pic: 294 and 1114's minibot sharing solution

After being the final pick of 1771 and 1114 on Galileo, 1114 came to inspect our robot. We were equipped with a rail-style deployer, with a drawer track on a hinge and a crossbow-style launcher. This was bolted onto a cheesed platform, almost like a wireframe of a box on the back of our robot. They had a ramp, which much faster. Better was that they also had a second, prototype ramp, and the best part? Our minibot platform was at the perfect height to use it.

After a full systems check, we started removing our deployer as the first eliminations on our field began. By our first match, we had it completely off. While our driveteam and robots played, they, with the help of our pitcrew, mounted their spare deployer on a piece of plywood. We won our two quarterfinal matches, and mounted the plywood-deployer assembly onto the minibot platform using double stick tape and a bolt or two through the cheese. Before our first semifinal, we had the entire thing mounted, reattached to pneumatics, programmed(by our driver(me!)), including a fire-at-10 seconds routine, and tested.

Unfortunately, in our first semifinal the ramp was knocked loose of the pneumatic piston and flopped down early, which was a problem because we were playing defense. Then 1771 got confused over who was deploying and attempted to deploy over us on the same pole. Neither of our bots went up, and we lost. The next match, everything went perfectly, except when we deployed, the minibot flew back into our robot instead of going up the pole after going up the ramp. We found the final ramp section had been bent back, angling it away from the pole. We hadn’t checked the deployer thouroghly, and it either became bent when 1771 deployed over us or when we were playing defense with the deployer down, as it had become entangled in another robot at one point. We lost.

No happy endings, but I wanted to share something amazing that happened on Galileo. We didn’t build an entire robot in a day- but we did build a minibot ramp during elminations. Thanks to 1114 for picking us and for the deployer (it’s hanging on the wall), we didn’t win much, but I can’t think of many better ways to end my career as a FIRST student. Working with you was an experience unto itself.

PS. You looked at us funny when we suggested laying down the double-stick tape, but when we got back to our pits and undid the bolts, it took two people to get the thing off. Some chunks of wood were more attached to the tape than to the deployer and ripped out of the base, and are still stuck on our robot.

Working with 294 was probably the highlight of championship for us. It’s not often that we run into a team so similar to ourselves. You guys were motivated, focused, and not willing to let the standard paradigm of operating practices prevent you from achieving a goal. There’s no doubt in my mind that the minibot deployments would have been successful if not for the interference from our other partner.

We had designed that spare deployment for this exact situation, although I was personally skeptical that we could find a team both willing and capable of making it work in such a short period of time. You guys proved me wrong and reminded me that when two like minded and determined teams come together to accomplish a goal, they can definitely make it happen despite long odds.

It was a true pleasure working with you guys, and hopefully we can do it again under better circumstances in the future. You definitely made a friend in Team 1114.