Team UPDATE 1-21-2014

Posted on the FRC Manual 2014 site, 1/21/2014: [ 154]( 154)

Game Manual - Team UPDATE - 2014-01-21

Game Manual
General Updates

With the change to G4 below, Question 65 has been updated to match.

Q. Q. G4-D entirely within their GOALIE ZONE. Building a standard kitbot in a wide configuration will cause part of the robot to be outside the GOALIE ZONE when the bumpers are attached. Is it necessary to build a narrower robot to ensure the bumpers and robot fir entirely within the GOALIE ZONE?

A. Per G4-C, ROBOTS starting in their GOALIE ZONE may only be in contact with the carpet in the GOALIE ZONE. [strike]must be contained entirely within the GOALIE ZONE[/strike].

Drawing FE-00037 has been updated to include more detail on the relative locations of the VISION TARGETS.

Section 3.2.2: Pre-MATCH


When placed on the FIELD, each ROBOT must be:

  1. in compliance with all ROBOT rules (i.e. have passed Inspection),
  2. confined to its STARTING CONFIGURATION,
  3. [strike]entirely within[/strike] only in contact with the carpet in their GOALIE ZONE, or
    [strike]entirely within[/strike] only in contact with the carpet in the white ZONE and between the TRUSS and their GOALS, and
  4. fully supported by the floor.

TEAMS positioning ROBOTS in the white ZONE have precedence over opponents placing ROBOTS in the GOALIE ZONE.

*Violation: If fix is a quick remedy: the MATCH won’t start until all requirements are met. If it is not a quick remedy: the ROBOT will be DISABLED and must be re-Inspected.
Section 3.2.3: General Rules


An ALLIANCE may not POSSESS their opponent’s BALLS. The following criteria define POSSESSION :

  1. “carrying” (moving while supporting BALLS in or on the ROBOT),
  2. “herding” (repeated pushing or bumping),
  3. “launching” (impelling BALLS to a desired location or direction via a MECHANISM in motion relative to the ROBOT), [strike]and[/strike] or
  4. “trapping” (overt isolation or holding one or more BALLS against a FIELD element or ROBOT in an attempt to shield them).

Violation: TECHNICAL FOUL per instance. If extended, another TECHNICAL FOUL. If strategic, RED CARD for the ALLIANCE.

Section 4.6: BUMPER Rules


BUMPERS must be constructed as follows (see Figure 4-8):

A. be backed by ¾ in. (nominal) thick by 5 in. (± ½ in) tall plywood or solid, robust wood. Small clearance pockets and/or access holes in the plywood backing are permitted, as long as they do not significantly affect the structural integrity of the BUMPER.

Section 4.8: Power Distribution


Each power regulating device may control electrical loads per Table 4-4. Unless otherwise noted, each power regulating device may control one and only one electrical load.

*Multiple low-load, pneumatic solenoid valves, electric solenoids or CUSTOM CIRCUITS may be connected to a single relay module. This would allow one (1) relay module to drive multiple pneumatic actions or multiple CUSTOM CIRCUITS. No other electrical load can be connected to a relay module used in this manner.

Could someone explain what this means?

What I picked up is that if you start in the goalie zone (at least in auto), you cannot leave the goalie zone.

I don’t believe it says that. I believe they simply changed the wording to say that to begin in the goalie zone, your bumpers may be outside the zone, but anything touching the ground must be touching only the goalie zone carpet. It doesn’t sound like you are restricted to staying there after Autonomous (see G15).

Basically the verbiage change allows for a robot that’s too large to be ‘entirely’ within the goalie zone to start in the goalie zone, and or expand outside of it, as long as they don’t touch the carpet. The same can be said for starting in the white zone as well, as the rules were previously written, a robot couldn’t have any part of itself extending outside of the white zone, where as not it cannot touch anything outside of the white zone.

Realistically, the change allows more robots to start in the goalie zone, and/or allows for a few more inches of adjustment in regards to starting positions in autonomous. For example, if you had a robot that missed a shot because it was say, 4 inches too far back, you could now start the robot up 4" more, as long as you don’t touch the carpet outside of the white zone. There’s also bit more room to play with robot to robot alignment where an inch or two could be the difference between helping a partner score or not.

Oh, I see, I mistook “starting in” with “staying in” and assumed it was a typo meant to mean that you couldn’t move out of the zone. Thanks!


If you start in your goalie zone, you’re more or less stuck there for the entirety of autonomous, you can touch the carpet outside of the goalie zone (if you needed to turn, or move forward slightly,etc) but you cannot at any point be completely out of contact with the carpet in the goalie zone.

I was editing my post while trying to find exactly what rule # that was, thanks.

only in contact with the carpet in their GOALIE ZONE

So you can’t be touching the Alliance Station Wall? Or a Low Goal? Could have before.

The GDC giveth, the GDC taketh away. Blessed be the name of the GDC.

This isn’t that big of deal, even just being 1/8in away from touching the wall or low goal is fine and I don’t see how that would have and effect on a robot design or strategy.

I suspect that “only” is a restriction on “carpet” rather than “contact”. In other words a robot starting in the GOALIE ZONE can’t be positioned in contact with the carpet outside of the GOALIE ZONE but contacting other field elements is acceptable.
Sounds like clarification opportunity for the Q&A.

Looks like we’re not being granted use of quick exhaust valves this season. Maybe next year. :frowning:

I agree with what MikeE is saying; all your wheels have to be within the GOALIE ZONE at the beginning of Autonomous. It will be close with one bumper in the wide kitbot configuration, but we’re hoping we make it. Touching a low goal or alliance wall should not be a problem.

It might be worth keeping in mind that the field tolerances (in this case, the tape) can vary a bit, IIRC it’s something like +/- 1". I doubt this will be all that big of a problem (worst case, point out that the field line is out of tolerance and they might fix it) but it’s worth being aware of as you design/build your robot. If you’ve got something like 1/8" between being legal, and not legal, you might be in for an adventure, considering that a gaffers tape line that ‘appears straight’ probably varies about that much.

Also, as far as touching/not touching the walls/goal are concerned, you should only need to pass the paper test - i.e. if you can slide a sheet of paper between the object and your robot, you should be fine.

Dump valves are a great way to release an absolutely tremendous amount of energy in a very short period of time. I think the reason that FIRST has been reluctant over the years to allow them is likely safety-based. (One can make the argument that the same is true of elastic energy, etc, etc, but imagine what trouble an enterprising FIRST team can get up to with a couple dozen liters of accumulators and a dump valve at 60 psi…)

Confirmed by [Team Update 2014-01-24]( 155)