The Magic Smoke...

Ahh, the wonderful smell of a Fisher-Price motor that has issues and produces magical smoke…it was during the awards ceremony on Friday night at Chesapeake while most everyone was in the stands that I started smelling it…it’s something I only associate with robotics…ain’t that magic smoke just great? (Well not really, especially for the team whose motor shorts out).

Magic smoke is a great thing. We decided to use it in our motto this year :smiley:

I think the drill motors smell worse :yikes:

Uhh yeah… that was probably us. We were about 25ft away from your pit and we were experiencing… issues, with our fisher price motors.

We haven’t smoked the motors yet, but we have smoked the RC. :ahh: Fortunately for me (I was the one touching it, but it wasn’t my fault, I swear. :)), it survived.

ouch… i wouldnt feel so bad if i toasted a motor… but the RC?? yowwwwww

We fogged up a bit of our school’s commons with the magic smoke after a few donuts and burnouts. Think I might be a bit more careful with them now… :yikes:

@ UTC team 96 the lego team smoked out something in their drive I think… it was not good BUT it did look pretty sweet for a sec when in the middle of the field under the bar if looks like a smoke bomb went off. They fixed it though :smiley:

One of our pots let out the magic smoke, followed by a nice fireball, when I hooked the wires up backwards :slight_smile:

For the second year in a row, we had the solder melt on the drill motor connection with the standard “blue wire”. We replaced the solder connection with connectors, despite FIRST’s warning about the danger of warping plastic brush housings. Long nose pliers used as a heat sink seemed to help.

We tried hard not to smoke our motors this year, however, the smell of burnt plastic started emulating from one of the speed controlers :frowning: that was an expensive mistake.

yea phil, that tends to happen when we dont check to see if the speed controllers’ fans are spinning… :rolleyes:

At first we didn’t use muffin fans on our drill motors. So when running some practice, we got some magic smoke. Caught it in time and didn’t damage the motors (Thank God). But we changed the blue wires on the drill motors, because we thought they were too thin. THE NEXT DAY FIRST sends out an update warning not to do that. So we switched them back. But we’ve had no problems with them since then.

We did have a wire crossed on a speed controller, and totally smoked the fan on the speed controller. It looked pretty cool toasted.

Then we used too-thin-gauge wire for our double solenoid. I heard that smoked nicely too.

Sadly, I was not present for either of these wire smokings.

that happened to us the night before we had to ship :frowning: plus we’ve had a some more of that at competitions…

and no one can forget when we used too thin gauge wire when testing our winch…that made some nice smoke out of the wires in our school’s commons at like 3:00 am…at least no smoke alarms went off :wink:

magic smoke is great, my team over the past few years has smoked many a motor.

drill motor have come and gone quite often, though not too much smoke. servos, when you add WAY too much ampage to them, make a rather acrid magic smoke.

though my all time favorite would have to be accidentally putting power to both sides of a speed controller. it was a victor 884. at first the LED flashed from red to green, kind of slowly. then it sped up, going faster and faster until it held at a steady red and sparks shot up out of the muffin fan. expensive mistake, but it was pretty and dangerous at the same time, which is part of what FIRST is to me, having fun with things you would normally never be exposed to.

sniiiiif magic smoke…


so that’s why your robot did so well??!!?!

depends upon how you look at it.

i mean, in a sense, doing stupid things from time to time to find out what **not ** to do is helpful. but as for doing well this year, i think that is just because we were lucky enough to come up with a great robot, a drive team that is excellent, and a pit crew good enough to keep it running, programmers to help with the autonomous (have to seriously thank the few who learned C in a matter of weeks to help with it), and so on, the list could go on forever, sponsers, engineers, machinists, it goes on and on…