Team Update #1

It’s a bit of a frown town for me with the 84" rule, since 60" would’ve posed a challenge, and now that it’s 84" this year is almost identical to 2007 (yes, the tubes are different and such, but I digress). The minibot change was predictable, FIRST definitely didn’t want to allow any kind of projectile, as that could have caused field damage and/or a safety problem.

Also, something i found very interesting was this:
“MINIBOT use is independent of the ROBOT inspection. For example, any FTC team can bring a MINIBOT to an event, get it inspected, and if legal, that MINIBOT can compete with any FRC ROBOT (that has passed ROBOT inspection). There are legal HOSTBOTS and legal MINIBOTS; they are independent of each other regarding inspection.”

Does this mean that FIRST is trying to get FTC teams to build minibots independent of FRC teams and bring them to events? This kind of FTC/FRC collaboration puts teams (like mine, 1507) at a disadvantage simply due to the fact that there isn’t an FTC team around.

Re-quoted for truth. 60" was a good challenge, but a little bit too good.

Perhaps 148’s hanger wasn’t as exciting to you because they took it off prior to their first regional and never used in a match. I know if they did use it, I would have rather watched it than some rickety 19 second scissor lift. (Actually that’s not true, scissor lifts are awesome…)

And this is why I make sure to read every post by Cory McBride.

The minibot aspect of this update is disappointing. As others have stated, it would have been a lot of fun to see the different ways minibots avoided using motors. It probably would have made the end game more exciting as well. I know my team was planning on using surgical tubing as a source of stored energy. Oh well.

By leveling the playing field in terms of energy sources, I think this just makes teams focus more on the deployment of the minibot. Teams have always managed to come up with fantastic solutions to all of the problems in each game, and I am guessing that this case will be no different.

That being said, I am glad the 60" diameter was expanded to 84". Yes, the 60" rule was a tricky and interesting limitation, but I think we’ll see a lot more competitive strategies with the new rule.

I completely agree. What is the point in the minibot challenge to see what design works after week one and to copy it identically within a day? That’s inspiring AND encourages innovation…

FTC is a failure in comparison to VEX and FIRST should cut their loses. MI hardly even supports FTC because it takes away from FRC, we have 0 competitions in MI and no one’s making a big deal about it (at least that I know of).

It will and it will also help teams that already designed for being in that 60" envelope. There are so many ideas that are being tossed up and I am sure that teams will dominate regardless of being within the 60" or not.


and this…

Really Disappointing FIRST…

I really liked the 60" cylinder rule, it made the game an actual design challenge rather then copying 2007 arms/manipulators.

Am I the only one who sees the FTC minibot as an exciting challenge for FTC teams to be in demand at an FRC competition? Can you imagine how in demand the fastest FTC minibot might be if it proves to be faster than all the FRC built minibots? How great is the chance for an FTC team who can’t afford to be an FRC team, but now can come and have some play with the big guys.

Not to be mean, but this is the FRC competition, not the FTC competition. I want to have fun designing a minibot, not use someone elses.

Whoops, my bad. 217, not 148. Easy to get the two mixed up…

While 217’s hanger was exciting to watch, after seeing it time after time again, if there was something else going on on the field, I was more likely to watch that. If it’s 217 vs a team in their final match of their final event, they’re hanger is working for the first time, and it takes 20 seconds to get up there, I’m watching that bot. There’s a lot of overwhelming joy in seeing something succeed after multiple failures, for whatever reason. I’m not trying to say that a team like 217 isn’t inspiring - they are. I am always impressed with the students from teams like that and what they have been able to accomplish. But I am also inspired by the other teams at the competitions who often get overshadowed by the extremely successful robots. Someone who is proud of what their robot can do, no matter how it compares to the competition, is always someone to provide inspiration.


I also like how the FTC folks are able to get involved with the FRC process this year, but it’s always a bit of a let down when you’re told you can’t launch things into the air. :slight_smile:

The 84" rule is a good change, too. I don’t think we’ll need it, but it will be nice to see more robots running around with long arms sticking up in the air. It makes for entertaining matches.

That is your choice and I don’t think you were being mean.

Hmm, not to be Johnny Raincloud but I’m fairly sure 217 removed their arm as well, at least I seem to remember them not having it at FLR. Hmm.

No, you aren’t the only one, Al. Perhaps you are using some of that ‘rational passion’ that Dr. Flowers was talking about. This is a 20 year celebration; it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that it is a big moment for FIRST, celebrating its achievements. 3 of its achievements are FRC, FTC, and FLL. In the past twenty years, other programs have sprung up and developed and that’s great but this is FIRST’s game.


We are fortunate in that we sponsor 9 FTC teams, including the reigning FTC Hot Shot World Champs - so our perspective is this is a good thing, but I can certainly understand every one elses frustration, if you don’t have that kind of access to an FTC team. We are inviting all of our FTC teams, plus all the other FTC Teams in our region to a competion we are hosting in 3 weeks. The winning team will be traveling with us to both Manchester and to our “home” regional in Baltimore. We are hopeful we can bring more than one with us, so they can help other FRC teams.


No worries Mr. Raincloud, you are correct. :stuck_out_tongue:

I would agree if there were more than a handful of FTC teams around here.

Wouldn’t it have been greater to have the 50 or more Vex teams in this area inspired and in demand?

I think FIRST needs to find a dose of the gracious part of GP 'cause they seem to have forgotten.


And especially this.

And this. 60" cylinder was enough space to make it a decent challenge. 84" just makes it easy.

I’ve done FRC for almost a decade now. These rule changes are of 2002 tether-rule in magnitude. I’m not thrilled.

It’s a case of taking a challenge that is complex and engaging with multiple solutions, and dumbing it down.

Does this mean FRC teams can compete in FTC next year? I really don’t want to make a minibot now if it is now a battle of weight! Why put surgical tubing on the list if NO stored energy is allowed. I would have loved to make a projectile, now we can’t. Wanted to then make one with surgical tubing and motors used in unison, now we can’t.

I really think this is a very poor choice. It is like a rat race!

I was looking forward not only to designing a launching minibot, but also to watching them in competition. Slow, motor driven minibots will be much less exciting to watch

As for the cylinder rule, 84" certainly gives more room for arms and such, but I liked the challenge that 60" presented.