FRC 5969 - Rookie Robot is driving!

Team 5969, The English High School Skunkworks, is super excited to get our first ever robot driving around!

We’re using the Rhino Treads provided by Andymark, and have built a custom cage for our electronics. Motor controllers are attached to the top panel, and everything else is on the bottom panel.


Close-up Photo

We’re working on a shooter for our ball that will attach in the space in the front. Since we’re in the Northeast, we’re losing an entire next week due to February vacation, so with the 4 days we have left, we hope to have a function shooter ready!

Wish us luck!

Looks good! The only problem I would see with that is such the low clearance under it. You may get stuck on the rough terrain, moat, possibly even rock wall and cheval de freise (however you spell it). It should work perfectly fine if all you want it to do is go under the low bar and shoot.

We’re worried about that as well. Our plan is to move up the cage since it’s made of profiled extrusion, and attach a flat sheet to the bottom. We’re waiting for the shooter to get attached before we do that though. Would that be enough protection?

Do you guys have plans for fabricating and mounting bumpers? If your team is only able to meet 4 more times before bag and tag, at this point I’d suggest focusing entirely on making the robot competition legal, and only then on additional scoring devices.

Keep in mind that in order to shoot the ball effectively, aside from having a capable shooting mechanism you need an effective ball acquisition method, as well as accurate and consistent lineup. A robot that only drives can be a great contributor to a multitude of alliances for playing defense, breaching and challenging. One that can collect a ball, cross B & D defenses and score it in the low goal or just drop it off is sure to have a place on any team’s picklist.

I hope you guys have a great rookie season. Good luck!

Nice Job so far! Have you guys thought about how you’re going to mount bumpers and support them, especially on the front of the tank treads?

We don’t have much machining ability yet, so we’re using the COTS Rhino bumper mounts that Andymark sells.

Rhino Bumper Kit

The wood backing is already cut and ready to mount, so bumpers should be done today.

Cool! Sounds like y’all are making good progress.

From your close up photo, it appears that you have support between the two tracks exclusively in the back of the robot. Adding a cross member in the front would do wonders to improve stiffness and prevent the robot from sustaining major damage should it get hit wrong or end up hitting a defense harder than intended. Something to keep in mind as you build your shooter and collector

Why is it so wide? You might want a more narrow robot to play on the batter better.

Either way, great progress, especially for a rookie team.

Good luck, guys! That’s awesome, pretty good for a rookie team! :slight_smile:

I think because our shooter is not finalized, we’re just saving real estate right now. We’ll take the suggestion and try to narrow the robot.

How stiff is your frame in this configuration? I feel like any side impacts could cause severe damage to your rhino tread mounting plates without additional cross-bracing near the front of the robot (adding mechanisms that span the gap in front could resolve that)

What is the width of the robot right now? After adding in the bumper brackets, the length of the Rhino treads will be about 32 inches long. That leaves <28 inches per side, but the robot looks wider than that (maybe it’s perspective in that photo?)

Team 5969 Welcome to FIRST

We are on the other side of the country!! Hope to see you sometime…

We are Team 1983 Skunk Works Robotics…sponsored by Lockheed Martin and Boeing and a bunch of other Aerospace Companies.

We are in Seattle and affiliated with the Museum of Flight and located at Raisbeck Aviation High School
Welcome to FIRST!!!

Have you checked your frame perimeter? Knowing that those rhino-tracks are at least 30 inches long, I’m really concerned your frame perimeter will exceed the 120 inches allowed.

Great job overall, but please check your perimeter soonest.

+1 check frame perimeter if it can’t fit through a doorway that would scare me. I wouldn’t worry too much about ground clearance we have a rhino track clone and about an inch of ground clearance we have no problems going over obstacles build some field elements and try it out good luck

Just checked frame perimeter last night and made some adjustments! Thanks, everyone, for the advice! =)


  1. Fixed the chassis size. Perimeter is now 118 inches.
  2. Added a shooting mechanism. Still need to figure out how to attach our window motor to the pivot point. =/



Good luck! But, could you explain the word “vacation” to me? Do you mean that stretch of five days when classes do not meet next week, allowing us six 14hr work days?

Hehe, I wish we could… =(

Circumstances prevent this.