What part does your team use a lot. Parts that you never have enough of? Parts that seem to be always out of stock during the FIRST season. My team is brainstorming ways to fund our team during the season by manufacturing two or three parts to sell to other teams. Any Ideas? I was thinking Andy Mark 2.5" bearing block…
What AM 2.5" bearing block are you referring to?
Slip of the finger? Did you mean banebots bearing block?
Yeah, thats what I meant. Anyway, what other parts does your team use a lot during the build season?
I’ve never been on a team that didn’t have a shortage on ball bearings.
Same here. We have probably 15 pounds of bearings, yet every year we order more, since the ones we have are often not the type we’re using, or not enough.
FR8-ZZ and FR6-ZZ are very commonly used. However, it seems you’re looking to manufacture parts rather than resell parts.
Selling a part someone else already makes is probably a losing proposition.
It is not likely that you, with no volume and no established customer base, can undercut the pricing of someone like Banebots or Andymark. That Banebots part is probably also made in China for $2 a pop.
If you sold some variant of an existing part that was improved or somehow desirable over the original that might work. Best to try and find a niche that is currently desirable and untapped.
I think you will find it is a ton of work to even attempt to do this. You almost certainly would be looking at starting for the 2013 FRC season as it would be nearly impossible to get off the ground in the next 8 weeks. You also need to be very careful that you can meet FIRST’s definition of VENDOR.
I wouldn’t say it’s a part, but our 7/16th wrenches are the things we value the most. Why? Because they’re what we use most often, and always seem to disappear whenever we need them. We’ve since covered every one in fluorescent colored duct tape, yet they still sometimes evade our sight. :rolleyes:
Pool Noodles. Most teams wait until a week or two before Ship Date (well, I guess now ‘Bag Date’) to try to get them for bumpers, and by then they’re out of stock at most places. Two years ago, we needed families to donate noodles to our team since the ones we had to order wouldn’t get in in time. Last year though, we bought a huge container full, which should give us enough for this coming season as well. ::rtm::
Same for us. I joked last year that we should mount a 7/16" wrench on a plaque for each graduating senior and have it engraved with their name and the number of years on the team.
Well, I don’t know if this should be included, but for the past few years (minus 2010), game pieces have been one of the toughest things to find, 2009, by far, being the worst.
Parts we use a lot: 1/4-20 nuts and bolts, Lexan, Freshmen, l-angle
Parts we never have enough of: Use-able bearings, Allen wrench sets, Freshmen, Rivet guns, straight shafts, correct lathe tools
If you could manufacture freshmen, you would be millionaires!
This is a great idea, and could possibly make you decent money if done correctly. Good luck to you!
This might not count as a “most used part” but its still interesting.
At our kickoff this past January, AndyMark gave our team a 12v solenoid, thrown in with the other 24v solenoids that we used. We noticed this problem later when testing pneumatics, and we had to get AndyMark to change their website description of the solenoids they sold.
I would suggest finding sponsors instead of trying to sell things. There are several great ways of finding sponsors.
I also have to point to our cast on sustainability.
My biggest suggestion to you, go to your local Chamber of Commerce and see if they can connect you with businesses in your area. $200 from 10 places is better than $2000 from one if it is sustainable.
I’ll butt out now.
Must be hard to fund 4 regionals eh?
At least then you’d know where to find a wrench when you needed it. :yikes: