If you could change one thing....

Well the deadline has come and gone, the robots are packed and shipped and everybody is catching their collective breaths and waiting to go to their respsective regionals.
So what is the one thing you would have liked to have done differently this past build season?

I personally would have preffered to have gotten all the brainstorming and design work out of the way atleast a week earlier then it was finished. Even thought I didn’t like how long it took though, I’m glad we thought the design through mostly without jumping headlong into it.

I SO WISH that we could have made a different type of grabbing device. our grabber lets the tetra swing too much. so you have to let the robot sit for a second to let the tetra to stop swinging.

Not tried to save money on a few components by waiting to see if better/free source became available. Most notably, with the aluminum stock that the robot was built with. We really lost a week of build because of that.

i would eliminate the second joint in the arm, make it telescoping, we are having so much trouble with breaking window motors its rediculous.

It was somewhere about midway through (I could look it up if I were really motivated)…

…see, 1293 meets Tuesday, Thursday, and all day Saturday. Saturday, there was a bunch of ice on the roads, cancelling practice. Then Tuesday, we didn’t get anything done, since our mentor who is responsible for a slew of mind-blowing things on our robot had a work emergency. Then finally, Thursday night with about half an hour left, we finally got a bunch of things to do.

So yeah, we functionally lost a week.

And I wish I could’ve changed that.

While for me this relates more to the chairman’s award, but it could relate to any team for robots I’d say the thing I wish I’d have changed was spent just a bit more time in the lab/classroom brainstorming in the beginning, and THEN had a good strong work schedule instead of a lot of stuff that was done closer to the end.

True, individually and as a team there may still have been rush at the end, but I feel like the editting and little things near the end would have been more need specific and having a workable whatever earlier would have been a teensy bit less stressful than those awesomely fun late night moments.

Then again, I wouldn’t give those for anything, so procrastination on any level is a win-lose situation :slight_smile:

  • Genia

I’m extremely happy with how our actual robot came out, mechanically, but there are some general problems that we had in the electrical/programming side, and other ways.

First, we lost about half of a week due to midterms right after kickoff, and secondly, I wish we had gotten the robot done a little earlier so as to have more time to work on autonomous. Pretty good build season though, especially compared to last year, where tons of things went wrong.

I want a stronger drive train. And more money.

I would have loved to make our arm gripper a bit better, We got the height, but our forklift arm could be better designed

One of our main engineers had to go to Austrilia halfway through build, putting a lot more stress on the others. I wish I could change that.

All in all it was a pretty good build season, because the only other thing I can think of off the top of my head is I wish we could have gotten the side plates water jet cut instead of laser cut, because then we could have used our cool hammerhead designs.

well we had a flood half-way through the build season…not good. we had to transfer all our stuff into a closet, then back into the basement…lost a week and a half :ahh:

Can’t think of just one thing that would have helped big time. As with all complex problems there are lots of solutions. I guess that pushing harder sooner might have helped. And our school instructor had no idea of the time commitment, and so we moved into our pottery studio at home. We had some expected machining help fall way short in terms of time and accuracy. But we also found some new shops willing to donate work, water jetting saved our bot. And our long distance mentor, really came through big time this year. Thanks so much, Larken!!!
Still have some things to plan for and challenges to solve at the Buckeye Regional.

I would not change anything on our robot; I would have liked to see more student involvement. It gets disappointing some nights when few kids show up.

I agree totally with Quatitos. We spent alomst 2 weeks just brainstorming through the many, many ideas we had. Other than that, everything was ok. :]

We had a GREAT season. Best robot I’ve ever had the pleasure of working on. Most student involvement of ANY year I’ve been in FIRST. GREAT group of kids – incredible group dynamic. Plenty of support from “home” and “significant other” (even when I’m grumpy and stressed) which makes the build WAY more fun. We were able to help several of our “friend” teams, which is nice. We helped out some rookie teams, which was VERY fulfilling.

Overall, we just grew as individuals, and as a team. I just can’t stop myself from babbling about how happy I am. Everything just started falling into place. This season is definitely a high note for me.

Many Kudos to Clarkson Junior, former X-Cat, and team leader extrordinaire Adrienne Emerson for running such a tight ship. Ader - you’re WAY better at this than I was.

Let’s hope the “good feelings” stay with us through regionals… :wink:

knocks on wood

oh wow i’m sorry… floods are not cool…

if i could change anything… i wish i hadn’t spent so much time practing to be driver (which i didnt make btw…:() and instead spent more time designing and building the actual robot. There is a lot about robot building i dont know, and i regret really missing out on a wonderful opportunity to learn a lot.

but other than that, i am so pleased with how everything turned out. we got the chairman’s award submission finished early and we even had the luxury of sort of taking our time with it (better than last year… we literally pieced together the whole thing in 7 hours at my house about 3 days before it was due… not cool), overall, the Website has improved exponentially, Roccobot 2k5 looks awesome… (sorry we still haven’t posted a finished product… be patient, its coming soon, i promise! :)) and we just got a lot done!

:slight_smile: I guess instead of focusing on the stuff we wish we could have changed, we should focus on all of the wonderful stuff we accomplished instead! instead of saying “ugh, i wish this hadnt broken” or “why did the weather have to go funky like that and mess us up”, why not say “wow! i cant believe that even though that really important part broke, we still managed to fix it!” or "dispite that horrible weather we’ve been having, we managed to actually finish the robot in due time! and even if things look their gloomies and their worst, and everything went wrong, you can at least say, “hey, at least we tried, and we learned a lot from this experience!”

Well I think I would have liked to have everything mesh better the gearboxes at best were jerry rigged only thing holding the shafts in was the setscrew on the gear which was held in by the spacers between bearings and the gear. Plus I think we decided the 1/2" steel rod that rotates for our arm is bent a little. It didn’t shear through the aluminum 4"x4" tube? Well thats it.

I’d skip getting pneumonia and spending 12 days of last two weeks of the build in the hospital. Kind of shot a big hole in the build schedule.

In a few instances, there were dicisions made as to the design of my team’s robot that were not carefully considered. The best features seem to be the ones whose design was vehemently discussed between students and between mentors. On the other hand, the parts that needed work or failed were most often ones that were not aggressively debated.
I think much grief with design problems could have been avoided by working with more people reviewing ideas and by paying attention to detail.