December 29 Meeting

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Because of Christmas and Mr. Nelson’s travel schedule, this was the first time we could meet after attending  the December 10 Smithville Qualifier.

Quite a bit of progress has been made on the robot, however. A double decker structure was developed to keep the drive and control modules from the original prototype, but adding a plywood hinged shelf for the cap ball scissor lifter.

The Mecanum drive continues to work well, although we have had some curving trajectories because the left front motor seems to be running slower than the rest. All motors are in RUN_USING_ENCODER mode and all have the same speed value. We also have learned that the AndyMark NeveRest 20 motors we have been using have a weak front shaft bearing and wear out quickly as wheel drives. We complained to AndyMark and they graciously agreed to give us 4 new 40:1 gearboxes at no charge.

We have also had some trouble with screws loosening, especially motor mounts and setscrews. We have begun using Locktite Blue to eliminate this issue.

Mr. Nelson presented a mathematical analysis of the requirements for the particle shooter to successfully hit the target. We will need a spinning wheel to achieve the 200 inches/sec velocity needed. We are now way behind in getting a working particle shooter developed and may need to drop it from the plan.