficult to do this in my mind.
For a shooter to work you need to stay under 60 in. at all times. Saying that you have to top feed the shooter and have the shooter at the bottom. Teams who are thinking of big hopper and a shooter will a problem if they are attempting a rotating turret because of the height restrictions. say 20" for a hopper that leaves 40" (the optimal height u want ur shooter to be.
I definitely have an idea for at least a 40" tall hopper, basically the dimensions of the drivetrain with a turreted shooter at 40"+ I am not planning on posting up the design or anything but so far its looking like it can be done fairly easily with room for at least 20 balls. Also throwing the balls is quite simple, at least for my team.
Heck yea, we’re doing a shooter too. I prototyped a successful launcher yesterday that went 8 feet, and the students are almost done prototyping a shooter today. Combine it with a turret and camera and you’re golden – they key is the type of shooter. Get creative, you don’t have to use flywheel style…
We’re not using a hopper though. Our overall game strategy dictates that we won’t have the time to collect large amounts of moonrocks, so we’ll fire what we get almost as soon as we get it. We’ll have a max of 6 moonrocks in our bot at once, and probably then only at the start. This is for simplicity’s sake though…