Taking your robot to the field

From the 1/13/14 game update:

While there is no corresponding change to the Game Manual, the LRI’s also wanted to make sure that all teams are aware that ROBOTs must fit in, and be transported in, a single
TRANSPORT CONFIGURATION volume at the event. This doesn’t mean the exact configuration of the robot within that volume must be the same every time, but that every time
a team is moving their robot as required under T6, they must do so using only one contiguous volume of the size and orientation specified

I am not sure how rigorously this will be enforced, but. This means if you have detachable arms or a mast, you cannot have some one carry a piece separate from the robot. It will all have to be in the robot transport volume. Safe transport will mean designing the robot so the detached pieces are not precariously crammed into the transport volume. It will make for some interesting maneuvers if it is required from the field to the cart.

If you take PVC pipe and slice it into pieces maybe 1" in length, then make two cuts separating it from an ‘O’ into a ‘C’, depending on the diameter of the pipe and geometry of a piece, it makes a nice clip that is super light, easy to mount, and can hold pieces securely, while being easy to release

I expect to see a whole lot more Que box robot construction than usual this year.

Even though the rules say that robots have to stay in the TRANSPORT CONFIGURATION until they get onto the field? Or are you worried more about “preparation for getting onto the field”, kinda like people untying their shoes while in the security line at the airport in preparation for taking them off at the security station?

Can it be in pieces?

As long as the pieces fit in a box that’s no larger than the transport configuration.

That said, you have 60 seconds to assemble the robot on the field. I’m sure the FTAs and Refs will be forgiving the first few rounds, but I expect that once the matches are 20 minutes behind schedule they’ll be making teams clear the field and go, ready or not.

This sounds backwards, but I really hope they’re firm about the time limit from the beginning. Set your robot down, 60 seconds to put it together, clear the field.

If you’re giving teams freedom in their first few matches they’ll adjust to that. Once you tighten it up they’ll get annoyed/have to change their system. I’d rather have to start sub-60 seconds and never, ever - not even once - have the chance to go over it.

My advice? Practice your NASCAR-pit-speed assembly early, and often. Right now we only have one assembly that may stick outside the transport config, and if it does you can be sure our Drive Team will spend a good chunk of their practice getting that stuff on & off the robot as efficiently as possible.

I hope our robot design works, because I’m pretty sure it will fit in the transport configuration without having to do anything to it, aside from make sure two mechanisms are at the end of their travel in the right direction.

I would be disappointed if the rule were not to be enforced… Abiding by it while giving the robot the functionality that we desire adds a layer of complexity to the build… I guess I could understand giving some “flexibility” to teams at the beginning of their week 1-3 events, but it would have to be limited lest it give an advantage to teams that disregarded the rule as they were designing their bot.