2009 Build Season Update: Week 4 Activities

Week 4 has been filled with completing design and ordering parts. We are hoping to begin building the robot next week. As the design phase is almost complete, we will begin the cramming build stage and last minute design and welds/ work on the bot. Though this is somewhat insane, the team enjoys working out the kinks to design the best bot possible.

The conveyor system design has been completed, but some work still needs to be done on this system of the robot. The team has started proto-typing the ball infeed system to make sure the dimensions are correct for the balls to be sucked up into the conveyors. The hopper drawings and specific dimensions are being finished up, and ACI is working on building the floor for our hopper system. The team has also been working on the vision system on the bot, which will use a camera to look for the pink and green indicators on the trailers. With this camera the robot will be able to shoot automatically at the trailers. We are working on the bumpers, and will be sewing our team number on the side of them. The painting of our ship crate is done and our logo really stands out!

One big issue this week has been how to mount our turret system on the robot. The design of the turret has pretty much been completed and the finer details are being worked out. Though this system is one of the most complicated on the bot, we are actually using the rim of a plastic garbage can to mount the turret on to the top of the bot. The garbage can rim will be the base for our turret system.

One great thing that can take place during robotics is the helping spirit between teams. This week the Winnovation team from Winnebago is lending us a helping hand by giving/selling us belts for our conveyor system and urethane tubing. As another aspect of our team, we will be having try-outs for the positions of a driver, operator, and payload specialist. These people will be the field team at the competitions.

As week 4 wanes, the insanity is beginning to build, but the experience of a team of high-schoolers and mentors designing and building a robot in 6 weeks in incredibly worth it!