New Product Hype for 2020

Spark Maxes are out of stock. Neos are out of stock. Limelights are out of stock…

Which causes me to reflect on what possible improvements our favorite suppliers will be giving us this year. New gearboxes that optimize the Neo? New brushless motors and controllers? Improved vision? More all-in-one solutions, like the Greyt intake and elevator? Will it be gimmicky and limited in use (hello, Rhinotrack), or will it be a game-changer, like Versa stock and the AM14U were?

It’s too late in the design process for companies to get ideas from the community for new products, but it’s the perfect time for me to get itchy about whether we should stock up on supplies now, or wait for the new-and-improved. What are y’all looking forward to?




an option… or two :thinking:




My #1 most anticipated item is the Rev hex encoder. The ability to have an encoder anywhere we want will be extremely useful.

Also, a small BLDC motor along the lines of the BAG would be pretty cool. I don’t care which company makes it, I just hope it can exist.

Edit: And one more: A stripped down BLDC motor controller for under $60. Again, I’m perfectly capable of ordering from either Rev or Vex on this.


I am hoping for cheaper shipping options from companies other than AndyMark, REV, Ozzy Boards, and Swyft (Swyft is the best because shipping is ridiculously cheap and gets here in a couple days.

Shipping a nickel sized item to NJ costs:

-$13.91 from VEX
-$16.93 from WCP
-$19.92 from Robot Space (from Michigan)
-$20.73 from CTRE (from Michigan)

I know it would probably be more expensive to offer both UPS and USPS, but a lot of times we order parts in a bunch of orders so we end up racking up a lot of costs.


Swyft is rocking it. I have had nothing but positives from that company, including shipping costs and time.

The Thrifty Bot will always make every effort to fit your order into a small flat rate box. I’ve shipped 80 bearings for under $8.00. I’ve not had to use larger than a medium box, so US shipping will always be under $15 (until larger items find their way into the store.) I’ll also refund the shipping cost difference if the volume calculator thought it needed a medium box but everything actually fits into a small box.

It’s never too late :slight_smile: I’ve added items specifically from requests made by individuals on Chief. Post em up and I can at least get it on the list o’ stuff.



When the new site launches this week we’ll have USPS available. We basically charge our account rate, FedEx ground rates have been going up lately as well.

New site is available here to view.


According to their website, “Limelight 2 will be back in stock towards the end of October”.

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I can’t wait to find an area on the bot to give these a test too. It looks as though they should be in stock within the week. According to their website at least.


We just bought 8 Neo Motors Last week… Did we order too early? Should have we waited 3 weeks for a new better version???

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Yes. It’s always best to wait until Frank tells us what motors are going to be legal for the season. For reference, that happened on a Nov 14 blog post last year - so hopefully we’re just ~2 weeks out from finding out this year!

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As a caveat, I’d be shocked if NEO motors weren’t legal for the 2020 season. Hundreds of teams have bought into them and they’re great.

Don’t worry too much over this purchase @macman828 but as Jon said, usually at this late point in the year it’s best to wait and see on large purchases. Great time to stock up on commonly used small parts though.

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Agreed. But I’d hate to buy a bunch of NEO’s now, only to find out in a week that there’s a better option available :slight_smile: I don’t have any knowledge of a better option, nor any information on what will and will not be a legal motor… but I don’t like making purchases without that information!


The NEOs are a pretty safe purchase; they’re almost certainly going to be legal and they’re also almost certainly not going to change much, if at all (motor designs are pretty stable).

I’d weight getting access to/experience with the product earlier over whatever narrow performance gains might be offered by new products on the market, tbh.


It’s a moot point at the moment, since they aren’t in stock right now. I was all ready to buy them last week…

I guess we have an advantage there… my team used them last year :slight_smile:

We did too, they’re still attached to the robot. Could use more

I’m anticipating something new in vision systems. Limelights have been out of stock since April, which suggests a major retooling might be in progress. And the current FTC game promotes the use of Tensor Flow for target identification. Would be highly unusual for FTC to feature a technology that was more advanced than its FRC counterpart. Just sayin’…