pic: Design Challenge: Pits

I’d like to challenge anyone to design what you think is your dream pit. Mine isn’t shown as completed to not spoil what may come, but to get the ball rolling. However, I’ll post mine completed sometime soon :slight_smile:

*Must meet all pit requirements and must be feasible

Keep in mind that rookie teams may use these to help them design their pits.

I like this idea! I was acutally working on a form of pits/pit systems myself. Its pretty interesting If I can get around to making them one of these days I’ll certainly post it.

  • Andrew

The CAD of our pits

And our actual pits

We built our pits in the offseason for 2010-2011. They were donated by MK Extrusion and our biggest sponsor Centerline. We have every cabinet on Casters so it is really easy to move them. they fit perfectly in our trailer (with literally no room to spare on the sides).

If anyone has any questions i wil be happy to answer them

What is the flooring? Do you find it useful? Would you recommend it or something similar?

By the way I like the 772 sign creeping overtop

The flooring is the normal Rubber matting used in most machine shops. they connect together (but we zip tie them because they fall apart easily at competitions). Yes I HIGHLY recommend it. We were one of the first few teams that used matting in our pits back in 2004 or something (Atleast in Canada). Everyone else tries to use the foam mat’s which SUCK! these mat’s prevent slipping and any metal pieces drop in the circles and don’t get stuck in your shoes. It is kind of hard to see from the picture but we have a cut-out of the mat material for where the robot cart rolls into. We have been given ALOT of compliments on these pits, and our old pits (which are now trashed). We do take pride in them very much.

I like the plexi display case :stuck_out_tongue:

Aaron, does the space below the drawer have a sliding plexi door? I can’t exactly tell from the picture.

I’ll grab some pictures when I get the chance of our pits. As far as it goes, we’ve just got two student built diamond plate drawer things. We added a tent like structure of advertisements. I must say though, we tried adding “walls” at GKC, and I absolutely hated it. It makes the 10x10x10 just so much darker and much smaller than it really is.

The reason mine has walls is for the fan on the top; we stay cooler. To solve the “wall” issue, we shall use essentially shower curtain material as it can be easily folded up and will still let light through. However, we won’t have an issue with light; The model I made has 8 light sockets (for FIRST Bulbs :yikes: )

One thing to remember when designing your pit is that some venues may not be able to provide a 10’ x 10’ pit space. I believe that teams going to the Championship this year were warned in Bill’s Blog that this may have occurred in St. Louis. (I’m pretty sure that all of them ended up being 10’ square.)

Michigan’s events are usually 8x8. :frowning:

A roof is pointless. It’s unlikely to rain indoors, and it’s one more thing to break and fall on your heads. Besides, it’s likely going to result in insufficient lighting, and when the roof falls on your heads, the lights you install will fall too, catch fire and burn the pits down. The venue’s lights are free; use them instead.

I’m really a fan of GarageDeck coin-top flooring. Relatively inexpensive, light, easy to transport, easy to and assemble and disassemble in many sizes/configurations. We now take it almost everywhere we go. RaceDeck and others are similar.

now thats legit

Consider this a stupid question, but why bring a floor? (What does the provided floor lack?)

I’ve used a foam floor for the past 4 years or so. It makes standing and especially kneeling in the pit so much nicer. You spend a lot of time in the pit during the 3 days and your back and knees will thank you.

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Yea, we have Lexan in the grooves of the Extrusion. 2 pieces fit perfectly in the groove. There is an Unbelievable amount of storage in there. We have a vacuum in the back cabinet, compressor, battery station on the top of the left cabinet, all around white boards, and a small section of Cork board, Trophy case on the right front cabinet (also used to display Business plan, Design book, and video on the screen), we even have coat hooks for coats (when in Canada :wink: ) and for our Drive Team helmets.

The floor provides (as already stated) a nice way to kneel and is a little easier on your feet. Bu what we actually use to floor for, is as a safety precaution. The metal chips from deburring, drilling, filing, or what ever, will fall down in to the cutouts we have on our flooring. It also gives you grip so you wont fall if something spills in your pit, the liquid will go threw the circles and the rubber will give you more grip. lastly, if our programmers want, we can put the Ethernet cord under the mat, making no tripping hazards n our pits.

Building on Tristan’s post, the single greatest improvement, from a safety standpoint, is having sufficient lighting to work with tools in your pit. When you cover the pit, it makes it difficult for your team to work. While I have seen teams mount lighting on the structure, I must remind everyone, that there is ultimately the chance for a shock hazard. I have seen some teams that were asked to remove lighting by UL Safety people as being unsafe. While on the subject, many of these coverings do not provide sufficient headroom. Teams that have used fold-up tents have used everything from soup cans to custom built extensions to get them high enough to clear inspector’s heads and the robot on a work surface.
Of all the team pit designs, perhaps the one I like best belong to Apple Corps and Truck Town. They have lot’s of storage, seem to be easy to move and have an open top.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7208/7126590313_95c7bd9f45_z.jpg](http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7208/7126590313_2dca0ba9ba_o.jpg) http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8147/7126609739_460fe52827_z.jpg](http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8147/7126609739_4c8c06d238_o.jpg)

Click each image for a larger version.

Our crew chief called it the best looking pit at championship.

Keep in mind that there is a 10 foot ceiling :rolleyes: If you don’t make use of it then it’s your own fault. Besides, referring to earlier, I said our roof and walls are light plastic fabric and easy to remove. The lights are a nice option if we do choose to use them.

What else is going to break and fall on your head?

Max, what is the wall made of? At first I thought it was netting but it almost looks like plastic.

Just a question, but what makes the chance of shock from lights so possible and different from the tools and batteries?