Hatch panels getting stuck in loading station

I’ve watched a handful of matches yesterday and today, and it seems that panels are regularly getting stuck in this position. Can anyone at an event confirm? What, if anything, can human players do to dislodge the panels?


@Jared_Russell what event(s) are you seeing this sticking at?

I’ve seen this happen multiple times at Orange County, and at least once in Montreal.

I think I saw one team at a week 0 that instead of putting the hatch panels in the opening and letting go, actually lifted them up higher after putting it in the opening before letting go. That gave it a little more speed/momentum at the bottom. I think they were doing that to potentially help with this issue. That process was also deemed legal on the Q&A (And subsequently TU15).


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Happened at the official Week 0 event in NH many times.

Has anyone tried sticking another hatch panel in and seeing what it does?

Yes, and FIRST engineering was on-site at Week Zero working on the loading stations and planning how to fix it, which led to the drawing updates in Team Update 13.

Can somebody confirm why this happens? Is it due to a robot hitting it to the side or is it something to do with how the human player drops it?

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When we’ve encountered this on our home field it’s usually the result of the brushes getting bent back. Those bristles are pretty stiff.

This was happening very frequently at the official week zero event. Seemed the best way to get around it was to enter the hatch panels as high as possible and let them drop with enough speed. If they don’t have the momentum they will bounce in place at the bottom and get stuck as shown.

At Granite State we have a new problem…hatch panels bouncing OUT of the loading station!

Does bumping the wall with the robot fix the issue? That is what I would believe a temporary fix would be if it were to happen in a match.

Any picture or video of this yet?

I’m ok with this. Would much rather grab the from the floor… But since that’s not how it’s designed to operate I can see how others would find this a problem.

We experienced this problem at the Kettering Week 0 event, though it might have just been their field. When we dropped them normally sometimes they would get stuck, when we forcefully dropped them they would fall out. If someone has a consistent technique a video would be much appreciated!

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Also saw this at Gibraltar today (via Twitch-so not certain it was exactly the same problem)

This just happened in one of our matches at the Palmetto regional. To fix this we dropped another panel in. This could prove problematic for some teams though as one hatch panel may become stuck behind the other and make the center hole of the hatch inaccessible for some teams.

This wouldn’t actually bother our robot, since our hatch mechanism could still punch into the center hole and the robot itself could drag the hatch sideways until it could be removed. But it would slow down that cycle considerably, so certainly not a desirable outcome.

Not a problem to me! :wink:

I’m also interested in any videos of this… I definitely don’t want to show my human player how to do this… I promise.


Is there any reason you couldn’t crank this up to like 20 degrees? That seems like an easy drop-in fix that FIRST could ship out.