We have a dumper that drops 5 power cells at once into the bottom port. When the dumper gate drops, it extends over the lip of the bottom port by 2 inches. The gate does not make contact with the goal. Rule G.18 says a robot may not extend into the bottom port to disrupt the scoring mechanism. Are we allowed to extend into the port as long as we don’t disrupt the scoring mechanism? In “Power-Up” many bots, including ours, extended into the lower goal to feed the power cubes with no penalty. Your opinions, please.
That’s exactly how I read the rule. Extending into the port to improve your reliability at entering PC into the port seems to be allowed.
I also don’t see anything in the Game Rules: Robots (G1-G20) that would prohibit this, but I will continue to look.
Added: I found two more things that would apply: S4 as @AriMB notes below, and the essentially equivalent-to-each-other rules which prohibit extensions beyond 12 inches from your frame perimeter (G18 and R4). [My understanding here is that R4 is going to justify the inspection item and G18 is the penalty if it happens during competition.]
Added-added: As always, remember that chiefdelphi.com is a community forum, not an official source of FIRST decisions. If our rulings don’t convince you, or if you want to push the envelope anyway, the Q&A is the official pre-match target for your questions. Should your team decide to post a Q&A question, check for previous questions and be as specific as possible as to what you want to do, what rules you believe may possibly limit it, and why any previous questions’ answers do not answer your question. Sloppy questions almost universally receive a response rather than an answer. Heck, well-phrased questions sometimes receive a response.
S4 is the rule you care about
“Momentary incursions into the BOTTOM PORT” are specifically called out as exceptions to this ‘no leaving the field’ rule. You should note that “momentary” is specifically defined in the manual as less than 3 seconds.