HELLPP! El Toro Intake.

We are having the hardest time of angling and creating a working El Toro intake. I would like to know at what angle and length of PVC is optimal for ball pickup. We have been trying to perfect it since Week 3, but no chance.

Currently our setup for the intake is a 1/2" PVC wrapped in the Red Natural Rubber from McMaster Carr. We currently use a 10:1 Versaplanetary Gearbox on a BAG motor. We are willing to change the Gearbox but do not know which Gears are optimal for intake. On Team 148’s robot they used a Versplanetary Gearbox with BAG motor, but do not know what the gearing is for that. Also, the wrapping of the material confuses me because I’m not sure if it supposed to be wrapped tight or loose, stretched or not stretched. I was told to clean the intake once in a while, how exactly do I do that with? Soap :ahh:

Help with this would be GREATLY appreciated.

So our team went with the el Toro design with great success as you we started with pvc but that failed for us, so we switched to 1/2 aluminum round which we clamp on a fabricated mount, then that mount in connected to the shaft of a pg71 gear motor. at the end of the aluminum rod we have a banebot wheel attached to the end, with another bane bot wheels 9 inches from the top. the sticks extends exactly 20" off from the frame at its lowest point. and the sticks are actuated by a pg 27 gear motor. we have limit switches at both the top and bottom of the sticks to stop it at curtain points so that we don’t go down to far, or up to far. we have surgical tubing wrapped around the sticks for tension and even when they are hit and bent by another robot they still can pick up off the ground, we make about 4 spares for every competition but only changed them twice at each take 2 second to change you loosen the clam and take it out. There are numerous videos of our ball pick up linked to the blue alliance. just search team 716.
if there is anything else don’t hesitates we are very pleased with how our design came out

This worked for us on an initial eltorro design that fell with gravity and was able to pick up the ball.
Hockey tape or sport wrap as the base wrap around the PVC pipe. We liked the PVC pipe as it allowed for flex and took up some stress on our motor shaft.
Surgical tubing in a spiral arraignment (So it acts like a screw).
Base of torros were no higher than 10" off the ground
We didn’t angle them. They were straight and 20" apart. A slight angle outward is probably best as it reduces stress on the motor.
Need to have a hard stop so the el torros don’t fall lower than 45 degrees.
Our gearing is 45:1. Another team we know is at 20:1.
Bag motor.
Hope this helps.

If you still need help on Thursday…please stop by our pits at bedford and we can show you some ideas that can help you pick up the ball. (we will even bring some of our spare parts.)
FRC #5090

Hey, 4265 is looking into 20:1. Could I get some contact info (Or a #) for that team?

If you wait a minute I’ll have a mechanical guy give our current design specs.

It was frustrating for us because like the 5090 Team we had surgical tubing wrapped around PVC and With Hockey Tape. It was worse with that. I just want to the El Toro design on our robot, because there must be something we did wrong. Our next District is next week and we need to know specifics for making what we already have work. Thank you team 716 for the suggestion, but it is too far into the season to try to make a whole new intake. To add we have a 4" pneumatic piston attached to the intake to pull and drop when needed. To add, we are changing the 10:1 Versaplanetary to a 70:1 Gearbox.

We have had great success with our el torro intake system. We are using 20:1 versa planetary with a bag motor. I think 70:1 will be too slow. Our prototype system was direct drive CIM motors and they picked up great. The reason we went to planetary was to be able to manipulate the ball. With direct drive the weight of the ball would cause the CIMs to back drive if we tried to just hold the ball instead of completely bring the ball into our robot. I don’t have exact measurements right now, but I believe the length of our el toros are 17" wrapped in hockey tape and then wrapped with 1/4 surgical tubing. We also have a length of surgical tubing across the top connecting the el toros. I believe the spacing between our el toros at the top is around 22".

Our “El Toro” uses aluminum tube on 16:1 Banebots planetaries with RS-550 motors. It has proven to be extremely reliable and effective. The aluminum tubes are wrapped with rubber tape and capped with a rubber crutch tip.

My team does not use the el torro pickup however there are a few observations that I’ve made from successful and unsuccessful pickups.
The first thing to remember about this style of pickup is that it does not have very much lifting strength (or any, depending on the design). So your goal is to have the el torro sticks do as little vertical work as possible. This means that the base of the sticks should be as low on the robot as possible. The angle between the sticks and the ground (when looking from the side of the robot) should be as vertical as you can get it (it shouldn’t be any lower than 45 degrees as someone has already stated). If your front bumper is greater than 3 inches off the ground then you’re going to have a lot of trouble making this pickup work.
The next thing to work on is how far the sticks close together when they’re not picking up a ball. I’m assuming they’re spring loaded to put pressure on the ball as it travels into the robot (if not then they should be). You’re trying to balance the force exerted on the sides of the ball with the difficulty of the el torro sticks “wrapping” around the ball to pick it up. You don’t want so much angle and pressure that the sticks just spin on top of the ball and don’t pick it up, but you don’t want so little that the ball can slip out of your pickup.
Write down a systematic method for testing these things and execute it slowly and make observations for each test (someone taking video with a high-quality phone camera really helps with reviewing results when testing). Only make one change at a time and note the changes in results that you see. Watch videos of other pickups (148 has a really good one, 3847 has one with wheels) on youtube and see what you can learn.
Best of luck!

Our team (573) has been using the two spinning stick pickup successfully this year. The basics of our design are: (2) RS775 motors; (2) 5:1 VersaPlanetary gearboxes; (2) ~22 in long Sch 80 1/2" pipes with a tight wrap of the 1/16" by 1" latex rubber from McMaster; laying on top of the bumper (7.5 inches above the floor); with a 30 degree angle when extended; with a powered lift using the AM 42T pulleys, a 15mm Gates belt, and a PG188 gearmotor, and (3) wraps of surgical tubing to pull the stick together. We found the tension of the last item to be important when we helped team 3548 at the Southfield competition.

Wow, I saw your ball pick up at Waterford. Thank you for the specific angles, we’ll probably be utilizing this on our robot with the rubber from McMaster Carr. Thanks. :slight_smile: