What is everyone making their base out of? We are a rookie FRC team and are looking for some ideas.
If you are a rookie team I’d highly recommend using the Kit Of Parts chassis with some of the upgrades that Andymark sells (specifically the 8" pneumatic wheel upgrade and the wedge upgrade).
We are making one of the basic chassis, but what do we do for where the mechanical stuff actually sits on. Someone else suggested plywood, but someone else said that’s not durable enough.
If you are a rookie team, I would suggest either assembling the kitbot that y’all got (and adding some sort of wedge like the one on andymark - https://oasis.jsc.nasa.gov/teams/heard/Documents/Forms/AllItems.aspx) or making one out of c-channel and corner connects - also available at andymark. You can see what our base last year looked like without wheels: https://www.facebook.com/FRC5414/photos/a.344091322441744.1073741829.304755109708699/344090839108459/?type=3&theater
plywood absolutely can be durable enough - but some teams may look past you for alliance partner because they’ll think it’ll break. If you’ve got base together, I’ve frequently used lexan as a bellypan for mounting electronics - but lots of other suggestions here: http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?t=131725&highlight=bellypan+material. You could use extruded aluminum or square tubing for connecting your manipulator stuff to your base - along with all sorts of brackets available at andymark and vex.
Plywood is fine. Make sure it’s an appropriate thickness, though…it comes in lots of varieties!
Also, without knowing what you’re trying to attach to it, we can’t make really useful suggestions…it might be that something else might work better, depending on your design. I know we are not planning to have a “base” on our robot, because the ball will be traveling through it.
For the past several years we have used donated aluminum road signs. .100 thick works great. Contact local county DOT
Plywood is great. 1/2" ply is what is suggested for the AM14U3. You do want to use quality plywood, not OSB. Properly attached it greatly strengthens the chassis. You really want to do through bolts with washers on the plywood side at 3 or more places on each side. That triangulates all the sides to keep it square.