5 weeks left

Wow, it’s already the end of week one.

Normally, this would be a statement that incites panic. But this year, I feel different. It’s only been a week and I feel like we’ve accomplished so much! We have a functioning shooter/feeder mounted onto a practice base, several plans for award submissions, and lots of other great things going on.

When I walked into the lab this morning, I found a bunch of kids standing around working with a huge circular plywood piece and a leaf blower. The circular plywood wasn’t out of the ordinary as we are planning a circular base. But… a leaf blower? Well, it was actually to build a hover craft.

That’s right. No wheels. A hovercraft.

Got’cha. (As Priyank would say. And I have to mention Priyank because he doesn’t want to be mentioned in the blog.) It was not for the robot. It was for a 5th grader’s science fair project. Pretty cool and hopefully a future Ninjineer.

But anyway, the rest of the day went great. We built a circular base with a 34″ diameter and a 24″ square inside. Then we mounted the shooter onto the base with a 1/2″ rod.

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As Cody is demonstrating, the robot could be it’s own cart when flipped upside down.

We did a lot of shooting practice with this today, and added a pneumatic piston to pop the ball into the shooter wheels. Check that out in this short video:

In other news, Gooby put together a camera mount with servos. He also worked more on the can crushing device with solar panels from Vish. The panels can provide about 80% power, but not enough for the compressor. Hopefully we can get that out during lunches next week at school, and we’ll post some pictures here.

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And that’s about all for today. It was a great day! Saturdays in the shop are always great, as we tend to get a lot done and have a lot of fun. The season is progressing along well, and at the end of week one, I’m extremely impressed with what everyone has done. Hopefully we’ll have a working prototype and a lot more to write about by this time next week.

-Brian

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