2008 Build Season Update: Competitions

This year, Rockford Robotics went to two competitions: The Midwest Regional in Chicago and the Wisconsin Regional in Milwaukee. In Chicago, we were able to make it into the finals, but we didn’t move up much further. We did discover many problems with the current iteration of our Robot, the RoboTalon. Basically, our robot worked effectively, but it was really slow. Our challenge for the next competition was to keep our reliability, but to enhance our speed. We were able to do this by changing a spool on our claw, adding a wheel to the top of our claw to quickly pull in trackballs, and changing the motor that we used to lift the trackballs up to the overpass. We also were able to add some basic autonomous programming to help get more points during the hybrid mode. Because of these large speed boosts, we rechristened the robot, the “TurboTalon.” Due to the modifications, it took us longer to get the robot functioning correctly during the competition. Despite this, we still performed much better in Milwaukee then we did in Chicago. We were able to lift balls faster, pull them into our claw faster, and move around the field with more ease. Unfortunately, we weren’t noticed as much in Milwaukee, and we didn’t make the finals. Overall, we greatly enjoyed the competition, and the opportunity to play with such great teams. We are also very grateful to our sponsors for making this all possible. Next year, we are going to better focus our marketing at the competitions to enhance our chances of doing even better.