Tool for one, Tool for all

I don’t know if this is the appropriate forum, but I justify it as it’s teams organizing things. So there you go.

I was sitting here with a neat thought. It stems from an idea the Thunderchickens (and probably other teams) did at regional competitions and nationals. A “Tool List”. People that have, say, a grinder, or power drills, etc. write it in on the list, then when someone needs a tool they don’t have, they check the list, and find the team.

My proposed idea is for a “Regional Tool List”. A lot of teams have other teams within 15-20 minutes of a driving distance. This is a call to teams to do this on their own, not a national/international list. Some teams have CNC machines, others have hack-saws and their dad’s power drill. I think it would be a very graciously professional thing for Team X to have Team Y able to call because Y has something they need done, but X has the tools.

I feel this would be a good way to equalize the “bar” that teams are competing against while not lowering it or having to throw money at a problem.

Do with the thought as you will. Perhaps some comments to any cons of doing this?

super idea! Ive been involved with starting new teams here in rochester NY

and one idea a couple of us came up with, its really taking your idea one step farther.

If we could create one location in the city, a FIRST team center.

It could have one playfield, one machine shop, one computer/printer/scanner room

one photography/video room

a lunch room, a place to hold large meetings (like the kickoff satellite presentation)

and individual rooms for teams to meet and work on their own machines and ideas.

This would make it so much easier for new HS’s to start teams - half your resources would be there for you already

and by sharing resources like this, it would push teams out of the hacker method of building things.

  1. start building your robot
  2. firgure out what you want it to do
  3. try it and see what it actually does
  4. GOTO 1

and instead would force people to spend the first week or so after the kickoff thinking about what they want the robot to do, and then building once. (Thats how engineering is suppose to work and it CAN be done).

Also, small local teams could share bus rides to regionals, the championship, stage expo matches, attend science fairs at grade schools

with multi team cooperation the possibilties are phenominal.

Great idea! Something like this is just what we need to help out the less fortunate teams near all of us, or get help from the big teams around us. I’d be all for such a system.

Yet another spectaular idea Brandon


An idea is nothing unless acted upon

Sounds like a great idea, tell me if you need any help.


It’s not so much me needing the help. The lists aren’t really for public distibution and compilation. We don’t want a list of tools from every team so that team 470 knows what 173 is willing to lend out.

The type of lists I’m saying are, team 470 talks with 862, 5, and 66, (these 4 are within 20-30 min of driving). Each writes up what they have in-shop, and what they can lend out. Then the teams create a “Master-List”. Something along the lines of:

Tool -------------------------- Team
CNC Mill --------------------- 470
CNC Lathe ------------------ 862
Drill Press -------------------- 470, 5
Chop Saw ------------------- 66, 862
Portable Band Saw -------- 470

etc etc etc. So when team 5 needs a days use out of a chop saw, they can call team 66 or 862 and ask if they can come in and use it. Or if 66 needs a Portable Band-Saw for a couple days, ask 470 to borrow it.

This wouldn’t be a solo or group project. It’s an idea for teams to get organized about know just what tools they have at their disposal, and teams without the tools to know where they can use them at.