Boston Allstars Build Thread

The Boston Allstars is a group of graduating seniors from Boston-area teams we are gathering to build a robot for the 2023 game to compete at Summer Heat in Maine this summer. We currently have members from 6 teams: FRC 246 ‘Lobstah Bots’, FRC 2423 ‘The KwarQs’, FRC 2713 ‘Red Hawk Robotics’, FRC 4761 ‘The Robockets’, FRC 6201 ‘The Highlanders’, and FRC 8567 ‘Team Ultraviolet’. The group was organized by 2423 and their team captain @bianca. We’re currently meeting at the KwarQs’ build space in Watertown, MA. if any seniors are interested in participating you can reach out on this thread or through CD direct messages.

Some of the contributors on this thread will include:
@bianca
@Amiyr2423
@SammyManFryingPan
@PeterStory
and me @BrendanManning

We’re still in the relatively early phases of our design, but we’ll be using OnShape, so once we have a clear idea of where we’re going there’ll be a link to the CAD. Our current plan is to use WCP SwerveX modules with NEOs and a ThriftyBot Elevator. We’re still considering a number of intake designs. We also have access to a KOP drivetrain as a back up. We will also be posting our code repo.

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Neat…how are you sourcing parts for this? Are all of your teams collaborating on this bot or is this sort of a project of several individuals?

Sounds sort of like a group of kids who want to immediately get back into FRC with a robot in 3 days style group.

I’d sincerely caution you all to take some time away from robotics too, enjoy the rest of your senior year. But, up to you.

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We have some limited funding and 2423 has a sponsor who will 3D print parts for us. We’re sourcing our larger parts (electrical system, motors) from our teams. This isn’t our full teams participating, just a member or two from each team.

We are meeting on a lighter schedule than a regular FRC build season.

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Also, originally planned it as a silly low-resource build (i was so ready to use jaguars!), but it seems we aren’t going back to our low-resource roots anymore. :joy:

This is something me and my friends tried to do in our senior year but never got this far - I’m excited to see your efforts! Good luck!

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Can I make the suggestion that the group collectively work to find some struggling teams in the area that could use the collective wisdom and experience to improve those robots/teams for the event instead of building something net new?

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This is an awesome idea. If you want to go build robots, go and build some robots! Good on y’all for getting together and making this happen. I am looking forward to seeing the end product.

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From the coach perspective, this is an entirely student-led effort and builds relationships across teams that make the whole Boston area stronger. While mentoring another team is a good suggestion, FIRST is about empowering students (even seniors) to learn and grow. I’m proud of them for taking on such a challenging project on their own, and I’m happy to support the things they want to build.

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It’s also more valuable if they can get this experience and come back later to mentor with the knowledge they gathered from this.

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For some added context, several of the teams involved do struggle with resources in some level or another. The offseason in question is also a decently far distance away, to the point where most of the teams don’t ever go, and the idea of sending a single collaborative robot might make more sense.

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While I get the idea of making an area stronger through collaboration (this is a huge aspect 177 is making moves to advocate this offseason through our own efforts) , I think if that’s the goal then it can be executed with more members of the cooperating teams involved.

Regardless, have fun! Use your skills, knowledge, and resources wisely!

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This is cool. Good luck! You’ll learn a ton.

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If you were asking me to set up a project with similar criteria - I’d ask the outgoing seniors to focus less on doing and more on taking some freshmen|rookies on the journey. It builds connection across teams via the freshmen|rookies, build skills, and cross pollinates design and fabrication processes which is extremely useful imho.

But it’s your project, have fun. I’m just armchair mentoring over here.

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Same here, I don’t mean to be critical here of something that you feel is benefiting your area. I’ve just seen alumni in projects like Ri3D not make and follow specific goals that actually benefit the community, so I’m probably projecting here quite a bit.

Since most of our main teams still have spring offseasons (BattleCry and Summer Heat) as seniors we’ve chosen to step away from our main robots to let the younger students take ownership of main robot improvements. Most of us will also be training rookie drive teams at BattleCry, so don’t worry, our younger students have plenty to do!

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(emphasis mine)

With Ri3D specifically I think we as a community have come to expect that those groups focus on generating data and providing resources which will help teams, especially low-resource ones, during the season. So Ri3D teams that don’t make these goals get poked and prodded. Are you saying that you think alumni projects like this should make goals that benefit the community (ie. mentoring other teams) as opposed to making their own robot?

That’d be my guidance yes, but this isn’t my project. Sorry for the backseat/armchair mentoring.

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Boston area teams!!!: Our final batch of invitations and information went out tonight!

If you are interested and in the Boston area but your team did not receive an invitation, dm us here or @kwarqs2423 on instagram so we can correct this! (we’re sorry if we missed a few, there’s a lot of teams here!)

We’re also proud to welcome Team 3205, “The Patriots”, to Boston Senior All-Stars!

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Hello all,

We’ve mostly finalized our plan for our general robot design. It will, of course, be subject to change. We’ve settled on a 24” by 24” drive base with SwerveX modules run with NEOs. We’ll be using a ThriftyBot Elevator and an intake mostly taken from FRC 246’s 2023 robot.

Here’s a picture of our current CAD:

And here’s the current CAD link:
CAD v1

We’ve also added members from Teams 8604 ‘Alpha Centauri’ and Team 1761 ‘STEAMpunk Tigers’. Moving forward we’re planning to start chassis assembly and electronics design and complete some other more detailed design parts and fixes.

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Hi all,

We’ve established an Instagram page and a landing page for us to be able to share updates and information to broader audiences. On another branding note, we’ve established our team’s color scheme as red and black. (very cool)

This Saturday, we focused on putting together our chassis. We decided to use REV MAXTube for the frame of the chassis. We chose this because it was what we had on hand and it allows us to add reinforced steel, which lowers our robot’s center of gravity and prevents frame damage. We have also decided to make our belly pan out of steel, further helping to keep a low CG. For our swerve modules, we are using SwerveXs that 2423 have on hand.

While the chassis was being manufactured, our design team modified our intake system to a one motor system. We had originally planned on using a claw with compliant wheels, similar to 246’s. However, this would not fit within our budget, so we had to come up with alternatives. Currently, the design team is split between two ideas: either a belt actuating both wheels, or a four gear chain.

Towards the end of the day, while the design team figured out the intake design and electronics layout, the rest of the team went out and bought materials for bumpers. We’ll be creating white on black vanity bumpers featuring our robot’s name.

On the software side, we’re primarily running swerve code based on 2713’s codebase. Most of the hardware we’ll be using is similar to 2713’s robot, and it is fairly robust in terms of potential for modification to fit our needs as they pop up. For example, we will be using a NavX MXP (instead of the Pigeon2 gyro 2713 was using), but with I/O layering, we will be able to quickly switch between different gyros in the event that ours fails, or we obtain a different model which better suits our needs. We are using a command-based framework, and will most likely attempt to use PathPlanner to generate autonomous routines, if we have adequate time.

Over the next week, we’re planning to finalize our robot design, finish putting together our chassis and start building our main components. Some of the current issues we’re working through in our design are power transmission for our Elevator mechanisms, motor controller placement, bumper mounting, and end-effector wire runs. In terms of software, we’ll begin constructing our subsystems now that our robot’s design has mostly gelled, and we will begin to attempt to use AdvantageScope to test our capabilities in simulation for initial PID tuning.

Thank you for reading :slight_smile:

Aleksandr Usanov (1761)
Peter Story (2713)
Brendan Manning (4761)
Sammy Mounsif (2713)

[email protected]

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