Goals: Finish the Innovate Award and make progress on the robot
Things we did/Why we did it: Tweak and reorganize the film and sound effects for a more enjoyable video. Worked on the funnels, intake and hanging
Problems: Funnels were out of dimension (again)
Results: Objective completed: Finished the video, finished prototype of the hanging system, applied linkage to stabilize the intake
Misc. Notes: We submitted our entries and registered for the excellence award, design award, and innovate award
Future Plans: Work on getting the funnels into dimension, finish hanging system/ make a more legit version, rubber band the intake, rewire for reliability purposes, modularize the rubberbands
For the final meeting for the innovate award, the member with the best media knowledge worked on the video solo to make edits the best to his ability. While this occurred, we worked on the funnels, intake, and hanging system without crippling the funnels so we can refilm if needed.
For the innovate award video, our biggest issue was syncing the audio with the video. However, before we could tackle this, we had to clean up our transitions. At some places, transitions were jerky and awkward, so we placed with pacing on the video to get the result we wanted. For example, sometimes the video would cut off too early, leaving a weird black flash. To fix this, we just re-spaced and played with the video speed. Once the footage was complete, we worked on linking the audio. Our biggest mistake was that the audio came out soft. So either our speaker wasn’t speaking load enough, or the microphone was registered too low. Because of this, the sound waves were tiny, and we were forced to zoom into the timeline to find vocals, which took a lot of time. Once the video was synced, we focused on a bunch of small details. We started shaping the background music to add more style to the video and support the narration and footage. We also shaped the sound effects to be less violent when unnecessary and more dramatic when needed.
For the robot, we found that the funnels were out of dimension again. We always assumed it was in dimension once we made a change. The main reason why the robot is out of dimension is because our funnels are angling in while storing. This angle cuts into the .5” of tolerance we have by hitting the drivetrain early, which then brings us out of dimension. So for a large part of the meeting, we played with standoffs we dub, the plate pilings to manually angle the plate. Eventually, we got a ratio which makes the plates come inward, however, we realized that the plates started to hit a brace we have on the drivetrain, rather than the drivetrain itself. We want to bend the brace inward, but we ran out of time. In addition to this, we also attached a linkage similar to a scissor lift or a jack. We first took a 10 hole bar and two 8 hole bars to prototype what length we need. We took the 8 hole bars and made it overlap until it formed a new bar 10 holes long. We then mounted the linkage onto two points on the lift and intake to help stabilize the system. With this, we found out we could use slightly longer bars. We then cut scrap metal and re-bent scrap 12 hole metal into a straight bar. We then formed to linkages, connected by locknuts and attached it from the intake and arm. We tested to see how well it stabilize the intake, and it does help a bit with wobbling, but not much. We then attached a standoff to see if this would increase results, but not much happened. We were going to attach rubberbands so it helps keep the angle of the intake, but we ran out of time. For the last section in mechanics, we touched on the hanging system. We cut a piece of lexan into a D shape to guide the rotation of the hanging system and drilled holes. However, getting that curved shape took most of the time.
Goals: Make progress on the hanging system, get some driver practice, work on the funnels, tweak the code to keep the arm steady
Things we did/Why we did it: Attached rubber bands to the linkage support on the intake to maintain the angle. Finished custom guides, mounting bar, and elongated the hanging system.
Problems: The zip ties of the rubber bands prevented the lift from going down all the way. We can’t find standoffs. The prongs of our right intake motor broke
Results: The hanging system was almost completed, the intake was reinforced
Misc. Notes: N/A
Future Plans: Work on autonomous, finish hanging system,
Today, we worked on the intake system, hanging system, code, and driver practice.
Shortly into driver practice, we noticed that the roller on the right was not functioning. After closer inspection, we saw that the pins were broken off into the motor. We hope that the new 393 motors will arrive in time before worlds so we can increase the speed of the intake. Despite this, we did a slightly different driver practice to increase our driver’s dexterity. Since the rest of the team was working on the garage sale, the team had to compress the driver routine into a smaller area. We arranged 4 bucky balls into a square and made our driver loop through the sides. While we were arranging the field, our programmer explained how to activate preset heights and de-activate the heights in case of a malfunction, however we noticed that the top height was jerky. We realized that with the top height, too much corrective power was used, so the lift would overshoot the position, causing the next statement in code to trigger, and repeat, causing a continuous up and down jerk.
Since the funnels were still out of dimension, we slowly added spacers onto the plates until the plates lied flat against the drivetrain. Currently, the funnels do not store flat, so the plates were out of dimension
Additionally, we mirrored the lexan crest for the right side of the hanging system. Fabricating the crest was simple. We drew a D on a piece of lexan with a gear as a guide and took a jigsaw and cut the plastic. We then compared it to the gear and marked the piece again, and slowly grinded it to an appropriate shape using a metal file. We placed a damaged gear against the lexan and drilled through the holes for a precise fit.
Goals: Finish the Hanging System
Things we did/Why we did it: Lengthened the storage to mount the hanging system, reposition the elastic on the linkage support attached to the intake to strengthen the system, attached string to the hanging system, applied a lock to stay in hanging position
Problems: Dimensional issues with the hanging system, the linkage support couldn’t support expansion for the hanging system.
Results: Fell short of the goal. The system was mechanically complete,
Misc. Notes: The hanging system makes the robot too tall to pass over the barrier.
Future Plans: Work on autonomous, finish hanging system
Today, the vex team focused entirely on the hanging system. However, while this was occurring, the sister teams were preparing for a garage sale tomorrow.
The team split into two groups again. One group focused on creating a mount, and the second group worked on the hanging system itself. The mounting group repositioned the rubber bands to allow the linkage support to rest lower into the robot. Before, zip ties were preventing the linkage from closing, so we moved the rubber bands down, where less torque is created. Despite adding the weight of additional game pieces, the intake would still keep its angle. From there we added a 5 hole piece of channel to the storage system to act as a mounting bar for the hanging system. This was reinforced with 4 lock plates. We had to play with the screw positioning to make it compatible with the supporting linkage however.
While this was going on, the second group created a second cresent for the hanging system because we lost the mirrored copy we made last time. We followed the same instructions as before, so we were able to do it within 30 minutes. While this was going on, other members worked on mounting the hanging system to a 12.5 inch rail. This was an acceptable length to distance the hanging system. However, due to miscommunication with the first group, we mounted the rail upsidedown. We reversed the system and combined the hanging systems
After the system was mounted, we merged into a single group. We checked for dimensions and found out we were an inch out, and we realized we’ll have conflictions with our intake deployment. We remounted the hanging system an inch back, and we realized that we could rest the hanging bars on our tower rollers. With this change, we were in dimension both lengthwise and height wise, and we could avoid expansion conflictions with the rubberbands on the tower rollers assuming we remove catching from the hanging hooks. We brainstormed and decided to apply lexan shields to prevent conflictions. We then cut a long piece of string, similarly to 4080A, and tied it from the hanging system to the lift. Using the excess however, we tensioned the string until the hanging bars would fly up. When they did fly up, we wrapped it around a standoff tightly, then tied it to another point on the drivetrain. Through tuning, we got the hanging system to reach 41” high. We then tested the system by manually lifting the arm. At first, the hanging bars did not raise, so we added additional tension to the string. After this, the system worked. We then tried it with the robot, and found out the lift would not raise. Because of this, we removed the hanging system to see if it was a torque problem. After removing it, we confirmed the issue, so we placed the hanging system onto the intake (without screwing it on) and slowly added rubberbands. We kept on raising the lift until the system could pick up the hanging system with relative ease. We then mounted the Hanging system again, and the lift could raise. We then noticed that the hanging system would not deploy because the linkage support was not strong enough to support the pulling force necessary to deploy the hanging system. Cautious of our time, we moved on to more critical issues. After inspecting the robot again, we realized that the hanging system rests on our cortex guard. Not only does that pose a risk on our cortex, it also indicated that the hanging system would hit the barrier. We were not able to find a solution to this yet. We moved on for now, and tested the hanging systems stall torque. Unfortunately, the torque was too low to deadlift the robot. So we applied a similar lock to 4080A. Because our robot tilts forwards, we made the lock made of channel and 2 screws latch onto a brace on our drivetrain, rather than the linkage itself. We then tested the system, and it works when the robot is angled slightly, however, the lock also catches when the robot is driving normally.
Innovate Award Video
This is our innovate award submission for the Vex World Championship. Please Like and Comment!!
On Saturday, we had a garage sale at our high school. From this sale, we made about $1400 to go towards worlds!!