Don’t want to clog up the main thread here: The Thrifty Bot - Product Releases & Updates but mods, feel free to move it if you think this product discussion should be merged in.
I did a quick price comparison for the WCP and TTB swerves. The WCP Falcon Swerve, with 2 NEOS, 2 Spark MAXs, and the CANcoder, costs ~$680. The Thrifty Swerve, with a NEO, Spark MAXs, Neo550, VP (plastic and metal ring gears), and CANcoder, costs ~$650.
For that $30 reduction, you’re looking at
- No bearings on the encoder gear
- No bearing on the main module rotation
- Plastic forks
- Plastic ring gear for rotation
- Neo550 for rotation instead of a Falcon
You also have to use the REV ecosystem in some way unless you use a different 550 motor and a Talon SRX for the rotation (which actually lets you save $10 on the encoder, but I digress). I’m trying to see what I’m missing about the product that makes it a better deal than what I can get from WCP or SDS modules. Maybe I’d pick it for the form factor, but taking that at the cost of reliability is something I would much rather not do.
I’m also worried about the swerve the interaction between the lower module and the steel tube around the Rendevous Point. For those unaware, swerve drives that hit the barrier at speed found themselves breaking aluminum wheels. With those kinds of forces, I’m doubtful that plastic forks, especially when split in two, won’t be a weak point for the system. Something like a single piece fork with extra reinforcements and a dead axle would make me feel a lot safer about the module.
Has there been destructive testing performed on these modules to compare them to metal modules? Maybe the plastic lends some flexibility and shock absorption?