High School Robotics Build

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  • twistsol
    Veteran Member
    • Dec 2002
    • 2913
    • Cottage Grove, MN, USA.
    • Ridgid R4512, 2x ShopSmith Mark V 520, 1951 Shopsmith 10ER

    High School Robotics Build

    Until we moved, I hosted the high school robotics team in my home shop to build the field elements that the robots have to traverse or interact with throughout the competition. I just finished the last couple of Saturdays in the high school woodshop doing the builds this year. These are only used for practice, and in the competitions, everything is made from aluminum and steel. The robots need to be able to perform various tasks to score points while also blocking their opponents robots.

    The school has a new wood shop teacher who actually understands that the entire shop isn't their personal domain. As a side note, I got to use one of the two 5hp Sawstop saws and it is really a sweet machine.

    Shown below is what we built in two days with kids that had experience anywhere from never having been to that end of the building and not being able to read a tape measure to a 15 year old kid who pretty much grew up in a cabinet shop.

    The first two pictures below are both over 8 feet high and we had to modify the design so the functional elements the robots interact with remain within 1/8" of the design, but it also has to be assembled and disassembled multiple times to get it in and out of standard doors.

    The 150 pound robot needs to be able to climb onto the chain and stuff a rubber ring into the trap door on this one. It only counts if no part of the robot is in contact with the ground. There are extra points awarded if a human player throws a ring onto the post on top within 10 seconds of the robot placing the ring.

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    The feature below the robot has to be able to throw rings through a slot under the hood to score points This part of the robot is mostly working and they were able to hit nearly 100% up against the rail, but not so much when they were any more than a couple of feet away. This is one of the highest scoring elements so we built this first last weekend.

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    This next one the robot just needs to be able to throw or place a ring through the hole. It is about 5' high in total and didn't require any modifications for portability

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    This last one there are a total of 6 across the entire playing field and this is where the rings are dispensed from randomly during play. For testing, we just have a team member dropping the rings into the field manually. The robot has to locate and pickup the rings that are dropped onto the field, but they have to be fast because they can only be in possession of one ring at a time.

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    I also witnessed a dozen large pizzas vanish in less than ten minutes.
    An ethical man knows the right thing to do.
    A moral man does it.
    Internet Fact Checker
    • Dec 2002
    • 21149
    • Katy, TX, USA.
    • BT3000 vintage 1999

    Pizza = universal fuel for robotiers, code hackers and engineers and teams of any kind.

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    Loring in Katy, TX USA
    If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
    BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions


    • Nick Keenan
      Established Member
      • Apr 2004
      • 445
      • washington, dc, USA.

      Do the robots do that all autonomously, or is there a human driver?


      • twistsol
        twistsol commented
        Editing a comment
        I'm not sure about the rules this year, but in years past, the robots would start in autonomous mode for a few minutes at the beginning of the round and then a human driver would take over.
    • Promen
      Handtools only
      • Jan 2024
      • 1

      Thank you for sharing it and reminding us of the power of mentorship, hands-on learning, and good old-fashioned ingenuity.