Author Archive

Design, Manufacturing, Part Procurement, Crate Building & Field Setup Progress

DESIGN

The design is coming along and is almost finalized.  The roller assembly is completely finalized and several small details need to be ironed out elsewhere on the robot.

MANUFACTURING

The manufacturing team worked hard today to produce several lathe parts including the drivetrain shifter shafts, the drivetrain shifter shaft spacers and the rear axles (which needed encoder holes drilled in them).  The CNC team did plate work today, making the drivetrain piston mount plates and starting on the kicker plates.

PART PROCUREMENT

The [hopefully] last batch of parts from McMaster has been ordered, giving us the parts to complete our rollers.  Two AndyMark orders have also arrived, allowing us to proceed on modifying the roller sprockets for transportation to 968.

PRACTICE FIELD SET-UP

Today, the lab contained a large group of students intent on completing important field setup tasks.  The side borders have been setup and the towers have been placed in their final position.  Some of the bumps are laid out but we are still waiting on carpet from FIRST.

CRATE BUILDING

The crate building team worked hard today to attach the last remaining side (the bottom) to the metal frame using wood screws.  Several vinyl stickers were also cut and applied to the crate.

Manufacturing & Design Progress

MANUFACTURING

The manufacturing team has been working hard to produce a myriad of parts.  The CNC has been running to finish the Dogs and start on parts for the Kicker.  The lathe has been working to produce all of the shafts and spacers needed in the kicker.

DESIGN

The design team has been working hard to design the roller system, the final major robot system to be designed.  The plates will be sent out for waterjet cutting at BAE systems tomorrow.  The CAD predicts the robot weight at about 110 lbs, but does not include certain items such as pneumatic tubing, fittings and all wiring.

Front Roller Design

Front Roller Design

We have robots.

After receiving our frames very late last night, we began wiring today.  We mounted all of the electronics and ran the 4 gauge primary power wires.

Primary Power Wires

We then proceeded to run wires for the Victor 884 speed controllers.  After several separate configurations, the most popular involves running each Victor power wire independently and not zip-tying them together at all.

Victor 884 Power Wires

Besides working on the frames, the manufacturing department continued to lathe a myriad of spacers and standoffs for the kicker and drive gearboxes.  The CNC was working hard all day to cut dog ridges into our two separate dog gears and the dog lock plate.

A large group of students also worked hard all day on 254’s crate, ending with painting it.

Painted Crate Side Panels

Progress

MANUFACTURING

The manufacturing team has been working hard to complete parts for the drivebase.  After completing gears and sprockets, we have moved onto the construction of the shifting dogs for both the drivetrain and the kicker winch.

DESIGN

The design team has been working to finalize a myriad of parts so that manufacture can begin.  The plates for the kicker winch and arm have been finalized, and will begin being waterjet at BAE Systems tomorrow after the material is delivered.  Design on the rollers is continuing, implementing the Clutch that we have purchased from McMaster-Carr.

Roller Prototyping Progress

Today, we continued prototyping dual roller systems.  We worked hard to emulate the drawings we had, but still found minimal success with the belt-driven systems.  The faster the rollers were moving, the better the results.  However, if the rollers were moving too fast, the window motors would stall and be damaged.

At the end of the evening, we strapped a Dewalt 3 Speed Drill onto the robot.  With the shifter on middle or high speed and the clutch set very low, we were able to obtain and hold the ball extremely well.  Videos of this system at work are below.

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions
open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

Manufacturing and Prototyping Progress

MANUFACTURING

Today, construction on the tensioner cams was completed.

PROTOTYPING

Today we did extensive prototyping with vacuums.  We continued to work with the two-stage impeller assembly hooked up to 2 fisher price motors.  The impellers are currently running with a 1:1 reduction off of the fisher price motors.  We hooked it up to a 4″ funnel which we mounted on the front of the 2009 drivebase.

The vaccum seems to work much better than any roller systems we have found.  It maintains good suction on the ball.  The only potential issue is getting the ball, which may be able to be solved with adequate driver practice.

2-Stage Vaccum Impeller Assembly

2-Stage Vaccum Impeller Assembly

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

Design, Manufacturing and Prototyping Progress

DESIGN

Today, the design team worked to finalize the drivetrain.  The baseplate will be sent out to be cut by Mike D at NASA Kennedy’s waterjet shop first thing tomorrow morning.

MANUFACTURING

The CNC was running all day to cut all of the drivetrain tensioner cams.  They will be clear anodized.

A large group of students scotch brited wheels so that they are ready to be delivered to the anodize shop.  They will be delivered, along with the gearbox spacers and bearing housings, to the anodize shop tomorrow.

Polished Wheels

Towers of wheels after being polished, awaiting their trip to the anodize shop.

PROTOTYPING

Today, we continued to prototype Ball Retention Mechanisms.  We tested several different types of rollers and shafts on the balls with mixed results.  Several students and mentors also worked on modifying a 2 stage vaccum impeller to work with 2 FP motors.  More testing will occur tomorrow

Also, we were a little worried that the robot with a thick baseplate underneath wouldn’t make it over the ramp.  We decided to put a piece of polycarbonate on the bottom of the robot and test just to make sure.  The robot went over the ramp just fine, as demonstrated in the videos below.

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

open source video, online video platform, video streaming, video solutions

Drivebase with Electronics Board Design

Drivebase (Isometric View)

Drivebase (Isometric View)

Drivebase (Top View)

Drivebase (Top View)

Drivebase (Section View)

Drivebase (Section View)

CAD Progress

Today, the CAD team continued to work on the drivebase frame.  The back bar for hanging was scrapped, out of concern that there would not be ample room between the bar and the bumpers for an alliance partner to get a hook in.  We extended the base plate to the very back of the frame and started to lay out electronics.  We are starting to think about what our ball handling mechanism will look like, and how to design the electronics to stay within the constraints that the ball handler gives us.

Layout A (Top View)

Layout A (Top View)

Layout A (Isometric View)

Layout A (Isometric View)

Layout B (Top View)

Layout B (Top View)

Layout B (Isometric View)

Layout B (Isometric View)

Drivebase Design & Manufacturing Progress

At the Cheesy Poof lab today, several objectives were accomplished.  The gearbox design was finalized.  The drivebase design moved forward, and the basic frame is set for it.  It features a large tube on the back for alliance partners to hang their robots from for bonus points.  The electronics board will mount between two square tubes.

Drivebase frame. Features a large tube on the back for alliance members to hang on.

The manufacturing team continued on the manufacturing of the Bearing Blocks.  They are about 1/2 done with the 2nd operations on all 140 bearing blocks, and will finish tomorrow.  A group of students cut metal stock for the wheels, on which machining will begin tomorrow.