pic: Suitcase Bot



This is a render of our “Suitcase Bot.” We plan on using it for our mentor workshop in China in late December. The goal is to have a drivebase that is FRC sized and has all the basic elements of the control system but can also have a small footprint for travel. We may bring a partial bumper to show bumper construction. We’ll use it as a wide, 4 wheel tank drive and may demo with mecanum wheels if time permits. We’ll add a gyro, light sensors, something to drive a pot., etc. It uses mini CIMs and standard Toughbox Nano dirve parts.

That’s awesome!

Looks like a bit of a pain to carry though.

Maybe you could integrate a detachable handle and wheels so it can be rolled like a suitcase?

Looks like it’s already got a handle, so I dunno how much of a hassle it would be to carry. Given that it’s only a drive base, and I’m guessing it travels sans-battery, it’d only weight 20-30lbs. Somewhat carryable, but probably hurts to carry by just that aluminum tubing!

I haven’t looked around yet, but I was hoping to find a suitcase with wheels I can pack it in. I’d pack the spare parts and tools with it also.

Just a top, making the handle out of round tubing makes things a lot more comfortable to carry.

Also, keep in mind that this thing will have to go through airport security, so you might want to consider mailing it to your destination rather than bringing it on the plane.

Very cool, but I’m actually more interested in the details of the Mentor Workshop in China. Do you know how many teams will be represented? Which teams? We have several teams from China coming to TX regionals but haven’t heard much about how they are being supported.

From the “Registration 2014” thread

Just a suggestion…you MIGHT want to check that if flying :smiley:

You’d get quite a few looks from the TSA

And be careful when trying to ship batteries. We were on an alliance with a Brazilian team, who was not allowed to ship their batteries to the USA in any way. Luckily 148 was very generous and lent them enough for the weekend.

How much does the bot weigh? My experience is that FRC robots are generally quite heavy.

The workshop in China sounds really cool. You’ll have to let us all know how it goes.

And I’m really sorry but I find humour in the thought of putting a FRC robot in a suitcase.:slight_smile:

I just looked at the pic again. So you can swap out the two different types of wheels? That is AWESOME.

Reminds me of a trip I took. We were on a charter bus for 22 hours, and there were no power outlets on the bus full of teenaged kids.

Boy was I the hero when I pulled a battery and power inverter out of my suitcase 2/3 of the way there, after everyone’s phones had died :stuck_out_tongue:

Best of luck to you guys. We are competing with some of the teams from China as well. In addition, there were a few teams and representatives at the Asia Pacific Invitational this summer in Australia. If we can help out in anyway, let us know.

We shipped FTC robots and parts over this summer for the Asia Pacific Invitational. We specifically made a wood crate for one FTC Robot and packed the crate with expanding foam to match the robot. We also took components over in a large aluminum sided suitcase that was packed with the expanding foam around the parts. We checked the crate but made it so that it could be opened to be examined. We included zipties to be used to close the crate back up after inspection by security.

Whenever I go on trips, I pack my AGM battery, a boost converter, my laptop, and my broken iPod with a magnet on it’s back. When it’s dark, I just pull out the iPod, stick it to the bus’s steel ceiling and turn it on to full brightness! I then have tons of light. Meanwhile, I can surf the inet on my computer by tethering my phone! I am the Savvy Traveler! :smiley:

I am pretty sure that everyone eyed you with envy and the want to jack the battery and inverter from you when not looking! The sad thing is that this is no use on a plane.

Is it possible to apply for a TSA permit/license/background check or something else to allow a robot like this aboard a plane?

I checked the TSA list of special items and for some weird reason Robots did not come up. I guess a robot isn’t special.

You could buy your own plane.

Also, I just thought of something nobody has talked about:

Customs

I don’t have a list of the teams that will be there, but I’d expect most of the China teams that have registered already or started the registration process.

We talked last week about coming to Hub City as a third regional to help support the China teams. It gets a bit tricky, because the team is only allowed two out of state trips a year (champs is an exception.) We talked about having each student only go to 2 of the 3 regionals - so we’d need 2 drive teams. I don’t know if that is going to work. Regardless, we’ll probably have 2 or 3 mentors make the trip to help support the China teams if 525 can’t compete there.

Tom, I’m always impressed by your renders and super excited to get to attend a regional with you guys again this year. We here at Team Titanium wish you all safe travels. I’d be hard pressed to think of a better ambassador for FIRST.

Noticed that 4830 recently joined the Central Illinois regional. We’ve got a couple of students brushing up on their Mandarin in anticipation.

I believe the workshop will be at 4830’s school. They’ll need to ship their a few days early in order to get it to Central Illinois on time.

I don’t know… articulating frames weren’t legal last year.

We’re going to recommend that they build the kit bot. We’ll make special T-shirts for the workshop and we joked about having “Build the kit bot” translated to Chinese and put on the back of the shirts. (We will spend some time going over the robot manual from last year - I’ll be sure to point out R02.)

The two halves will be useful - since the frames were welded there will be a bit of distortion. We can oversize one set of holes to get the two sides aligned nicely when we bolt them together.

We’ll point out other stuff that is unique to the suitcase bot and wouldn’t be done in competition - like the bumpers are only 1" off the ground and the bumper corners aren’t ideal.