Effectiveness of Kicking vs. Pushing

So, I think there are the two main categories(of mechanisms, strategy may vary) for this year(similar to shooter/dumper from last year). Kicking would be effective for getting the ball long range down the field/Getting the ball between zones. This would be useful in the case that you’re robot was in the opposite alliance’s zone. Pushing will be most useful to score the balls in the goal’s(Gentler). Thoughts on the subject/Thoughts on which one will be more widespread this year?

I don’t think you need to compromise at all. I would guess that all you need to do to score short range is drive a ball into the goal. Having a kicker while still maintaining this ability should not be too challenging. Even a variable power kicker to modify your range should be not too bad to design.

I see kicking as the best way to get the balls into the goals, even in your own zone, because then you dont have to spend the time to move to the goal, then move back to get another ball.

for regionals, I expect there to be a wide range of kickers, but still many teams will push the balls (either to a really bad kicking design, or no kicking mechanism at all). Once the championships roll around, i think there will be more kickers than pushers.

I think that kicking would be more popular because by pushing you have to move very close to the goal, and there is always that chance that pushing would not get it into the goal.

So kicking for the win. =]

What about a shooter? I think that this might be hard since we can’t hold a ball, but I am sure some teams could come up with something!

I agree that “kickers” (or robots that can “physically repel the ball using some mechnical device”) will be much better than just “pushers.” However, in the offence zone, I think pushers might do OK. It will be interesting to see what happens in week 1.

I think a more important question to as would be angled kicks or horizontal kicks(rolls)?
I’d imagine rolling would be more accurate and easier to get into the goals, but it may have trouble with the bumps where angled kicks could clear them easily.

I had that same “angle versus flat” idea…and was thinking of there was any way to change the angle of the contact surface on the “kicker”…im pretty stumped right now, but I guaruntee its possible

i agree. Ill use an example from lunacy to back up kickers. Our robot had a conveyor belt to pick up empty cells and deliver them to the fueling stations. even though we were right there sometimes when we ran the conveyor we still missed. When you only have so man seconds to complete a task its imperative to do ti right the first time, and quickly. when you get down to it the time spent pushing seems to me a great deal more than kicking. if you have a kicker and miss you can easily get another ball and kick from that new location, where as with a pusher you have to drive all the way back to the goal.

Of course I could go to the boiler maker regional and see a team with the most beastly pusher and they win the whole thing, but I do not see that as likely.

rolls! a good point. as with soccer, and golf, and many other sports with balls, SPIN has a great deal of influence on behavior of said balls. SPIN aught to be an item teams look into if they plan to kick and or roll.

Where did you get the idea that we can’t hold the ball? The way I read the rules, the only prohibition is against “carrying” the ball. In the rules, “carrying” is defined as “POSSESSING a BALL that is not in contact with the FIELD” So as long as the ball stays in contact with the field, you can “hold” it as long as you want. I would recommend being careful climbing ramps while holding though, it would be difficult to keep the ball in contact with the field at all times during a ramp portage…

the BALLS cannot extend more than 3 inches inside the FRAME PERIMITER <r19>

as long as you abide by that you can “hold”

I think you could accomplish changing the contact piece by having the contact piece have different possible shapes to hit the ball. Then, have a motor rotate the contact piece to change the contact shape.

I had an interesting thought regarding kicking, especially kicking at an angle to clear bumps. The ball is ~9 inches in diameter, and the bumpers extend ~3.5 inches off the frame of the robot starting at 10 inches off the ground. This leaves about one inch of space between the bumper and ball. The bumper extends about 1/3 of the diameter of the ball. This is all well and good, but if you were to add a concave area underneath the bumper to help maintain control of the ball you add an additional 3 inches underneath the bumper. The ball is now 2/3 underneath the bumper and trying to get enough lift under it to clear the bumps may be difficult due to the ball hitting the bumper. What are your thoughts on this?

Your frame perimeter is supposed to be the part that hits the wall first were you to hit a wall without bumpers on. Therefore, I don’t think it would be legal to attach anything onto the underside of the bumpers. I don’t know the rule number, but there’s one that says you can extend past the frame perimeter to the bumper perimeter for two seconds every two seconds. So if you wanted to attach anything that controls the ball that way, it would have to be attached to the frame and then actuate outward.

Nurnburger, I don’t you understood what I was saying. I was talking about two areas. There is the area between the outside of the bumper and the outside of the frame perimeter (~3.5 inches) and an area inside the frame perimeter (up to 3 inches) for a total of ~6.5 inches of penetration of the ball beneath the bumper.

You couldnt add the section under the bumper because that piece would be an extension of your frame, and then the bumpers would have to go on the ends of that. And its been my experience that FRC likes their bumpers the way its in the manual without any modifications/concave sections

anyway, its probably a bit inefficient to try to take the balls over the bumps with you, at least take them through the tunnels

i havent thought much about a kicking mechanism all that much, but my main philosophy in this is that most of the problems have already been solved, so its just a matter of thinking about where the solution could be found. In this case, i bet soccer players could tell you the best ways to kick balls different areas

I think it’s really going to come down to the physics of it all. If you can get a really accurate kicker that can kick from all three zones, that’s great. But at the same time, the farther away you are the harder it will be to get accurate. Also, the video did say that if you kick really hard up close it won’t go on. So if a team has a really strong kicker and goes for the “forward” position, it may not be as effective as something that’s more like a pusher.

I feel this game more than ever will force teams to have to (either intentionally or not), build robots geared for a specific zone. A strong kicker could be good, so long as teams don’t over or undershoot.

Just to clarify, your concern is that having the ball approximately 6.5" within the bumper perimeter when initiating the “kick” could cause the ball to contact some part of the robot chassis and/or bumper before it has exited the bumper perimeter depending on the angle it is kicked?

It seems to me that this is a serious issue for a team that is trying to achieve long distance shots by means of kicking the ball into the air rather than along the carpet.

My thoughts exactly.
With intial thought, the physics wont allow the ball to catch air over the bump if your bumper is above and in the way of an angled kick.
Perhaps another method of rolling the ball via the carpet over the hump is a possibility.

Having to push balls to score them could be very frustrating, since the balls will need to be pushed up a 6" ramp without rolling off AND your drivers will be unable to see the ball for at least a few feet on approach due to the player station walls. Having to shoot towards yourself to score is going to feel alot different than recent FIRST games.