We are being told here that we arent allowed to use our table top tools (belt sander, bandsaw, drill press). All teams are being told we have to go 2 blocks off site to use a machine shop. It is also specifically stated in the rules that we can use the tools I listed above. Has this happened at any other regionals?

Have you brought out the rule book?

Yes we have. We have shown them the rule book and they agree that the rule book says we can use them but they still say we cant. Can they have a rule change without a team update? It also appears to us that not all teams are notified. If the teams were notified we would have planned accordingly. Also teams at other regionals that were allowed to use these tools have an unfair advantage over all the teams here that cannot.

So they agree that it is in the rules but you can’t have them? There is something seriously wrong with that.

Good luck, just remember to remain cool.

Before anyone jumps the gun - who is telling you that, and how are they telling you that. Are they venue officials or FIRST officials?

In addition, I will point out that this is hardly unique. Two years ago at the Kettering district our row in the pits (and ONLY our row in the pits) was told we were not allowed to use any power tools because our circuit was not high enough capacity. At the same time, the pit rows in front and behind us were happing grinding / cutting / sawing away.

Rule 4.9.8, Section 4 of the administrative manual explicity allows the tools you mentioned, however, I’m guessing that the venue rules over ride - they have in the past. In which case, every team will be in the same situation. Unfortunately, that ANY venue rule (which is likely driven by safety or liability reasons) is going to override a FIRST rule. The real question is whether FIRST vetted the location and was told you could use the tools or not.

In short, getting excited isn’t going to help much. I wouldn’t like the situation either, but I think immediately contacting FIRST HQ or going through the official FIRST rep on site will be the quickest way to get it resolved. I wish you luck!

Tom is most likely correct. In all cases, FIRST has to bend to the venue-- and some don’t allow things of that nature to be operated within their premises. It’s unfortunate, but you simply have to adapt.

We were told we couldn’t use it by a FIRST official. She told us that she had been contacted by somebody high up in FIRST and that they were not being allowed. (shouldn’t this apply to every regional then?) We requested the name of who had told her this but she has yet to get that to us. The FIRST safety officials have also requested that the drill presses / band saws / sanders be removed from the venue.

Just out of curiosity, where is “here”?

1625 is in Milwaukee at the Wisconsin Regional this weekend.

Does your team have a vehicle at your disposal? Go out to Home Depot or any rental company and rent a small inverter generator. It will probably cost about $50 a day. Stick all the tools in the back of a van/SUV/car. If you need a part done just run out to your work-car and buzz it off. If venue or FIRST staff still take issue, park accross the street off the property and they have no governance over you.

Red tape is easy to work around given some creativity and scissors.

Venue rules, insurance rules, state rules, municipality rules, FIRST rules…

Adapt or die.

It’s not ideal, but it’s what happens. Do what you can with what you can when you can, and don’t be afraid to ask other teams for help if something like this puts a golem in your gears.

I remember when we went through this a couple of years ago. I guess we all thought that it was a moot point after the rules explicity allowed it.

If these truly are FIRST employees… I would be surprised. They should know the rules… especially after they are shown them…
99% of FIRST volunteers are by and large great to work with… BUT we have all run across one or two from time to time that seem to have a control issue. Don’t get me started…

I suspect someone is using FIRST as a reason…

If it is venue thing… so be it… but it would have been prudent to tell teams this before they got to the event…this is the same as warning teams that their pits are going from 10 X 10 to 8 X 8 or something…

Is this a new event? New volunteers? New Venue?

I hope things work out for you… the machine shop guys are usually pretty good from my experience with them…

Good luck on the field!!

Sorry to hear this and hope things get fixed for you guys. However does anyone think this will be happening at any other regionals?

doh! “MILWAUKEE TABLE TOP TOOLS” means the city of Milwaukee, not the Milwakee brand of table top tools.

I made the same mistake…
Read Milwaukee as a brand of tools…

double doh…


y’all weren’t the only ones :stuck_out_tongue:

This has to be a venue rule. Very weird. FIRST would have sent out a mass stating otherwise. As week 2 begins, can I please ask all of you to** PLEASE PLEASE** be aware of what you are doing in the pits. We had 2 near misses at Kettering in week 1. Teams that have those large arms are testing them out and some aren’t being aware of the surroundings. Remember safety glasses at ALL times in the pits.

This isn’t true FIRST wide at all. We are happily running our band saw and drill press in the pits and many teams at WPI have made use of both of these.

Is this the first year for the Wisconsin Regional at US Cellular Arena?

Nope, it’s been there every year. This has never been a rule before, including the three times 1625 has attended.