Great posts - but y’all need to invest in some safety glasses!
No meeting today!
Claw was updated and fixed to fit packaging constraints as well as being an actual mechanism
Intake has pneumatics and bolts/bushings.
Tube heights have been raised.
Everything is finalized to begin assembly/MFG
Things to design:
Cone shooter (?)
Looking to finish the alpha bot mechanically tomorrow, it’s a bit aggressive, but we’ll try our best.
Solo designer notes:
Sleep is very important, especially when you have to focus so hard on problem-solving in CAD. I had nine and a half hours of sleep one day and was extremely efficient when cadding, had five hours the next night and basically couldn’t do anything productive. Get your sleep even if it means not designing!
I think the hardest thing about this robot is keeping it as simple as possible while considering every single subteam and part of robotics to pull it off potentially (I don’t know if we can). There are lots of things to learn, and it’s still difficult to consider shipping lead times, what we have in stock, ease of assembly, ease of programming, etc. Lots to think about. This game was super duper fun to design for, and you can easily stay up late designing by accident.
Asking lots of people for help is also super useful to learn and design robots, thank you so much, Parker, for the design help today!
Anyway, no meeting today, so there are not too many details.
I still think you can hit a decent level with 1DOF, but it’s all theory crafting until next week. This game seems built on automation and driver practice, so we’re trying to go as fast as we can to make it work (we only meet four times a week officially so there’s lots of planning to make the meetings work)
Today’s meeting ran decently and could have been improved if we didn’t have so many shipping issues.
We finished manufacturing our entire alpha bot, and we got a bunch of assembly done, but we are waiting on things to arrive, so we aren’t entirely done. Mostly got our intake worked on today, as well as reinforcing our drivetrain for the new superstructure. The superstructure got repaired as well as we had some issues with cutting the box tubing wrong with maxtube grid pattern (i think mentioned in an earlier post. I printed a jig, but we’re always looking for more efficient ways, the tube is great though, it saves so much machining time. Tube plugs are awesome too.
The manipulator needs to still be built, but it’s simple enough that we can build it in the morning of our Saturday meeting, in parallel with finishing up our intake and arm.
With mcmaster somehow taking six days to ship from order, that kind of messed up our planning when the estimate was much sooner We had similar issues with shipping last year, so I can’t really be surprised, with our kitbot drive train arriving week 4-5 last year lol. We’ve planned out accordingly this year, but there is only so much you can plan out and predict.
Currently, we are down 28t 20 dp gears, 6 inch Omni wheels, and a lot of tube plugs, so we need to find a solution to that tonight. I think a local team offered some 6 inch omnis, but we’re going to be putting in an order tonight for a bunch of stuff.
The piston we wanted arrives on Monday, so we have to wait till then if we want the robot to be truly “complete” I think there are lots we can do beforehand, and maybe we run string and surgical tubing as a temporary solution.
Can’t really get much prototyping done till the robot’s done, so we’ll probably have lots of videos once that happens.
Auto balance code working! Uses bang bang.
Also auto alignment with April tags works using odometry
Yeah, I don’t know how it works, expect a programming post soon though.
Mini motors mishap
We suddenly lost a few falcons, so now we can’t get a 2nd falcon drivetrain. I still havent gotten around to calling VEX about our four missing falcons from a year ago, but I think it’s too late now. I think we’re able to ethically source them from borrowing from a local team, so thank you to them!
Mostly been doing refinements, so nothing new here, adding supports to the tube and getting reviewed for impact and loads.
Trying to get an absolute encoder enstalled 1-1 w/o the backlash, but it’s hard with the tradeoffs. Do I want mech to suffer or do I want to gamble on our assembly tolerances? Last time we did cross belt, we were too loose, and I’m worried that might be a problem, could add an idler maybe? Belt tensioning systems are hard if you want to make them perfect, but I might be overthinking it.
Design requires so much attention to detail it hurts my brain sometimes. Even 1dof arms are hard, this was wayyyy more difficult than I expected, and every design decision impacts the rest of the robot.
I’m having a new designer try to cad the cone shooter, though we need to get the field elements done before we can test and prototype it. We have a lot of room and weight avaliable, so I think it’s worth it to invest in this.
My internet is down today, and I dont have an adapter to attach my mouse to my laptop for a hotspot, so not much cad is happening tonight I think.
Maybe the CAD gods decided it was time for me to take a break. lol
Anyway, we have a large block of time on Saturday to get stuff done, hopefully, the robot gets mostly finished! Lots to learn in the incoming weeks, gotta fail fast and iterate fast, and hopefully, by building early we can get information from a real robot as soon as possible. We’re still pretty inexperienced, so there will be lots of stumbles along the way, but the experience has been really fun.
Still think this game is a software/drive practice game, so you got to have robust mechanisms that work consistently, and get lots of time for both on a working robot (your robot breaks a lot when you first build it).
Anyway, thanks for reading! Not sure what people really want us to post still, so questions are always appreciated. Trying to get more engagement so that we can help yall more.
edit: There is now a small superstructure, so the encoder setup should be easier, and the part count has been reduced by ~17 parts
The giant lever on the dead axel has been solved, which is nice.
The tradeoff is that single substation cones will be a lot harder if we want to do it, but I think I can figure out a solution by using 1339’s results in the future, for now, I’ll just ignore it because it makes building the robot much faster short term, as well as makes it simpler with fewer failure points, as well as makes the encoder setup a lot easier, in addition to decreasing the amount of weight at the top of the robot.
I’ll probably make the new encoder setup in the morning/evening, as we don’t have a meeting tomorrow.
Casually shows up in the first week with an almost finished robot.
Avg david moment
This robot looks like its gonna win a week 1 regional.
Bro your team is the actual grindset wth
The recap is coming soon!
Anyway, the 1 DOF dream is dead in terms of design changes. Long live 1.5 DOF.
The main idea is that programming can just work on alpha normally. Whenever we feel like it, “cheesecake” the l3 pneumatic piston system on, then they just have to do a piston extension to get l3 cones.
I wanted to get 1dof working, though, its a shame, but this should be less of a time investment than figuring out geometry constantly, and programming has to do less work.
Hopefully, for beta, we will have a larger superstructure, better battery placement, and a lot of ballast, as well as a new drive train made specifically for this game. (and a cone ramp!)
what went wrong with your original design?
Didn’t want to do any heavy architecture changes, and the way we were going to do it required a lot of cone launching/shooting, so although it would look cool, it would be inconsistent and hard to do.
Ah so it was the length that your arm reached? I’m curious to know how the drop down intake and the superstructure of your robot handled, as we are doing similar things in our design!
Edit: By your superstructure i mean how your CG was affected by it!
I’m not particularly sure what you mean, but I didn’t change anything to add the pneumatic piston. The CG is pretty low, though.
There are about 20 lbs of ballast I can add, and the battery is in the front of the robot and not the back, so for beta/final robot (not sure which one we’ll do), it should be a lot more centered once I move the battery and add ballast.
(i also flipped the piston)
How does the L3 cones work with the 1.5 dof bot?
My apologies, I meant did the drop down intake pickup cubes and cones effectively?
I made a mistake in the master sketch, so the intake had a bit too much compression, we did a temp fix, but we’re replacing the plates tomorrow with proper compression. We won’t be picking up ground cones for now.