pic: CAD by Cal (left) and electrics by Linus (right)

We work at Xerocraft, a hackerspace with a laser cutter. So a laser-cut plywood robot drive base makes a lot of sense for us.

It looks like a port to a Water-jet version in aluminum sheet would be a quick and logical next step.
Nice work!

The question is why do they need to make that next step?

To make it heavier and weaker?

Seriously we have a team that builds robots with interlocking laser cut plywood very similar to this one every year and they are strong and light.

Agreed, they already ran over the frame with a car. Don’t think you need to get any stronger than that.

If this design is durable enough to stand up to the rigors of a full FRC season, then there is no reason at all to move to aluminum.

I just assumed it would be a logical choice. Sorry if my assumption was incorrect. I just don’t see many, if any, teams using laser cut plywood, so the assumption was that it is not suitable for competition.

This design has a lot of things going for it, I just though it was a “prototype” to a final design. My bad.

I’ll admit that I was a little skeptical the first time I saw one of the local team’s machines but watching it and seeing how it held up made a believer out of me. One year they made it to CMP after attending two Regionals and taking a close look at it part way through CMP and it showed no signs of being fazed by all the use and action.

It is definitely durable enough to withstand heavy FRC use.

On 1771, we used laser cut baltic birch with interlocking tabs, exactly like this, since 2010, and never had a problem. 4509 has also used it for the past 2 years.

We found it to be lighter and stronger than aluminum. If we would take a huge hit, the wood might chip, but the frame would not bend or contort.