xbox 360 controller installation

i have looked around and ive seen this ‘chicklet’ device… is that the only to implement a xbox controller into the operator box?

and i also saw that only xbox360 controllers are supported? can someone clarify this?

As of last year’s rules, the USB chicklet was the only FIRST legal way of connecting any USB controller to the OI, short of hacking the thing to pieces and wiring straight to any pots that might’ve been inside the controller itself. The chicklet supports a small selection of USB joysticks, driving wheels, and, yes, Xbox controllers. The full list can be seen here.

We used the chicklet with a 360 controller last year with success. The only word of caution is that if the battery powering the chicklet starts to die, the USB controller sends erratic signals to the Operator Interface. We had a few close calls last year of our arm extending without hitting any buttons.

Keep fresh batteries in it!

i have a question for the teams that used a gaming controller.

my question is did your team get better response time with a gaming controller or a regular joy stick

Thanks for the tip about keeping the batteries fresh. We will be trying out the xbox controller this year. I’ll pass the advice along to the students.

See you at Chesapeake!

So can the combination of a chicklet + 360 controller be used to control a Vex receiver w/o tethering it?

I’d love to get rid of the clunky Vex transmitter.



I dont know exactly how the chicklet works, does it plug into the robot or the OI?? I have seen teams do this successfully, and am wondering how it works also. thanks

I’m sure Mike Copioli will get on here and give you a full rundown, but from what I’ve gathered from our use:

-Plugs into the FRC Operator Interface (not VEX, sorry)
-Supports a variety of USB controllers, joysticks, a Racing Wheel and a Mouse (full list here) including the Xbox 360 USB controller
-Requires power from a 7.2V backup battery in competition (separate from rest of controls)
-This requires a 7.2V backup battery and adapter (Both available at IFI)
-Can use 7.2V AC Adapter outside of competition to run. (Also available at IFI)

It connects to a joystick port on the OI. Its purpose is to allow a USB device to work with a system that was designed for “game port” joysticks.

where can they be purchased? because we were talking about doing this with a PS2 wireless controller or something of the sort, since the joysticks are becoming a bit of a bother. Thanks.


I doubt that you would be allowed to use the wireless controller with it they have a list on line at the link below as well the link leads you to the place to buy the chicklet

I wonder if you could use a Guitar Hero controller (for the 360 of course) as a robot control device. That’d be interesting. Plastic guitar solos to score! =D

Maybe until you wanted, I dunno, ANALOG INPUTS. I’d like to see you steer a robot with a whammy bar.

For some useful advice: the chicklet works better with a 9v battery. It also takes some careful documentation reading to initially calibrate.

left turn = press down whammy bar


problem solved

That is ABSOLUTELY correct. When our batteries were weak or died, our arm last year kept extending and snapped a joint. We had too many close calls, so be sure to either put limit switches on your robot functions this year and/or make sure newly charged batteries are powering it.

Jeepers $129.99 for the chicklet. We bought ours last year (2x) and they worked wonderfully until we invited 50 boyscouts who had the urge to “touch” the chickletsss. This was unfortunate due to static electricity fried the components. So if you decide to go this route, I HIGHLY, HIGHLY, recommend that you create some sort of covering for the chicket that is removable in order to re program them. Here’s a guide that one of our teammates used last year.


~Fondy Fire

I’ll post later a simple covering device with velcro that we used with polycarbonate. It did its job.

My team had a similar problem when the chicklet ran low on battery power except ours without even touching the controller shot off down the hall at full speed with us chasing it trying to shut it down.