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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Organizing Cart

Hello! I am Mr. Bydlon and I am writing this post. I am the FIRST Robotics Team Lead Mentor. This is my second year in that position. I am a math teacher at Jefferson High School. I am incredibly excited about this coming competition year. I also can get long winded so I apologize for long blog posts.

My visions for this blog are:
  • A record of things we did and when we did them for future seasons
  • Keep sponsors and any interested parties involved
  • Something fun to remember
So there you have it, keep reading or check in whenever you want. I hope you enjoy.

One of the major talking points from people last year was starting the team earlier. Last year was a special case because I did not start being the advisor until late October. Anyway, to accomplish this goal for this year, we had a meeting a couple of weeks ago introducing the team and what the competition is about. We will do a post on this blog about that topic in the near future. At the end of that meeting, we got together and planned when our next meeting would be. We scheduled it for September 20 (this was yesterday which is most of what this post is about).

There were a lot of great things that happened yesterday. We divided up into two teams. Brandon, Derek, and Bryce tackled the insane robot cart and Jenna and Megan started organizing the robot room.

We built the robot cart last year after our build season was over. We did not plan very well. The cart was a behemoth. It was made of diamond plating and 2" thick pieces of 80/20 aluminum. It looked intimidating. The only problem was that it wouldn't fit through two doors at Williams Arena, where we always have our competition. This is a major problem. We had to take the robot off the cart and walk that through and then take the cart, turn it sideways, angle it through the doors, and put the robot back on. Frankly, it was an embarrassing spectacle for other teams to see. So the guys took the cart apart yesterday and went over to the Tech College and had them cut the pieces down so it would fit through the door. They plan to put it back together in the coming week. I was really impressed with their teamwork and the cool ideas they had.

Meanwhile, Jenna and Megan organized the robot room so it wasn't a big pile of stuff. After the competition last year, the motivation to clean and organize was very low. Thankfully, Jenna and Megan got rid of a bunch of boxes, organized the shelves, and just in general, made things look nice. We made a list of parts/tools to buy and had a bunch of good ideas for other projects to work on.

Our next official meeting will be October 3 which is also the first day that interested parties can start practicing for the driving contest.

Other dates on the horizon: October 26 is the driving contest and November 19 is the mini-competition in Prior Lake.

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