Moving on up!

Guess what guess what guess what?!?!?

The awards due this week are (drumroll please) done! (well except the pictures :P). But seriously, this is a fantastic step forward for the team. Even if we don’t win a single award, the simple process of creating and submitting an entry lays invaluable foundations for future efforts- and basically puts us on the map. Thus far, we’ve been a very one-sided team, and this diversification has required monumental effort from the entire team- PR, team management, and otherwise- and I cannot thank the team enough for the work they’ve put in. Often, these essays seem insurmountable, but we’ve gritted our teeth and just done it, and it feels fabulous.


But enough of that! We’re getting really close to the end, so everyone seems a little bit frantic. However, our first swerve wheel is done! The wheel has been attached to the machined parts and everything works, so yay!! Things are beginning to click and the end seems in sight…


This also means we’re on full time duty all week, as in 8 PM every day- so you’ll be seeing a LOT of CNC stories from Brian… (sorry XD)


Also, we’ve more or less completed bus and room assignments for the Orlando Regional! It’s on March 13-15 (SO CLOSE!!) and we’ll be sending out more information soon. Upper classmen, I’m sure anticipation for the incredible season ahead goes without saying, but freshman- brace yourselves because you’re never going to want to leave :D.


The Olympics!

This is a programmer in his natural environment:



This is a true mechanic:


The first picture shows Andrey working hard on swerve code, while watching the Olympics. We got to watch the live streams of a lot of different sports while we worked today, it was pretty great! Go USA! (Unless, you’re Andrey and you’re cheering for Russia…)

The next picture shows Cody pretty much making his own lathe. One of the custom shafts in the swerve called for a lock ring, so Cody popped the shaft into the chuck of the drill press and spun it at a low speed with a handsaw blade. Pretty awesome if you ask me. Here’s the finished product:



Swerve is moving along. I feel like that has been said in every post for the past two weeks. Oh well. We have everything CNCed for the prototype bot, and now I am working on some more finished products for the final robot. I’m not exactly sure what is holding up putting everything together. I believe that some belts are not in. We have about a week left to finish all of this, and I think it can happen. Some of modules stacked up:



We also have had a team working on mounting mecanum wheels, just in case the swerve doesn’t work out. This would be four mecanum wheels on nanotube gearboxes.


There was also progress on other parts of the robot, such as reinforcing the PVC tubing that helps us catch, and welding the uprights around the back end.



The robot is coming along nicely. It’ll look great in the end.


Amy, Sneha, and Mayuri made great progress on awards today! The executive summary is done. I’m really glad that we are making the effort to submit for awards this year.

Ricky and Andrey were also working hard on programming encoders.

And after all our hard work, Priyank and Robert accidentally emptied the vacuum before it reached the trash can.


Well, we have about a week left. There is a lot to be done, and I’m sure there will be many late nights, but we’ll make it. Good work everyone!






The Ultimate Programmer

I haven’t mentioned Ricky much in the blog, but I am today at his request. He solved the communication issues between the robot and the code (I actually never caught what the specific problem was)! Because of this great work we were able to practice shooting.



Here’s evidence of the concentrated programming effort.



Our practicing was also enabled by Cody, Michael, and Bri finishing up redoing the shooter axles on the prototype bot. We are now using custom machined rods with a key shaft. Before we had a simple all thread (with no key shaft) and the constant rotation of the gear wore the rod down in a really weird way that we didn’t even notice until taking apart.


Swerve is also progressing. Today I CNCed some of the side plates for the modules. I was able to do this with help from Stepan and Gene! They were able to monitor and maintain the machine while it was running.

Damian worked more on the Media & Technology Innovation Award by making some updates to the website. For example, check out our “Sponsors” page for a few little updates. Nothing major, but just things that give the website more completeness. Hopefully we can start working on the actual submission soon.

The other awards are also going well. Today most of the officers were interviewed for the Chairman’s video.