Usage of Motors and there crazy uses!

Did your team use these motors or things:

FP Xmission
Mabuchi Motor
FisherPrice Motor
RS-385PH Motor
RS-540 Motor
the window motors

and how did you use them, i never found a use for the RS-385PH Motor.

Team 1319 has used the Fisher Price motors and the window motors each coupled with DeWalt gearboxes. We plan on trying to look at ways to use the other motors over the summer.

Right now I have a FP motor on a VEX robot as a drive motor. Let’s just say it goes fast.

Window motors with Dewalt gearboxes? That’s a neat idea, I haven’t heard of that being done before. Seems like you probably wouldn’t need them since the window motors are already pretty slow, but if you were using them for a jointed arm, it would be very useful. Can you post more details on this?

FP Transmission/RS-540/FP Motor - We considered using two FP Transmissions with the BB540 and FP motor for our lift. Instead we used 2 CIMs and a wench for the lift. We then put the 540 & FP motors on AM Planetary Transmissions and put those into our AM SuperShifters to complement our drive train CIMs. The free-spin speed of the FP motor after the AM Planetary reduction wasn’t quite within the “rule of thumb” (± 10%) tolerances of the CIM, so we wound up removing these in Atlanta.

Window Motors - We didn’t consider these, as their torque/speed characteristics weren’t in line with what we were trying to do. We only needed motors in two subsystems (drive train & lift) and everything else was pneumatically driven.

Small BaneBots - We considered this for an upgrade to our paws. We wanted an active intake, yet we didn’t have enough FIXIT window time to make one and do the necessary repairs/upgrades that kept the bot going. There’s always next year…

There is a whitepaper called Nothing But Dewalts that shows in detail how to couple the DeWalt XRP 3 speed transmission with a CIM, Globe, and Fisher Price motor. We have used all three of these including the window motor on at least one of our robots from 2005 to 2008.

That reminds me of this post…

To answer the original poster’s question, I have used Fisher-Price motors (and gearboxes), as well as the RS-540 in the past. This year I used 2 F-P’s with gearbox to power our arm. For size-to-weight ratio, it’s tough to beat the Fisher-Price motors! The gearboxes can be a bit unwieldy, but we had no problems this year.

The RS-540 I have found to be useful for smaller applications, particularly with a BB gearbox. It’s not really durable, so don’t use it for anything that requires a ton of power, but for light actuation, or an application where it will spend most of it’s time free-spinning, it can be useful.

The small BB motors are great for intakes and smaller spinning devices(or if you’re team 25, drivetrain motors aswell). Window motors can be used for small arms and elevators. And the FP’s are most often used in drive trains as a replacement for Cims.

Or low-load uses, like 330’s ramps in 2007. (Geared down heavily, they had enough power to put them down or pull them up.)

FP transmissions are good for winches and arms without too much gearing down.

Window Motors- We attempted to use those for our lift this year, but the lift kept ruining the motors.

hehe. Funny story about those window motors. Apparently Vandoor Motors literally mean Van-Door motors.

Hah! I always figured there was a guy named vandoor that invented them or something…

The RS385’s are useful for rollers. A few teams used them.


I am familiar with the NBD paper, we used 4 CIMs attached to Dewalts for our drivetrain this past year. However, I’ve never seen anyone use the window motors with the Dewalts. Did you have to machine a coupling to go from the 8 pointed star output to the sun gear inside the Dewalt? Do you have any details on that?

Our biggest problem with using the window motors from year to year has been that they are different from year to year as far as how the motor looks under the faceplate. It is basically a re design each time we try and use one. I will see if I can get any details and put it into a whitepaper or at least some pics to share with the community. We never really thought we were doing anything that special but maybe we are. Does anyone else know of another team that does this?

Team 449 used a pair of window motors to power our forklift. After gearing them down a little more with a pair of sprockets &chain, it started beating me in arm wrestling competitions.