First Injuries

Ok. I’m sick, I’m morbid, and there is definately something wrong with my brain. I just want to hear about various injuries people have sustained while working on the robot. I have many good ones myself such as almost getting a tracheotomy from our robot last year. In fact I have scars from every robot I have built. I literally put some of myself into each of those robots

I want to hear your injury stories. How have you hurt yourself or how has other people’s stupidity hurt you?

Here’s one to get people started. A near injury actually. One of the in-experienced (read: stupid) members of our team was having difficulty making a dimple in the table with a punch, in order to get the drill started. The table was coated in steel and we were drilling through it to mount a machine.

He decided he could hit the punch harder if he used both hands. So he took a rag and wrapped it arround the punch to hold it upright. Then he took the small 9lb. slege and wacked the punch with both hands. He didn’t hit it right on and the punch flew across the room missing my head by about half a foot. It hit the wall point first and took a bit of the (concrete) wall out. I was really too stunned to be mad.

I wonder what effect a high velocity punch would have on the human cranium…

At the Viriginia State Fair last year, my team was letting all the rookies drive. It turned out to be a bad idea… the hammer to Peacemaker was ripped off our robot by two girls who decided it would be cute to try and lift up one of the mid-field rails while moving forwards at full speed. Anyways…

Peacemaker develops a problem with his treads halfway through the Fair. I can see the right tread starting to slip off, so I climb over the field barriers to investigate. The rookie driver was warned by 3 different people to stop moving at this point, while I try to pop the treads back on. Apparently he got twitchy and moved the robot forward as my hands were in the robot. My left pointer finger was sucked into the drive pulley of our robot’s treads (I’m still thankful that we used a belt that year, opposed to the chain-driven design that would not have spared my finger). The rookie apparently did not understand my yells to move backwards so I could get my finger out, and twitched forward some more. At this point a veteran team member nearby shoved him out of the way and backed up the robot, then we both went off to find medical attention. The rookie never showed up to one build season meeting. I was left with a flat finger for a week and a bad-looking fingernail for 3 or 4 months.

That’s been my only severe robotics-related incident… the Mech Techs have never really had any problems with tools or anything like that, so everything’s fine there. Only a few standard cuts and bruises that seem to appear out of thin air.

Well, this one was a near injury they have yet to let me live down…

Last year during the build season, I was drilling holes into the frame of the cage for our electronics and pneumatics so we could bolt the frame together. I pulled the drill out of the hole, the bit was still spinning. Somehow the bit ended up twisted into the leg of my jeans. I didn’t have anything worse than a large scratch on my leg, but I really scared the engineers in the room. They tried to pull the drill out, but it went in further. They ended up putting the drill in reverse to pull it out. I definitely had to explain that one to my mom when I came home with a large hole in side of the knee of my jeans. Still have that pair of jeans, they’re my “drill pants”…

~Melissa

Last year I was playing arround with one of the tension springs that was in the lab. I was unwinding it as far as it would go and letting it go and snap back. I didn’t notice that every time it snapped back, it was moving so fast it cut my hands. Finally I noticed that the spring was getting wet. I looked at it and it was COVERED in blood! So were my hands. i had about 6-7 cuts that were bleeding and dozens more that were just superficial. There was so much blood that it looked like i had hit a major vessel.

Well every time the battery needs replacing in our bot someone (usually ends up being me) has to reach in and around a few things to get at it. Then when the velcro finally lets go my hand goes flying into the corner of some extruded aluminum…Did that oh 20 times or so before we moved the battery…

Verticle mill, milling some motor mounts, snapping bits occasionally, they go flying accross the shop usually…Once it didn’t make it accross the shop because it found the side of my head first…luckily it hit me sideways, so i was ok (i’m here, aren’t i? lol)

Again on the mill, except this time drilling out rather large holes, that aluminum gets dang hot…I forgot about that once as I went to pick the freshly drilled piece up…my hand then went flying and i banged the side of the mill pretty hard - double wammy.

Again w/ the mill (can u tell I am the only person on my team that is a good Miller…lol) those dang metal splinters…Got more of them than I can count…

None of those are terribly major - but annoying none the less.

i’ve never been really injured, other than the usually cut up hands from working on the robot, you know…
sharp metal objects + skin = cuts

last year at nationals, i remember someone on the team pitted next us cut the tip of their finger off. apparently he got it cought in the chain. there was blood everywhere.

You mech boys can’t have all the fun!

Im amazed no one’s posted with some run ins with hot soldering irons. I’ve had plenty of those… My favorite burn of all time was one that I swear was a picture perfect map of the hawien islands on my hand. You could make it out for weeks afterwords.

I still don’t know how that happend, one second the iron is in my hand, the next it’s rolling on top of my hand, and then its on the floor and I’m screaming bloody murder. Funny how that is…

Oh, and never drop a battery on your foot, they’re kinda heavy.

-Andy A.

Gosh I couldn’t even list all the stupid things that have happened … but I can give you the most hilarious one.

Our team took some of the college kids on the battlebots team that had never really built anything out to the shop. A guy on our FIRST team took the tip of his finger off with the bandsaw, not too bad, we’ve all done it. Anywho, one of the chicks freaks out and runs outside throwing up like no other, apparently she really didn’t like blood, after a few more incidents she quit all involvement with robotics. Kinda sad, but we all did laugh a little.

asher

One of our team members picked up a soldering pen by the hot end. Twice within a span of 3 days actually. I wonder what the average leaning curve one hot things, is for lab rats? Probably slightly above 1.

Here are three (two injuries and one ALMOST)

  1. One of the team members was using the soldering iron, and he hit it off of the table. common accident. Then in all of his cat reflexes he grabs it before it hits the ground:D Of course he grabs it by the actual Iron part. Ouch.

  2. a Simple request I had for another team member. “Yo, throw me over the drill” we were all pretty much sitting on the carpet working on whatever, I had to put some screws into the ramp from last year when we were making it. The first person I asked ignored me, then the second person, in all of his Senior intelligence decided that he would fulfill my request to the letter, so of course the next thing I know there is a Battery Powered, airborne, coming at my head! I moved away as fast as I could but it still got me, right in the thigh! I had a hole IN my thigh! I could see bone I swear!! luckily it didn’t hurt much after the initial shock and it didn’t bleed too much. Still I use that incident as a “Remember when you threw that drill into my leg, yeah, I think you can drive me home, you owe it to me”

  3. Last year our bot had a reallly big Claw to pick up the big balls, and our was of course pneumatic. Well it happens that pivot points, leverage, and unregulated pistons make things move fast. Well we didn’t have any flow control valves on the claw when we made the prototype. The first time we tried it a few of us gathered around to see! Well one person got a little too close and the claw moved so fast and with so much power, it made him deaf for the next hour in his one ear. Ya see we failed to notice that when it closed it would end up being mere millimeters away from this certain members ear, if it would have been any closer we all swear it would have taken off his ear!

Um…Once the college kid on our team had a run in with the soldering iron and it hurt her hand…

When we were getting the rough spots out of the holes in the plastic sheets on our robots we were using razor blades…I sliced my fingers a few times doing that…nothing major…

Then people sometimes get the welder’s tan…

Only person to actually hurt themselves is our mentors through various stuff…

That is all I can think of…

Ooh boy, the reason I didn’t include soldering irons in my post is because there are so many incidents involving them, myself, and a senior last year named Mark…

Last year we were working on soldering our control board, and it was a several day process. Mark had his own soldering iron, so he had to take it home every day. However, it had a cardboard box, so he obviously had to let it cool before it went in the box. His favorite technique of determining whether it was cool or not - touch it to your palm.

“Hey mark! Is it cool yet?”
“Hang on… let me check…”
YELP
“Yeah, it’s still hot.”

I removed my left pointer finger’s fingerprint while working with a soldering iron and a hot-glue gun. I accidently brushed the soldering iron with my finger while getting up from the desk, realized I had to finish something quickly before it cooled down, hot-glued a part, and then brushed my finger against the hot glue, which stuck to the previously soldered part of my finger. Ouch.

hmmm…we had to backdrive our lift chain by hand after a match to get to a ball wedged into our chassis…and my fingers got pulled up in between the chain and the sprockets…talk abou ta painful experiance…

Last fall when we were working on our fall project, 2 rookies were working on a robot arm, and one was making adjustments to the arm, and the other one was adjusting the code…

well this kid downloaded the code into the robot while the kid was working on the arm and then the arm went nuts due to the fact that this kid put a wrong value in for something and the arm went completely haywire…

Well the injury that came out of it was that the kid who was working on it got a nice size chunk ripped off of the palm of his hand (near the wrist)…some kids learmed some safety lessons that day…

I’ll add some more details to DJ’s story…

This arm was actually the robot arm from our 1999 robot (yes the big lexan one, pretty powerful), and after it got done the arm was twisted like a pretzel…:slight_smile:

we’re only had like, one major accident. One of the kids on our team sliced his finger or something. All i know is that i was upstairs… then came in the building room… and they say that one of our Teachers and a kid are @ the hospital cause he like cut a bunch of skin off or something… O, and our robot is a walking disease. Our engineer thinks its funny to wipe his blood ALL OVER the robot when he bleeds… he gets like metal shavings and crap all in his cuts… but hes an ogre… wut do ya expect?

We had a kid nail himself with a hacksaw … lots of blood.

Oh yea and our robot almost got hurt once (this years bot) …when we accidently pulled the knock over mechnism back in too quickly and she fell over onto her back.

Hmm… no real injuries over here other than some cuts & scrapes from working on the robot. Don’t know how I get them, but I just do…

Then again, I’m on the controls team, so I don’t get hurt…
I get electrocuted. A few run-ins with electricity. Of course nobody was around…

Ive had too many small cuts and burns from working on the robot to count, but my most interesting injury (while not really robot related) came while I was working on a computer. I stuck my arm all the way into a tower case for some reason or other ( dont rememeber) and while pulling it out snagged a sharp corner and cut myself from my elbow all the way to my middle knuckle. The funny thing is I didnt realize it until I saw large red smears all over the case. I then realized my arm was literally covered in blood and it was all over the computer and florr (this happened in school btw). I spent the next week or so cleaning my blood off the motherboard.

oh yea, i forgot about this one…

last year an engineer was cutting some aluminum on a radial arm saw and i guess he came down to fast with the blade. it kicked back and broke his hand. it also threw a nice sized piece of aluminum into his hand inbetween his thumb and pointer finger. he didn’t come back this year…