Bumpers: why not?

I was very suprised by the amount of teams without bumpers and the number of ramming penalties incured by those teams. Why would any team now want bumpers? If you have a ball grabber then just put the bumers on the back and hit people backwards.

1549 had bumpers and we did lots of hard hitting never getting a ramming penalty. Bumpers also allow you to add 15 pounds to the robot. Extra C in F=ukC is always welcome!

Our bot didn’t need bumpers to protect itself and we could not afford andextra 15 pounds added. we ended up at 119.9 pounds

the 15 pounds do not go toward your 120, they are in addition to the limit of 120. This means you can legally weigh 135 with the bumpers on.

You get an additional 15 lbs just for the bumpers (that is, 15 lbs on top of the 120 you’re allowed for the robot).

<R10> The weight of any bumper assemblies included on the robot that are in compliance with Rule <R35> is excluded from the robot weight limit specified in Rule <R09>, up to a maximum of 15 pounds.

<R35> Goes into more detail about bumper specifications, if you’re interested.

In any case, 857 doesn’t have bumpers simply because we didn’t have enough time to make them. That might change at the Milwaukee regional, though.

We had trouble with the ramp with the bumpers on…and the only place on the robot that recieved damage was in the ball intake area where we can’t put a bumper anyways.

Sorry I didn’t know that 15 pounds were added onto the 120, but still our bot is really solid and doesn’t need bumbers. Also we didn’t have time to make them even if we wanted them

The bumpers were a huge problem for us on the ramp. They allowed us to get up but we could not get back down. The first time we tried we fell and damaged a critical part of our robot. We only had to remove them from the back though, so we still have protection on our sides.

I determined early on that bumpers would not match the aesthetic sensibilities of the rest of our design, thus, we have no bumpers. :slight_smile:

A very valid and simple reason to not have bumpers:

They easily go into the lower goals beyond 3". They will result in your team being disqualified in the seeding rounds or your entire alliance being DQed in the elimination rounds.

Even if you are pushed in by an opposing robot - you will be DQed.

Bumpered beware!

-Mr. Van
Coach, 599

Good point. I never thought about the corner goal penalty.

This is where I see fault with FIRST and not the team. We would have designed bumpers within this weight limit that wouldn’t have entered the goal but because of the standard bumper configuration, we are forced to make them a certain way. Generally we avoid those areas anywho.

it cant be that hard to add an offset at the top of you robot to keep you from entering the goal.
Like 2 of those spring doorstops. they don’t weight anything and they’d work just fine.

When your robot is right at 120 lbs (us) you cant add anything. Plus that thing sticking out can interact with other robots infringing on the contact rules for touching robots ouside the bumperzone.

Just curious: Why would you ever need to go down the ramp during a match? I cannot think of a possible reason - but then again, I’m not very imaginative. Any enlightenment would be received gratefully.


if you get pushed up the opponets ramp, then you need to go down so they dont get the points, and so youcan continue playing.

There are several robots that are designed to shoot from atop the ramp. They must get off the ramp to not score points for their opponents and to collect more balls.

or they could just build some thing that dips down to touch the floor . . .

we had this problem since we didnt have a bumper on our front where we have the ball loader/corner goal scorer and we almost had problems but then we cut the bumpers back so they dont extend past the end of the chassis problem=solved

btw ramming is still a penality regardless of bumpers or not bumpers may allow you to increase you speed doing it but not much we got a penality for ramming with our unprotected side during autonomous but they still would’ve given us the penality even if we had done it backward where we have bumpers---- just a warning

We had to remove our “front” bumpers for this reason. :frowning:

Bill Pease
Aces High Team 176
2006 UTC New England Champions with 177 and 1124
2006 BAE Granite State Finalists with 319 and 562
2005 UTC New England Engineering Inspiration Award

Yes, your bumpers can extend past that limit. the solution? we got the idea from a few other teams to put a guard up so that our robot would stop before its bumpers could get too far into the goal.
The ‘guard’ was just a peice of metal placed at each corner of the robot, just inside the bumpers. this allowed for us to stop before we reached the sensor, and therefore wouldnt get a penalty.