Last night at 11:59pm (just a few moments ago) we finished a long process of hard work over the course of 6 weeks. It consisted of long hours of planning, fundraising, and building. One of the biggest challenges is finding a suitable way to manage the restless nights and tiresome days of hard work at the shop. My favorite part of robotics is cutting, drilling, and screwing the wood at my dad’s shop when we were building the obstacles that the robot has to overcome. This year we decided to paint the obstacles for the showoff on March 2nd during the crock pot cook off when we will take out the freshly painted obstacles and the robot will interact with them for all to see.

The obstacles this year are a 5 foot scale with a 7 foot climb bar that the robot will have to put blocks in and climb, the hard part about the scale is that it is an inch or two taller at it’s highest position than our robot arm is allowed to be. The climb bar is also a slippery slope because the bar has just enough room for one robot to climb but not enough for the whole alliance. We had a good idea that was climbing very high then putting a bar on the back of our robot and then get a power up called levitate that will give us the points of one robot climbing. This will enable us to obtain the full 90 points for climbing which will be a big advantage.

Something we focused on greatly this year was picking up the power cubes efficiently and quickly so we can put them in either the scale, switch, or the return hole so we can get points quicker because of our limited time restraint.

We are pretty pleased with our robot.  We get better each year, always building on what we’ve learned and (mostly) not repeating mistakes.  There is much to do before our first competition, but with our robot bagged & tagged, and given that our first event is week four, our first task is going to be to take tomorrow evening off.