We are behind!
Our prototype mechanisms took longer to assemble than expected but in our defense there’s a lot more moving parts with this years robot compared to last. No seriously, there’s a lot of moving parts … we’re already concerned for weight.
It seems that every year we tell ourselves at the beginning of build that this will finally be the year that we can be under the weight limit. It starts off with a vision, then a slight possibility, and when we’re inevitably over, we start looking for opportunities to cut weight. This year the realization was earlier than usual.
As we finish assembling the prototype robot, we’re aiming to complete our real robot CAD by early next week. As you can see from the week 2 pictures of our robot CAD, we continue to iterate our design throughout the season. We’re never going to get it right the first time, but the earlier our first iteration is finished, the more time we have to make improvements. Fail faster!
Other teams might give themselves more time before constructing their robots, but we think one of the best ways to get a competitive edge is to build our robot quicker. This way, we can allocate more time for programming and practice. Even if it comes at the expense of some functionality, there’s a lot of benefit to getting your robots done early. Our great friends, Team 610: Crescent Robotics, are probably the best example of this. It might be hard to believe, but 610 doesn’t build a practice robot. They build their robots as quickly as possible and use their remaining time to maximize driver practice opportunities. Over the last 6 years, 610 has won 5 of their first regional/district competitions in a season because their robots and drivers are finely tuned for competition before they even play their first match of the season. In Steamworks (2017), their excellent driving was a large factor in them being possibly the best gear cycler in the world. They consistently build specialized robots that excel in a few specific tasks- and they have won more events than most teams that try to tackle everything (1241 included).
Other than the steady prototyping grind, this week has been quite the roller coaster. First, team Update 02 came out and our robot became (kind of) illegal, but then team Update 03 came out and our robot became really illegal. According to some recent Q&A posts, we can make our robot comply with the new G6 rule using software, so that’s nice. Make sure to read those team updates and Q&A as best you can.
And if you ever have a question on this years rules or anything else FRC related, you can get a quick response from the call center (just open up the little red tab at the bottom corner of the page)! Team 3132 along with a bunch of other FRC teams like 125, 503, 971 and ourselves make sure the call center is up and running 24/7 for your questions!