The challenge for this robot was Cascade Effect. Click on the video below for the challenge animation. This robot was specially designed to be able to fill all levels of tubes. In order to reach high places, we built a right angle scissor lift. We made it right angled for stability. The scissor lift ran on a ball screw that would touch a limit switch so the robot couldn't over extend and break. We used metal rods on an axle to pull in the balls. Then the balls would go into a carriage we printed to fit the balls. A prox sensor would then cause a spring would then spin around causing a metal stick to shoot the ball up. We used a dryer tube to control the balls on the way up to our hopper. The hopper was made of our t-shirt that year and a servo gate. It could hold up to 5 balls. While programming teleop, we programmed the ABXY buttons each to a different height for the scissor lift, for each of the 4 tubes.
Check out the 2014-2015 FTC challenge video
The challenge for this robot was Res-Q. Click on the video below to see the challenge. This robot was built specifically to climb the mountain and hang. After two months of testing random wheels to see what would best climb the churros, we concluded that tracks with rubber grips and boiled surgical tubing was the best material to use. We used Plexiglas as armor to cover our electronics in case our robot flipped over while climbing the mountain. Our arm was on two motors so it could move back and forth. The in and out was controlled by a lead screw. We used the arm to hang, release climbers, and score zip liners. When our robot flipped up at the end game, we taped signs to the bottom so people could have a good laugh. Our favorite one was a picture of spongebob and it said "Help! My driver doesn't have a license!" because at the time we were all 12 and 13.
Check out the 2015-2016 FTC challenge video
The challenge for this robot was Velocity Vortex. Click on the video below to see the challenge. This robot was built specially for shooting balls. This was this first year we tried mechanum wheels, for speed and agility. We used a spring to keep the "dog tongue" in the 18in box before the game. Then the "tongue" would flip out and become usable. After sucking up the balls, they would go into a cartridge so we could shoot multiple at a time. We used a cup we got at a razorback game as our holder. Then a specially designed and 3D printed CAM would spin and shoot the ball into the vortex. We used Plexiglas that was bent on both sides to change the beacons. All we had to do was drive next to it and it would change the color.
Check out the 2016-2017 FTC challenge video
The challenge for this robot was Relic Recovery. Click on the video below to see the challenge. This robot was built specially to complete EVERY task. We used mechanum drive again this year because of its versatility. We had clamps on a linear slide that would grip the glyph. That was also on a wrist that could turn 180 degrees in case we needed to switch colors. We used a color sensor on a stick to knock the correct color of ball of the platform. Our wrist was on a linear slide so we could stack up to 6 glyphs high. On the side of our robot was a claw on a linear slide. This linear slide could extend from the balance plate all the way to zone 3 to drop the relic, we could also balance on the stone with our arm still fully extended.
Check out the 2017-2018 FTC challenge video
The challenge for this robot was Rover Ruckus. Click on the video below to see the challenge.
This robot was designed to take the shortest path from point A to point B. We decided to make a ski lift on the hypotenuse of our robot. We used mechanum drive. We had two linear slide systems, one horizontal and one vertical. We used surgical tubing to transport the carriage. Half way through the season FIRST made a rule that a robot could not be in the crater and score so we scrapped this idea.
Earl the Giraffe
This robot was specially designed for rapid mineral transportation. As you might be able to see from the picture above, the robot looked like a giraffe when extended. For this, we kept the drive train but built a new chassis. We used a telescoping rod from lowes as our arm, to extend or re-track we used a tape measure. We used a 256:1 gear box to spin the arm about the axis. We used a lead screw and linear slides to hang. To pick up the balls, we used a mayonnaise jar from Walmart that we cut the end off. On one end was a rubber band to pick up the minerals but keep them in. On the other end was a servo gate so we could release them when over the lander.
Check out the 2018-2019 FTC challenge video