Facilities benchmarking


Our team is looking to learn from others about how they find/create the best build locations while keeping costs down. I know some build in the schools but that isn’t an option for us; what about at the sponsor facility? community centers? Looking for all and any feedback that would be helpful. AND-would love to know more about what to do with old robots; read through the postings and found a few ideas from a hall of fame to dismantling for parts or recruiting efforts; thoughts there? thanks!


Team 1629 was in that situation for a while, where we had to travel from school to school and building to building until…Our county commissioners got on board with us and we found a great facility in our county that was not being used. Some of the mentors got together and made a presentation to the county commissioners and they accepted the presentation/offer as a way for our team to teach robotics to other parts of the community outside of FIRST. One of our mentors started a “club” of sorts and it became “G.E.A.R.S.” standing for the Garrett Engineering and Robotics Society. This building is a 5000 square foot building maintained by the county until we can get enough paying memebers to for it to function on its own!!! Our building now is home to Team 1629 Robotics and several of our FIRST LEGO League teams. We have a full field set up for FRC and FLL. Just come up with some creative ideas and find the location and make a presentation or submit a creative idea to whomever might be in charge of that facility. You can check out the website at www.gearsinc.org for more information about Team 1629 and GEARS!!! Good luck in your search!!!


We have a sponsor who lets us build in unused space. We just have to keep the room neat and not build when a film crew is inside. This year, though, we moved a lot of our operation to a vacant building next to (and owned by) the church that runs our school. Made life a whole lot easier in terms of access and friends coming in. We’ll probably stay until we need to leave due to plans to tear the building down (which haven’t been finalized yet).

Old robots are testbeds for code and prototypes. We have three “immobilized” robots that can’t move due to motor failure or we just don’t want them to move. Another one was used as a prototype until our practice robot was running.


Our awesome sponsor lends us a corner in his shop to use, along with the usage of his machines and even employees. It’s awesome.

This came about when we were kicked out of a sponsor’s building because they were expanding and couldn’t build on. That was after we were kicked out of the high school. And that came about after we moved from another sponsor’s facility that was pretty far from Sherrard and Moline HS’s.

Just ask your sponsors or find a sponsor that would be willing to provide space, rather than funds. I think most companies would rather do that than give you money. Also, you could set up a wall of robots there too. Our sponsor put all of our robots on top of shelving units circling our work area. Everyone of our robots has complete functionality, except for our first two, which random pieces are lying around the shop.

Good luck.