2017 Build Week 6 Thoughts

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on this blog.  HYPE has had an interesting build season thus far,  and I’m both excited and extremely nervous for this coming season. 

This is about the point in the season where I begin questioning every decision we’ve made the whole season.  Should we be as ambitious in our design as we are? Are we not ambitious enough? Every little mechanical fault or wiring issue makes me regret everything,  but when you look at what the team has really accomplished so far,  I’m proud of where we are. 

We had an ambitious set of priorities,  and we have a practice robot that is mechanically capable of most of them and a competition robot that is more than halfway done. 

We had some students on the team step up and deliver great mechanisms,  and a big redesign of one of the robot’s central mechanisms this past weekend,  but we’re on track to have the robot shooting and placing gears this weekend.  

My concerns now are three major things:

  1. Weight.  We’re going to roughly weigh the robot today using someone’s home scale,  but this robot feels like it’s going to be close.  And we have yet to add one major,  important feature that could weigh a decent amount,  depending on how we decide to do it. 
  2. Autonomous. We wanted to give our programmers more time with the real robot,  but it looks like they’re going to have 2 days tops to tune our autonomous routines to the real robot,  and then the rest of the work they’re going to have to do on the practice robot. 
  3. Consistently shooting.  As is right now,  our shooter on the practice robot is fairly accurate. But when we have to replace wheels and tape and it stands up to the rigors of an FRC season,  will it remain as accurate as it is? Additionally, can we get more accurate than we are? 

I’m sure some teams are way behind where we are,  and some are way ahead. But every day I’m surprised by how this team can make exceptional mechanisms without any major machinery or resources.  

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