Are any other teams making a showbot like to use for demonstrations? Rather than using a previous years robot
The HOT Team has had one for some time, if I remember correctly.
This is the first year that i know of, that we have decided to go with a showbot. Last years robot was too difficult to transport, so we decided to go with a showbot that is sorta similar to last years robot that we can easily take to places like different schools for recruiting.
The TechnoKats have a show bot which is just a drive base, but who needs to shoot balls around in the State House!
Right now we have a driveable base which looks awesome with the neon lights from last years game…Shooting is the best part, we were thinking about shooting tennis balls, i suggested golf balls but that got shot down for some reason, lol…now we are trying to make a pneumatic cannon to shoot tennis balls and possibly t-shirts
Yes, HOT created a show bot a few years back.
We call it a shobot, but more specifically, we call it CASEY (Community Awareness of Science and Education Year-round).
We built CASEY V1 in the fall of 2004. It was a monster of a robot, in all respects, especially as far as size and weight go. V1 literally frightened many kids; after all, it was 3 to 4 times the size of many of them.
CASEY V1 featured an eight wheel drivetrain, powered by 1 CIM into an extra 2004 HOTBOT gearbox, one gearbox on each side. The gearbox connected to the four wheels on its side via two 25-pitch chains(bad idea): one for the front two wheels and one for the back two wheels. This proved to throw a chain about every 10-15 minutes of operation. V1 had a 3-accumulator balloon-blowing rig. There was an actuating arm on one side as well. Also, an old laptop running MS PowerPoint with a slide show of animated faces, and later a looping animation a cartoonish head created by our animation team. The laptop ran off an inverter that could run a small garage shop, plugged into a 12v robot battery. The whole thing, with the standard two batteries, weighed in around 175 lbs.
A nice shot of CASEY V1 with some Red Hatters:
We were stuck thinking inside the box, basically making something more suited for the FIRST playing field, rather than the park and out in the community.
In the summer and fall 2005, we set out to make CASEY V2. Learning from our many mistakes in V1, we ventured out of the FRC-style-robot box with some specific goals in mind. First, it had to be approachable for elementary kids. Second, it needed to be more reliable, lighter, and more elegant in its features.
CASEY V2 shrunk to nearly half the size of V1 and took on a more human look. CASEY went on a diet and dropped to about 90 lbs without battery. V2 solved the chain problem by eliminating chains all together. We took a kit gearbox with one CIM and directly mounted a large, billet wheel to the output shaft of the gearbox. There are two powered wheels and two un-powered omni wheels up front. The entire chassis, and most of the rest of V2, is built out of folded and rolled aluminum sheets. V2 has a balloon-blowing system again, as that feature was such a big hit with V1. V2 also bends at the ‘waist’ to bow. The head of V2 is very interesting: we used a 3D, laser scanning system to scan one of our teacher’s faces. Then we took that scan profile and used a CAM mill to cut it out of a piece of solid aluminum.
Left: See the resemblance? Right: CASEY V2 and I getting ready for a parade:
Great crowd reaction to CASEY V2:
To get the kids involved, the controls are a lot more simple and kid-friendly. We use a one-stick control system for driving, with a potentiometer controlling a variable software-governed speed limit. Without speed control, V2 is wicked, crazy, super fast (it makes some great donuts power-sliding on the gym floor, let me tell you)! CASEY V2’s speed and acceleration is why there is a wheelie bar sticking out the back.
Hey! Beyond the technical talk there’s a moral!
If your team is looking to make a show bot, try to make it do something that doesn’t need a playing field! Get creative!
I’ve seen a few t-shirt cannon robots on CD in the past few months. Those are great non-game bots!
Interacting with your community (Safely) and the people in it (Safely), with a show bot, is a great medium to spread the message of FIRST and get the word out about your team!
Right now 1646 is working on a t-shirt shooting robot for use at basketball and football games. We’re using the chassis from 2006’s robot, and adding a rotating pneumatic cannon to shoot rolled up shirts. It’s looking to be pretty cool I’ll post pictures as soon as we have any (and I figure out how to do that… man I’m new at this… :o )