More Finesse as a Driver

We have mecanum wheels and one motor per wheel, 4 wheels. The throttle and strafing is the same stick and turning the robot is the other stick.

842 was having similar troubles. Maybe they will chime in

I would recommend scaling down the default mecanum turn rate in the code. I found that multiplying the rotation value by 0.4 worked for us. Anything more had us accidentally throwing totes. It increases your robot’s stability by a lot without reducing your overall mobility. Also, if you don’t use field-oriented drive, it will help a lot to simplify driving so you can better focus on being precise.

Are we the same team? :stuck_out_tongue:

In all seriousness, we had our programmer do exactly this after the Center Line quarterfinals, where turning from the feeder station would fling totes everywhere, and because of this change, during Windsor (our next event), the only times we lost a stack while driving was if the stack was already incredibly unstable.

For reference, for chassis driving we are using Logitech F310 game pads. Our driver found it much easier to drive mecanum than the Attack 3D Pro, because the twist axis would give unintended values when trying to simply drive forward or strafe.

The two current games I have for fine motor control both are available on steam and don’t break the bank too much.

  1. Geometry Wars 3D
  2. Waves
    Things you can do with the xbox controller. Buy or print control freaks/joystick extensions for a controller. It feels weird at first but the longer the thumb stick the more control you have over it.

I’ve been thinking of buying control freaks for my Xbox at home. Is it against FIRST rules to attach them to a driver’s station controller?

Not much regulation on what can be put on the driver station.
Question 155
Q. Do motors that are connected with the Operator console need to follow all rules that apply to motors mounted on the robot?
FRC1339 on 2015-01-13 | 3 Followers
A. No, there are no rules that explicitly legislate motors used in the OPERATOR CONSOLE, however please consider T1 and make sure that the implementation doesn’t pose risk to people.

This was prompted in response to wondering if you could add kinetic feedback to driver station controllers through motors.

So, to make it clear, I can? Thanks! :smiley: I think you may have solved my problem once and for all. I’ll also try those two games.

Have a slow gearing of your robot. I was a very aggressive driver last year and so this year came as a big change. I think the greatest thing I learned is “Drive slower to go faster.” I tried going as fast as I can and i would dump stacks or make stupid mistakes. Practice, Practice, Practice! We had the opportunity to go to three district events this year and then district championships. As i got more practice things got much easier. The first two events I was 50-75% on our stacks. In the third It went well other than dropping two stacks of 6 in the same match:( In PNW championship we were 100% dropping no stacks. (This is excluding the match where a few zip ties were cut and our tower fell not letting us be able to stack)

I would also say to develop a routine. If you watch our playoff matches I did almost the same exact movements every match. This helps me to keep my nerves down and know the speed I have to go and have confidence that i do not have to rush. Since this years game is generally the same thing every match for a team, building a routine of the movements that you make can help with finesse a lot!

Here’s a good example:

In my opinion, it usually comes down to the preference of the driver. If you have access to joysticks, I would try them. But as said earlier, it does come down to practice.

There is no magic wand that will make you a better driver for this type of game - there are plenty of teams with gamepads running up high scores. Here are some tips:

Cap your max speed (note - not necessarily your acceleration!). There are a couple of ways to try this, including software (requires encoders) or hardware (remove 2 CIMs). The methodology is completely dependent on your robot however - removing 2 CIMs may make it very difficult for your robot to turn. Our best driver is comfortable at only 6-7ft/s, and when we ‘sneak’ it up on him he’s noticeably worse. If you’re only a single-speed bot, have a button which puts a software cap on the speed. One speed is for game piece interaction, the other speed is for short bursts of sprints.

In a typical year, use an active intake, or a more forgiving intake. Every year, your team should have an active intake or TONS OF PRACTICE. If you have neither, lower your expectations. This year, however, seems to require nothing but an active intake for the most successful teams. My team tried the practice route (had a driving robot early week 5) and it just hasn’t panned out. Active intakes aren’t easy to do this year since the game pieces are square and fairly rigid. Therefore the active intake must conform to the game piece rather than vice-versa. 2056’s double-passive-articulating active-roller intake seems to have the best combination of compactness, effectiveness and versatility.

Be proactive in going over match flows with the coach, move-for-move before a match starts. Learn the situations you’ll get into and how to deal with them. This can be done via practice or via finding other successful robots similar to yours and watching all of the video you can find.

I am the same way, I didn’t drive last year but I did during all the offseason events. I was much better at playing defense and using an open and bigger field. I also loved hitting other robots, not meaning to hurt them but just playing regular defense.

I started the year driving at the Greater Pittsburgh regional, I was taken off from driveteam after messing up to much. I feel that this years game is completely different than prior years. I just have the skill set for these precise lineups and carefully maneuvering.
Luckily, I was immediately put on the pit crew so I still have an crucial role for the team.