Pre-match Checklist

How many teams use a pre-match checklist before each round?

We use a checklist, it varies from year to year but, it has the basics on it.

We put one on the robot this year, too bad it’s on the back where you can’t see it after setting the robot in place! We’ll keep working on it though.

we use one but its basicly plug this in tightin that, stuff like that

If you made a list of Ten Essential Items for robotics competitions, the pre-flight checklist would be in #2 – right after “wire ties.” I don’t even want to think of the number of times I’ve seen a robot die in a match from something that should have been included on a checklist.

Team 1983 is using a checklist for the first time this year. After many different drafts, we now have a 5-stage checklist outlining activities up to 30 minutes prior to a match. It has also been tested in extremely short turn around situations, and can be effectively completed in approximately 5 minutes. The checklist should be up on our website very soon. (our webmaster is quickly getting sick of my nagging) The items include everything from vaccuuming, and tightening wires, to powering up to charge the pneumatics and get the claw and lift set just right.

The checklist has proved extremely helpful this year. We have a pretty complicated robot that needs to be forced into it’s starting configuration (pictures available on our website as well). It was key in being consistent and competitive at the competitions this year.

Team 48 had used one for several year but got away from it because of the reduced time between matches (when FIRST went from 2v2 to 3v3). However, I know it can be a very useful tool, so we implemented one just last week at Buckeye. It runs through checks on a variety of sub-systems, chain tensions, belt tensions, controls, batteries, etc.

Through its use on Saturday, our pit crew caught a broken tread belt that hadn’t completely seperated, and we were able to quickly change it before the next match.

Unfortunately 810 is one of those teams who is known for dying mid-match due to a careless errors. Last year, we missed approx 4-5 rounds because of mistakes. In the past, we have had some less than competent leaders, and have never had a pre-flight check list, but as the new team leader, I want to change that.

If you’re not doing it, you need to be…
and you should do what 1983 is doing and have them for different t-minus intervals.
as has been said, and especially at your first regional, you will make stupid mistakes that will cost you matches (hopefully only practice matches). when it comes time for alliance selections, captains will be looking for robots with reliable performances. obviously this is impossible if you forget to turn your bot on half the time, and leave your pressure vent open the other half.

We don’t have an official list, but I do run through many things myself before the robot goes on the field. In no particular order:

Pneumatics pressurized, robot in home position, batteries plugged in and strapped down, PWMs, relays, IO wires all good, transmissions in correct gear, flag connected, guards on.

This is all stuff I check after the robot leaves the pit for a match. There’s a whole other set of checks the pit crew goes through before it leaves.

Yup, we use one and it has saved us numerous times.

We instituted a mental checklist after our first 2 matches (luckily only practice) in St. Louis because we realized we were sending the with a dead main battery, dead backup batteries on the OI, pins that need to be pulled before the match were not pulled, which led to complete disaster our first 2 matches, and than when we fixed the simple problems, are planetary gears decide not to work right and break on us which wasn’t fixed until the middle of day 2, and this problem would have been diagnosed if we weren’t too busy running around for batteries:ahh: :ahh: :ahh: . In Detroit before each match I spent about 2 minutes checking the robot and our robot went on without a hitch…

987 goes through the entire robot after each match. Looking mainly at the electronics (this has been a problem for us in the past) to make sure that no PWM’s have wiggled loose, we also tighten everything and do a prematch systems check to make sure the Drive Train is in high gear, the arm and claw are working, battery leads are ziptied together. Last year we had an actual printed check list, but we have mostly senior members in the pit this year so usuallynothing is forgotten.


I think I shall go make one…

thanks, Vivek

Team 2207 is using one this year. I have attached the file that we use. It is a basic, tighten bolts, check electrical connections, talk to next alliance, and some more stuff I think.

Things to Do Before Each Match.pdf (51.3 KB)

Things to Do Before Each Match.pdf (51.3 KB)

We use one adapted to the robot for each year. Biggies this year are to check that the battery is fresh and ziptied in, the air valve is shut, hybrid mode switches are set to correct position, driver 2 has control board and tether cable, robocoach has remote, etc.

The whole point of a checklist is that it is not stored in someone’s head. Relying on the pit and drive crews to remember everything is risky, especially if what they need to remember is more than about five or six things.

One copy of our robot’s “preflight” list is affixed to the inside of the robot. It steps through a full functional test of all motors, pressure regulators, pneumatic actuators, and sensors.

We have a set of systems checks the drive team, mentors and pit crew run through after each match, as well as a list of things the drive team needs each time it goes to the field. We also have a safety checklist that drive team members know to follow after the matches to make sure no one gets hurt. Stored energy means safety procedures are mandatory.

We do a full check before leaving the pit, and then have a written list we use in the staging area and on the field for placement. To be sure we don’s lose it, it is written on the top of my left hand, with a sharpie*. This way it won’t get lost or forgotten.

The 2008 list includes:

New Battery (s)
Battery zip-tied
Back-Up Battery zip-tied
Pneumatic bleed closed
Pneumatic air pressure over 100 psi
Hybrid Mode Set
Robot ON
IR sensor ON

  • which i am sure will be determined later in my life to be causing some disease :ahh:

1675 does their check in the pit just before queuing.

It includes (I’m going off of memory here)
[li]Battery Check[/li][LIST]
[li]New battery[/li][li]Battery secured[/li][/ul]
[li]Pneumatics Check[/li][ul]
[li]Check pressure and all that jazz.[/li][/ul]
[li]Electrical Check[/li][ul]
[li]Check IO connections(PWMs/Relays/Digitals/etc.)[/li][li]Tighten connections in distribution block[/li][/ul]
[li]Controls/Code Check[/li][ul]
[li]Reload working version of code, EVEN IF you are 150% sure you didn’t work on it since last match.[/li][li]Test drive control[/li][li]Test manipulator control (if safe)[/li][/ul]
[li]Drivers Check[/li][ul]
[li]Are they here???[/li][li]Do they have their screwdriver? (more on this later)[/li][/ul]
[li]Mechanical Check[/li][ul]
[li]Tighten any crucial nuts/bolts/screws/things[/li][/ul]

Yeah, since our fiasco at the Quarterfinals of Midwest, our drivers carry a screwdriver for the distribution block with them, just in case.

(PS: ooh, nested bulleted lists!)