pic: FRC973 2011 prototype Frame


Welding is a resource our team had in short supply last year, so we our 2011 prototype completely eliminates welding. We also took efforts to utilize resources we have better to reduce machine and assembly time. Can’t say for sure how much time we’ve saved yet, but we’ve certainly shaved a great deal of time off of last years drivetrain.

Being able to run an aluminum bellypan was crucial to this (in our opinion), our waterjet sponsor int he past was unwilling to commit so much runtime (so we ran solid garolite in its place). They are now willing to do so, and it turned out great!

It’s rigidity is comparable to that of the welded frames we’ve made (by feel, no real testing done yet).

Pretty cool Adam!

If you can get a clearer picture of it at some point please upload it again.

I’m not totally sure, but it looks like rivets are holding on the belly pan in certain sections, and button head bolts are holding it on in others…any reason to that? I apologize if thats not what it is, pictures just a bit blurry.

Also, looks like you guys drilled a “standard” pattern of holes down the top of all the frame members. I’ve considered doing something like this for a while, but wanted to develop a manufacturing process that made it super simple (ie: jigs, dedicated drill press, etc.), what did you guys do to do that?


Looks great. How are the rails and ladder bars connected? Are they riveted or bolted together in addition to the common riveting to the belly pan?


I don’t remember when they first made that, but its a couple drill bushings in a fixture.

There is a plug in the end of each tube that is bolted into the perpendicular frame member.

We’ve been doing the hole pattern for a while now, the jig is primarily for odd jobs, nothing beats the manual mill for speed. Working quickly, its about 5 minutes per foot, and that’s with center drilling.

The buttonheads are only there pending arrival of longer rivets.

More pictures will be up after assembly.

Hey just curious did yall use the concept on your 2011 bot?

Yup, except no intake and no internal crossmember.

Worked great, was a real light frame that was real fast to make.


Looks like a great solid chassis that’s really easy to make. I know you’re going to have to eventually teach me a bit of WCD drives since I have never actually made one with 1647. However, after looking at multiple representations I have a clear idea of how they work.

If possible, I would love a drawing of the entire drive train assembly so I could really inspect the DT as much as possible before next year.