Clarification on Bumper Rules

Our robot’s chassis will be made from aluminum angle beam. The top and bottom halves of the chassis will be held apart by about 9 inches of more angle beam.

We plan on attaching the bumper on the bottom angle beam of the chassis, but seeing as the two beams are spaced 9 inches apart, the bumper (being five inches tall, according to the rules) will not reach both beams.

To add support to the bumper, we plan on placing aluminum flat beams between the main frame at 8 inch intervals (the rule states it must be supported every 8 inches).

My question is, does the bumper need to be supported on both the top and bottom, or will we still be within the rules if we support the bottom of the bumper and have vertical supports along the bumper’s length?

Hopefully this is clear enough, thanks for the help.

This is best asked of the Q&A. Your stated design leaves a lot of questions. What size of aluminum angle, what thickness,etc. R07, K would seem to be your guide in answering this question. Does it satisfy being mounted to robot structure/frame or just support material?

Although Al certainly is better qualified to answer this, I would say that in the past most robots have legally supported bumpers in a fashion similar to yours…

My interpretation of the rules is that if you look at the back of the bumper, the entire length of the bumper must be supported (except for up to 8" sections); however, the entire height of the bumper doesn’t need to be directly supported by the robot frame. For example, our bumpers have often been mounted by bolting the bumpers to angle-brackets which are bolted onto the robot frame (either 80-20 or C-channel). The top and bottom edges are not actually against the frame… Naturally we ensure that the bumpers are secure, even though they’re cantilevered.

So, I think, if I understand your robot correctly, that it is legal but that you should first draw a picture and use the Q&A and then truly be sure that the bumpers are secure… just because it’s legal doesn’t mean it’s a good idea! :slight_smile: