pic: 3322 First Design Iteration / Practise Bot

It’s interesting strategically, and we had many discussions about it. One bonus is that you can tweak your gear receiver without affecting your gear placer. The bigger point is that we think it’ll skim time off our cycles because of the driving path. If you’re one-sided, the best choice is to do a stop-and-go near the lift, which is very susceptible to defense. In this case, you do a sharp turn to line up with the nearest lift, or not so sharp and go to an alternative lift (altogether, should hold up better under defense).

It’s funny, I feel like up to this point last season, we accomplished a similar amount of work. But we tried to do too much, and so we were nowhere. I’m feeling good about this year. Don’t get me wrong, we’re not nearly finished, so many tweaks to make and still a whole comp bot to build, but I’m just happy to have time for tweaking, testing, and practising.

As a member of the controls team on 3322, I am extremely excited to have a bot to test with at this point in the season. Gives us plenty of time to test automating driver actions.

So why makes this design more efficient than a “cereal box” type of gear manipulator where the gear can be “stabbed” by the spring and barb and pulled up by the pilot?

Just playing devil’s advocate here

You load from one side and drop off from the other side. As others have said in this thread, this makes you less susceptible to defense, as you don’t have to stop and turn around to place your gear after running it across the field.

You don’t have to wait for the human player to finish fishing the gear out before your robot drives away. This shaves a few seconds per cycle, which really adds up.

The low angle of the human load collecting mechanism also makes the loading faster and more reliable than other mechanisms.

A lot of people still knee deep in their build are really mad at you/themselves.

Nice work.

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I didn’t realize how incredible of a design/strategy this is at first. You guys will have some of the most practiced drivers out there, which should do far more for you than any gear ground pickup, actuated peg drop, or moving gear placer that have been touted as “completely necessary” for a gear placing strategy here on CD. And… you skipped the fuel completely, which means (assuming better alliances will be able to get all 4 rotors going) you will likely be playing a little defense come eliminations, but your drivers will be up for the job.

Actually, we don’t release the gear onto the peg. “A few seconds” is a gross exaggeration. Our testing suggested that, if your pilot is ready, you save a fraction of a second at most. And our pilot will be ready.

This is a big question. Given the depth/quality of district events, I don’t anticipate any district elimination alliances consistently getting all four rotors going. Because if they can, opposing alliances will play just enough defense that they can’t.

This was our line of thinking as well. Cycle time is going to be king in this game. We wanted the drivers to have to turn around as little as possible to shave time off our cycle and to make it harder to defend against. We also wanted our intake to be as robust as possible so that it would accept gears no matter how the human player puts it down the chute or what sits between us and the chute. So following the natural telemetry of the chute seemed like a no brainer when designing our mechanisms.

I completely agree about feeling like building within our means was the right choice to go with. Our practice robot is about 90% done and comp bot is about 40% done and I don’t think we have ever been this on schedule before.

Kudos for the foresight to recognize the potential power of extra drive time vs. going after other objectives. This solution probably has the most “Bang for the Buck”, and finishing early to get the stick time will make it incredibly effective.

That’s of course assuming your pilot is the one in the airship. With just two people up there, you can’t always guarantee that. But especially in Michigan where there are so many talented teams that’s probably less of an issue.

Hmm that may be true, but I can’t really see how this design allows for the robot to deposit the gear on the spring and drive away without the pilot fishing it out…am I missing something?

Yes, you’re correct. The pilot has to lift the gear out of the robot before the robot can drive away. We’re confident that whatever time you could save by dropping it off without the pilot isn’t worth the additional complexity.

Ok our team designed a passive gear deliverer system too, we are testing in a few days at a practice field…hopefully you are right about the less hassle! Do you think having a drivetrain that allows linear strafing would also save time when depositing?

Depends. Have you done linear strafing in the past? Are your drivers familiar with it? It isn’t going to help much if your drivers aren’t used to it, especially considering that opposing robots can push you sideways much more easily.

Edit: Also, your drivetrain should probably have been decided upon and built by this point. If it has not, take your kitbot and build a tank drive. Week 4 is not the time to make these sorts of decisions. Source: my team did mecanum last year, and had no idea what we were doing. If you do decide to go this path, send me a PM, because there’s a few things you’ll need to know.

I suppose it could. We’ve had good results with our tank drive by turning right before getting to the airship and approaching the peg head on. As far as drivetrain decision making, the cycles to and from the peg are probably more important than placing - you need to be very fast maneuverable, and ready to deal with pushing.