questions

bumper-
is it legal to use velcro as a back up along with bolts or another sturdy connector ?

pit-
are we aloud to use projectors and/or music in the pits?

I don’t think you really have much space in the pit for a projector. You should not have music in the pits, they are already loud enough.

yeah there is not much space. but is there any rules prohibiting it?

With regards to the bumpers, I think that would be acceptable. Final determination would lie with the inspectors at your event, however.

For the pit, the projector would be OK if it was used in such a way that it didn’t blind people. (i.e., short-range, aimed at a screen) A TV or laptop would probably be better. But the music…

If it’s loud music, you will be asked to turn it down/off; after two warnings, you can bid the music (and possibly your pit power) goodbye. (Administrative Manual 4.15, 10th bullet). The music can (read: will) interfere with your team and other teams hearing the announcements. Also note that the pits are pretty noisy as they are: work, conversation, noise coming from the arena, pit announcements, cheering as teams come back from events, and (hopefully not) yells of “ROBOT!!!” as teams move their robots around.

This is interesting. [R28] specifies that “bumpers must attach to the Frame Perimeter of the Robot with a rigid fastening system to form a tight, robust connection to the main structure/frame (e.g. not attached with Velcro)”. I think the idea is that teams may not use only velcro because it is not robust, but the statement also seems to ban Velcro totally. I don’t think this was the intent, which means…

Q&A time!

Also, is there a reason why you need Velcro in addition to whatever you have? If your standard mounting system is weak enough that it needs Velcro, then Velcro will not really help.

I had the same thought. If bolts can’t hold your bumpers on, how will Velcro?

As for the projector, feel free to bring one, as I haven’t seen anything in the rules to the contrary. Realize that you probably won’t be allowed to project on stuff outside of your pit, and limiting the projection area to inside your pit usually means that you could be better off having a small TV or laptop sitting out showing whatever you want to have projected.

That being said, there are still some cool uses for projectors. 1730 uses a projector for their pit banner.

Seen this done by 935 at GKC in the past. Paired with a professional looking pit structure you have a very nice pit.
IMHO- Music is not ok, but commentary from the matches, or from a different video is ok. ie. Noise that has a specific purpose, not just “background noise” like music often is. Keep in mind, you may be asked by officials to turn it off, but we haven’t had a problem with that except at championships.

we have found that with bolts as fasteners the bumpers stay on but the tend to wiggle around a bit we were hoping to use industrial Velcro to keep them from making any movement.

This probably calls for more bolted connections, farther apart from one another. Could you provide a picture?

I am not sure what Velcro will buy you. Since rule [28] specifically says not Velcro, I would not represent it to the inspectors as part of your primary attachment system. ie The other fasteners would have to fully support the bumpers to the requirement of the rules.

Watching week one videos, I saw a lot of poorly attached bumpers though.

We used Velcro one year to hold down the battery. It work really well, but is was a pain to change batteries. It took a pry bar to remove the battery.