What would a component be?

I have read the definitions and the section carefully, but I’m not understanding what it’s telling me.
Our robot is made from carbon fiber and it’s all put together, but the handbook said that one component can’t be over $400 USD. We all use the carbon fiber that is pieced together, but would that be considered one component.

Please help…

It seems fairly straightforward.


COMPONENT – A ROBOT part in its most basic configuration, which can not be disassembled without
damaging or destroying the part, or altering its fundamental function.
 Example 1: raw aluminum stock, pieces of steel, wood, etc., cut to the final dimensions in which
they will be used on the ROBOT, would all be considered components. Bolting pieces of
extruded aluminum together as a ROBOT frame would constitute a MECHANISM, and the
collection of pieces would not be considered a COMPONENT.

Add “carbon fiber” to the list of materials in Example 1. Does it make sense in your situation now?

If you cut a robot frame from one large piece of material, the frame itself is a component. If you make several pieces and fasten them together to make a frame, the frame is a mechanism and each individual piece of the frame is a component.

I think you asking to the effect of, “We bought a sheet of carbon fiber thats more then $400. Can we use that one piece of carbon fiber to make many parts?” If that is what your asking, then yes, you can. It would be the same as buying all the carbon fiber seperately for each part. Most teams buy bulk in the sense that they order one 60" piece of Al sq tube instead of four 15" pieces of square tubing. So, as long as you break the carbon fiber into pieces that have an equivalent value or less of $400, then you should be ok. Sorry for being a little wordy there, I thought it was the best way to explain it.

That applies only if carbon fiber was available in smaller pieces that cost less than $400. See, this bullet point:

The cost of items purchased in bulk or large quantities may be prorated on the basis of the
smallest commonly available unit that satisfies the need for the item.
o Example: A team purchases a 4’ x 4’ sheet of aluminum, but only uses a piece 10” x 10”
on their ROBOT. The team identifies a source that sells aluminum sheet in 1’ x1’ pieces.
The team may cost their part on the basis of a 1’ x 1’ piece, even though they cut the
piece from a larger bulk purchase. They do not have to account for the entire 4’ x 4’ bulk
purchase item.

Of course, if they buy a piece for $395 and cut 7 parts out of it, the cost of the parts in total is $395.

Okay. I understand all of that, but would welding the pieces together make it a component or a mechanism? When we cut the pieces and weld them together will that make it a component or a mechanism? This was one of the other questions that I had in the back of my mind.

Welding would *probably *make it a component. You can’t take it apart without damage/destruction, can you?