<G01> Question: in contact with the key.

Rule <G01> states:

The Robot must be in contact with its Key

I’m watching Suffield Shakedown and I see a lot of robots starting out autonomous with the entire robot on the key. Why are they doing this? We were just going to put the two back wheels on the key to be as close to the baskets as possible. Is that not allowed? How come I don’t see anyone else doing that?

I have the perception that you only need to touch the key in order for it to comply. Maybe they just don’t know you only need to touch it? :confused:

Q&A defines contact with the key (in relation to [R28], but it would also apply to [R01]):

Q. What is the definition of “in contact with its Key”? Is it one wheel touching the edge of the key, all wheels on the key, a portion of the bumper or frame overhanging the vertical projection of the key?
FRC1051 2012-01-20
A. There is no formal definition of “contact”, so the colloquial definition is valid here, “the act or state of touching” (from dictionary.com).

I was at the Nashua NH scrimmage today (full of official FIRST people) and every robot had to start with at least one wheel on the key. That’s really the only possible way to touch it, seeing as appendages aren’t allowed to extend before the match begins.

Zip ties or other dangling items from the frame would also work.

Are we going to see teams using ties as string was used in 2002 to get an advantage?

The refs would only allow the match to start if every robot had at least one wheel on the key. I’m not sure if that was just something to do with the scrimmage, but that’s what I would count on as being the minimum requirement. Dangling things might be considered a safety hazard.

How would they be considered a safety hazard? Additionally, if someone tried to make contact with the key with an item other than the wheel but wasn’t allowed, the refs were calling it incorrectly.

That may have just been the way the refs at the scrimmage were calling it and not how it’ll actually be in the real competitions. The Q&A seems to have been more lenient than the refs.

The rule is in contact. It does not specify what makes the contact, or how much force is needed to make contact. Any call where a robot is making contact but is ruled not to be should be brought to the Head Ref’s attention immediately.

(BTW: It’s not the first time the Suffield refs have been tougher than the rules. I remember hearing that they called a penalty that wasn’t a penalty from the Manual a few years back–Q&A later clarified that it wasn’t a penalty).

Is the key considered the flat surface on the carpet or is it a vertical plane that goes to infinity like the 84" reach rule like last year? And if it is an infinite vertical plane, that means you should just be able to have an part of your robot just sticking out over it to be considered safe, i.e. your bridge knocker.

It’s the HDPE plastic, as defined in Section 2.

So the safe zone is specifically the plastic on the field or is it the plane?

The key is defined as that elongated semicircle of plastic, so the former.

That’s not a vertical plane definition.

Remember that if any of your little dangling touch devices go outside the frame perimeter, they become appendages. Only one appendage is allowed outside the FP at any given time.

you just need one tire in contact with the key many people proboably had it in the center cause thats wer they sent there shooter up to