The Pits

hey does anyone know or know where i can find the size of the pits, im just saying a general size because were working on a pit set up and no one can find the pit size so if anyone can help that would be greatly appreciated thanks guys, Look forward to seeing you all this year at competitions

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Although not an exact dimension as pits in venues differ, large size would be 10x10 feet, small would be 8x8 feet.
If you plan for an 8x8 pit, you should be golden.

That’s just a typical size, and is not exact.
Some venues have more space, some have less… but those 2 sizes are the general consensus.

Some more details:

I know this isn’t too helpful, but I’m going to recommend having an adjustable setup. If you’re making a PVC roofish thing set it up with a pair of collars in the middle of each pipe with a pipe between them that you can swap out for different lengths. My father and I use this method on out ghetto canoe outriggers in case we catch the “big one” (wishful thinking, I know) and it works perfectly, allowing us to adjust lengths and angles for the amount of stabilization we need, and drag we’re willing to put up with.

8x8 is what we usually end up having at the regionals I’ve been to

I suggest you ask Technokats what size their pit is. They have had a portable enclosure for many years.

When I began my association with the TechnoKats two years ago, I think the pit frame was 10’x10’. Shortly afterwards, it was cut down by a foot in each direction because of the smaller pits at some regionals.

They are 10x10 minus the dividers

I need to resurrect this thread to get some better info:

  1. There now is a rule 7.7.4 that states that

For safety and because of insurance regulations, teams cannot build any structure that supports people or items for storage above the work area in their pit space. No structures should be higher than 10 feet above the floor and must safely support any signs or displays mounted to the structure. FIRST will require the removal of any pit structure that is deemed unsafe by event management personnel and local committee members

OK…That makes a lot of sense

  1. BUT, it also seems like the pit perimiter is 10’x10’ at the Atlanta championship, but may be as small as 8’x8’ at regionals.

Is there really any standard?

  1. According to the official FIRST Q&A Forum (

The intended table size is a 6’X30” banquet table, with no linen or draping. In some sites it may be larger, such as 8’X30”.

So it appears that the pits “may” be as small as 6’ or 8’ in width (yikes!)

Pits need to be set-up quickly onthe morning of the competition and can’t be set-up the evening before; correct? namely, the rules stipulate that ONLY robot unpacking can occur with a small number of people BEFORE the 1st day of any event…

Some other pit thoughts we’ve been mulling-over

  1. No roof/top over pit since the ambient lighting from gym/hall will be needed to work on robot
  2. Need at least 80" to 90" of vertical clearance at front of pit/booth to roll robot on car in and out of pit area
  3. Although the pit comes equipped with one table, we’re thinking of re-using parts of the robot crate (e.g. the doors) as extra tables/shelves.

Other creative thoughts?

The size of the table in the pit and the overall size of the pit itself are independent variables - except of course that the pit must be at least as large as the supplied table.

Surely you don’t interpret that because some regionals will have 6 x 2.5 -foot tables, that will be the maximum size of the pit?

Hi Gary,
Agreed. Each team needs to assume that the pit perimiter will be GREATER than the table size…now, that would be funny!

Anyways, except for the Atlanta championship, there doesn’t appear to be a guideline for pit size. If a team was to procure one of those pop-up tents or pop-up backdrops, it would be good to NOT have it too big which would encroach on your neighboring pits…and that’s not “gracious professionalism” unless your a landlord mogul like Donald Trump!

I’d have to build a pit that is 10’x10’ only to find that it’s too big for most regionals, etc. Anyone else got input on this?

Is the table-size like one of those tables you have at lunch or in the library? I though that the table was a lot smaller.

Anyway, we have to adjust now to fit the display under the table.

Are any folding chairs provided in addition to the table?

In past years (at least at competitions I’ve attended) there have not been chairs provided.

I concur with Katie that no folding chairs were provided in 2005 at:
Finger Lakes Regional
Buckeye Regional
Toronto Regional
Atlanta Championship

so…your team should NOT be congregating in front of your pit except to show-off stuff to the judges as they make their rounds. Your team should be off meeting other teams and scouting them (their pits, robot, spirit, etc) or should be sitting in the stands cheering other teams.

But…with that said, if you have somebody on your team that really needs a chair, consider a way to put a lightweight chair into your robot crate or carry to the event.

Just be sure to NOT block the aisles with chairs, etc. It gets really crazy in the pit area.

ps: I’m still looking for info on the “size” of pits at various regionals…

Pits can’t be set up the evening before. The only time robot unpacking can occur before Thursday’s pre-entry is Wednesday night at the Championship; all regionals have it about 1/2 hour before main opening on Thursday. Plus, takedown should be quick too as you need to get it down in an hour or so (give or take a bit, depending on how you do).

The pits are very, very crowded. So having a bunch of people in/around your pit would not be the best idea… Unless you got one of the end ones, like we did at nationals :slight_smile: