Who did NOT have comm problems in Waterloo regional?

After reading thread after thread about communication problems, I became quite worried about how the Waterloo regional would go. I’m proud to say that team 610 had no inexplicable communication problems in either the Waterloo or the Rochester regionals. How did the other teams in Waterloo do? Was our team just lucky, or did the vast majority of teams experience no problems?

(Admittedly, we weren’t entirely unhampered by comm issues. Our radio’s power connector fell out during one Rochester match, and 3161, our alliance partner in Waterloo, lost comm during a quarters match for a reason I don’t yet know.)

We had no comm problems on the field whatsoever!

Great regional from a field management standpoint. Does anyone know just how far ahead of schedule the event ran at times? I remember being called up to matches about 30 minutes before their scheduled start.

I don’t recall a single field fault or delay all weekend…

The ONLY communications frustration we had all weekend long was using the practice field wireless radio on our robot. The supplied equipment seemed to take FOREVER to sync up - it eventually did, but when 4 minutes of your 10 minute practice session are spent waiting for COMM, it defeats the purpose a bit.

I noticed pretty much all teams were using extremely long tethers on the practice field instead of the supplied wireless due to the time it took for the wireless to connect.

We used a tether partially for convenience, but mostly because we glue-gunned the radio’s power connector in place to make sure it doesn’t fall out. When our tether cable started failing sporadically, I wanted to use the practice field radio, but we just had to run out of glue sticks at that moment and so couldn’t change the radio.

we had comm problems our first match, then CAN network problems our 3rd and 4th, (sat dead on the field) then missed our 5th match while changing over to pwm.

I think the regional consistently ran more than 30 minutes ahead. I remember walking in on friday around 11:30, and everyone had dispersed for lunch already. I didn’t get to watch any qualifiers, but got the satisfaction of knowing the field guys were on top of everything.

EDIT: I found that we gave out a lot of wireless adaptors on saturday at spare parts, does this indicate possible comm problems or were the adaptors just prone to failure?

2185 had no problems with our comm systems on the field but we did have some problems at the practice field.

team 781 didnt have any comm problems, but we did constantly get stuck in a loop during an autonomous, which meant we couldnt do anything until we rebooted the robot from the driver station, we were then fully operational.

Team 1503 only once had communication problems at Waterloo, but that was our fault due to our radio power cable failing.

Otherwise, communications were smooth sailing all weekend.


A few teams (771, 843 & 1503) re-WPA’d their adapters during the elimination rounds. Though I don’t believe the root causes were identified, that was done as a precautionary measure.

772 had communication issues which appeared to be with the robot itself.

There were no major delays due to FMS problems.

(And regarding the schedule being ahead: actually, it was just set up with generous breaks—the Friday schedule ended pretty early, as did the qualification rounds on Saturday. This was presumably to avoid getting into trouble if the field did act up.)

At the best point, before the Friday lunch break, FMS was reporting that we were running 20 minutes ahead. I don’t believe that there was any point during the qualification schedule (which was on an 8-minute cycle) where we were behind.

One measure that the field/inspection team took that helped greatly was swapping out the few teams who were using the newer WET610N radios with WGA600Ns from spare parts, since not only do the newer radios take longer to sync up to the field, they have to do so before any of the old radios can be powered on (otherwise, the old ones lose their connection once the new ones link up).

Credit also should go to the FTA, Sean O’Grady, and the FTAA, Scott Kennedy, for quickly diagnosing on-field problems and making sure all teams were connected properly to the field before matches were started.

Hey guys,

We aren’t 100% sure at this point but it seems we lost communications at Waterloo likely due to a power spike in the robot or something along those lines causing our gaming adapter to reset itself and not link to the field. After the second eliminations match we noticed a burning smell and realized that our back left Jaguar and its corresponding CIM were much hotter than usual and far hotter than the other three Jags and CIMs on the bot. We suspect that we either had a short somewhere, although we haven’t located any, or we may have just stressed our drivetrain system beyond its limits - maybe we should have just toned down the physical play a little bit? :rolleyes:

And again, very sorry for the entire situation in the eliminations teams 610 and 1535. I won’t bother typing it all out because you know what I’m talking about anyway.

I’m just as puzzled as you are. Are you sure the power cord to the gaming adapter wasn’t loose, that the connection between the cRIO and gaming adapter is good, and that the your robot battery was fully charged? The adapter reboots itself if the voltage gets low enough.

And again, very sorry for the entire situation in the eliminations teams 610 and 1535. I won’t bother typing it all out because you know what I’m talking about anyway.

It’s OK. You had a good robot, and we were very proud to be picked by you. Congrats on getting the rookie all-star award, and hope you do well in Atlanta!

Thanks also to 1535. Congratulations to 2056, 1114, and 298; your alliance was unbeatable, and 2056 & 1114 have a great chance of doing well in the world championships.

Yea, I tried powering the robot on and jostling the gaming adapter’s power cable on either end and it didn’t shut down even temporarily, and the ethernet cable between gaming adapter and cRIO seemed solid as well. The battery started off at around 12.4V, which is generally how high our chargers get them, before the second match IIRC so it wasn’t a dead battery.

EDIT: Oh yea, we did notice our voltage dropping incredibly low under load though - as in from 12V to 8V just from driving forward at full speed with our compressor and vacuum both not running. It was enough to significantly dim our RSL. So we suspect that we probably damaged a CIM by overstressing it with how many times we would have stalled it, and it’s drawing too much current.

I think you’ve solved it. The bridge reboots when the voltage drops below 5.5 V; the cRIO reboots when it drops below 4.5 V. What could have happened was: a) the motors draw a lot of current even when not stalled, dropping voltage to 8 V, b) the motors stalled, c) the compressor/vacuum drew even more current, dropping voltage still further, and d) a CIM got damaged, lowering the battery’s voltage below 5.5V and causing the bridge to reboot.

Yea, I wasn’t at yesterday’s meeting to troubleshoot everything, but today I started tearing apart the Toughbox and removing the CIMs from it. Running the one that overheated on its own outside of a Toughbox, we noticed that it makes a bit of a clicking noise and appears to run slower (we haven’t measured this so it might be just an illusion).

We have a new issue though, which is in this thread: http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?p=945153

Yea, that’s basically the solution we’ve come up with. We have a new issue though, which is in this thread: http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?p=945153