What're Our Thoughts on Wall Climbing?

So, had a little idea to tilt the robot up using the hangar wall to reach the traversal rung. I played around in 2D space a little bit, and, as stupid as it sounds, it actually seems to work (geometrically). Basically, you’d need to have a set of wheels on the front and back that you can extend to the full 16" out and down to the floor. You then drive up the wall (haven’t figured out how hard that is yet), extend a little hook arm to around 16" out and up to the 5’6" height limit, then retract the outer wheels, and now you’re fully supported by the traversal rung.

A conceptual sketch:

And my dimensioned 2D geometry sketch:

  1. Is this legal? The closest I can find is G301 (damaging the field), but I highly doubt this would actually damage the field (if done properly)
  2. It pretty much requires the robot to be 36" in length (or width I guess).
  3. Am I being dumb?

Your room for error here seems absolutely puny. It looks like you have less than an inch of clearance, and that’s with your full extension. I think this would be harder than trying to climb the rungs normally.

Keep in mind also that the location of field elements in real life might not perfectly match the drawings, and it’s not impossible for discrete field elements to be misplaced by an inch or two, which throws everything off.


Last year the safe zone near the High Goal was so appealing many teams designed their robots around that. Then came gameplay and lining up in the “safe zone” with a hard shot was not the right choice.

Not saying you have a bad idea but think. Would it work?

Ideally in in any scenario you want repeatable and in short time

Reminds me of this trick from 2016: Dark FRC, show me your secrets - #43 by Michael_Corsetto


A hang counts if you’re touching the alliance wall.
And there’s no rule saying you can’t “drive” on the alliance wall (yet).

Might make for a fun inspection… “Show me how your climber works.”


Make the robot longer and also tip at a closer to a 45 degree angle? Looks like this is the “minimum viable dimension”

This “minimum viable dimension” is with a 36" long robot, which would lead to a very long, skinny robot. Typical WCD frames are 32" long and a square robot is of course 30" long.


36” gets you ~24” wide max which is entirely viable.


Yeah, there’s very little room for error with 36", but I don’t think that matters as much if the field elements are in the “correct” space (which I understand is the kicker). I don’t actually think we’ll do this, but it just seemed like an interesting “off-the-wall” (pun intended) idea to get some feedback on.

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Niche robots require niche compromises


Our 2020 robot was 36" long and 22" wide

326 in 2013 had a robot almost as long as their team name


You could shwack a vacuum cup on the wall and pull up :wink:


The vacuum would probably be forbidden under G301.C - robots are forbidden from “attaching to” the ARENA - but driving up is probably OK, if weird


I am sure there is some clever mechanism, but sniff test says you need a big wheel on the wall side in order to have a usable tangential angle to climb with. Also I want whatever wheels you are using to get the coefficient of friction to initially drive this thing up the wall XD.

All kidding aside: way to think outside the box, I wouldn’t rely on a loophole for overall robot architecture, but still.


At point 48:10 of the kick-off video, someone asks ‘do you have to climb the rungs in order?’ The response is ‘that a robot can only be tall enough to reach the first two so it is up to the teams to figure out how to get there.’ That is still pretty vague. Our team started wondering about that too but quickly moved on. I would like to see what your team comes up with. This is a pretty cool idea.

Edit: After scouring the manual and videos the lead on the climber system is stoked to try and make this work. Thanks!


I adore this concept.

This is not the right concept for my team this year.

But wow I adore this concept.

A 38" robot gets there pretty comfortably.

A 34" robot, with the low contact point under the bar, can get it done

So maybe instead of rolling up the wall - deploy a stinger on the floor at ~39" off wall that doesn’t move relative floor. May need to power it on a linear actuator or some such.
Then use an attachment to traverse up the wall and over to the ~45deg angle?

Note this architecture runs a high risk of ripping the carpet off the MDF floor mat, instead of staying stuck, regardless of how it tries to hold tension between the wall and floor. The carpet under the hanging areas of 2020-21 loved to flop around under robots.


Definitely a cool concept but I hope it’s not legal through a team update. I think this goes against the spirit of the traverse.

Way to think outside the box.


I’m perfectly capable of badgering FTAs until the field in within +/-1" spec. Anybody remember the 5 finals matches that lasted over an hour at 2019 LAR?



Troy will return next week, when he wakes up.

(I remember that one rather well…)