Day 39

Today was tiring and frustrating. The day started off well, we retook the team pictures and did better this time, you know people looking at the camera and not making stupid hand signs. Simple stuff. The day went down hill after dinner.

A Cad student and a manufacturing student set off on assembly of the intake. I was helping over see assembly, both students are freshmen this year. This went mostly well, besides discovering that the secondary support plate is not symmetrical and we had it facing the wrong way, was hard to find that out. I created a card in my Trello “Todo better next year list” to make things that aren’t symmetrical very apparent. Assembly fell apart after dinner when I left them to continue assembly while I talked about driver and operator control scheme with programming. Apparently a 3d printed spacer didn’t fit on the shaft with the pullies, the hex hole was undersized. This one thing caused all forward progress to stop for the night… The rest of the intake could have continued to been assembled. We could have broached the 3D printed part, or used 1/2″ hex acetal spacers. The student leading assembly needs a bit more hand holding for now I guess.

Intake Progress

The programming / drive team controls discussion started off productive. We came up with a list of robot responsibilities, driver responsibilities, and operator responsibilities. It fell apart when a student who is in consideration for drive team took a hard stance on controls layout. Currently we don’t have a nice way to determine if we are at the fender for a close up shot vs trying to use the lime light to aim and just don’t see the vision target. The student took the position that the operator should always be watching the robot and setting the appropriate mode to shoot. This didn’t make sense to several other programmers including myself.

As drive coach my goal is to get the robot as controllable as possible by one person, the driver. The driver should be able to handle the repeated actions, such as in-taking a cargo, shooting cargo, and positioning the robot. If the driver has to communicate with the operator that introduces additional lag and a chance for miscommunication or error. The operator exists to do one off tasks, such as climbing, help debug, troubleshoot or tweak values during a match. If the operator has nothing to do, we have done our job well. We had to table the controls discussion as it was getting heated and it was already past the meeting end time. We will pick it up again tomorrow. I will lay out the decision matrix for the driver in both scenarios and hopefully we’ll be able to see path forward more clearly.

Manufacturing students continued to crank out the different parts required for the robot. The final CDS/Shooter plates were getting cut on the router. A mill piece was finished, and of course the lathes were full and shafts were being churned out. The wood frames for the bumpers were screwed together and glued.


I’d like to get the majority of the robot assembled by Saturday end of day, but I don’t think that will happen. The intake assembly went slow today, we have not started on climber assembly or CDS assembly. If we manage to make up some ground on Wednesday maybe Saturday will look more like a possibility. Bumper assembly should get done by Thursday at the latest, so that will free up some resources to help robot assembly.






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