This is where intake testing started with my team:
They set up a rig with a horizontal bar, spun it up with an impact driver, and just changed the wheels/roller type. A few things happened just after I snapped the photo… I had them back their rig up to a set of bumpers and moved them elsewhere to work on carpet. It is important that the testing happen on realistic surfaces.
Once we are back in our lab again, that intake shape will be assembled out of versaframe and polycarbonate and tested again. We like to power intakes with belts, with the motor placed as close to the intake pivot as possible. I think my team will want an intake that retracts into the robot, but we haven’t figured the geometry out just yet.
On wheels versus roller: I’d say wheels are great if you need to direct the game-piece somewhere (either to singulate or move into a frame/bumper opening) otherwise, rollers will do just fine. I think with retractable intakes, the best ones are usually pneumatic but I expect my team will use a motor because it’ll do the job and we don’t want the added weight/complexity. So we also make choices to minimize the weight of the system (roller, polycarb, belts, heavy stuff near pivot).
I’m also a fan of Everybot and would suggest you’re not doing your team a disservice by looking over build instructions and ideas from outside sources. My team spent lots of time examining climbers from 2013. And we’ll definitely look at the Everybot docs from 2022 (particularly intake) and 2020 (climber). We’ve built Everybot mechanisms both in-season and as off-season projects and it is a great way to improve mechanical skills.