Based on the nature of the game, we decided that the most effective strategy was to hurdle as many balls as possible, and to control which balls were on the overpass at the end of the game, as these were worth 12 points each. We chose to create a robot with a large front “talon” that would grasp the ball, and elevate it to the height of the overpass. The talon was attached to a cable powered elevator system made out of 80/20 stock. We would mount this to a chassis with two central powered wheels and four surrounding castors. This would yield an easy 0° turn radius. It turned out that this orientation made the robot spin too easily, but we were able to control it fairly well with two joysticks. Most of the non-kit parts were all manufacture by the students at our build site, TechWorks. We also extensively used carbon fiber from another sponsor ACI. This material gives plenty of strength while also keeping weight down, which is important when you have a 120 pound weight limit. Many times, this material has kept the robot together where other pieces have failed. We finished the RoboTalon with about a day to spare for practice and shipped it.
- 2007 Build Season Update: Final/Elimination Rounds
- 2008 Build Season Update: Competitions