[OCCRA]: Second Strain Relief Bolt (Again)

May I start by saying that our team currently has (and competed with) two strain relief bolts. While multiple bolts are not necessary to wire the robot, it makes the wiring much more simplistic and elegant. There are electrical components on both the front and rear of our robot, so running wires from the front of the robot, to the strain relief bolt in the back of the robot/box, and then to the front end of the box is very impractical. It wastes wire (in terms of cost and weight) and makes the wiring more complex. By having a strain relief on each side of the box, it helps to visualize which wires are coming from where on the robot; even labeled, it is difficult and unnecessarily time-consuming to hunt through all the wires on one bolt to find, and possibly remove/replace/rewire, one specific wire.

Our team had two strain relief bolts on our robot last year as well, and we asked if that was acceptable then, and it was deemed to be alright, as long as each bolt was an effective strain relief. Having wired robots both ways, forcing all wires to come together at one specific point is very inconvenient.

Besides all this, however, if any regulations regarding the use of multiple strain relief bolts were to be put in place this year, could we please be informed ahead of time? It would require the re-wiring of approximately half of our robot, a significant amount of work.


Two points:

  1. It is possible for any inspector to overlook any infraction to the rules and the next inspector catch it. The point is to be as legal as possible to the best of all of our skills and abilities.

  2. My comments regarding the strain relief are referenced to the fact that teams are NOT to modify the box or its contents. Our intent is to simply PROTECT the $$$ of parts located within. True it might make wiring easier but consider the team (not yours) that perforates the box beyond usage with no real regard to the safety of any component.

Is there are real problem with two strain relief bolts - not really. The strain relief is to protect YOUR operation so your robot is not dead in the middle of a match.

I for one would not prevent your team from passing inspection for having two strain reliefs. I just question why is it needed?

There are larger safety issues than the second strain relief.