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Monday, March 5, 2012

March-ing Along

Apologies for the lack of posts the past week. After six and a half weeks of INTENSE drilling, thinking, cutting, designing, and worrying, the team needed some time to catch back up. Quite a few developments from last week. The main ones being on our practice robot, Beckham (it will be able to play soccer), the flag, and the banner.

Beckham is moving right along. We decided to put our Mecanum wheels from last year on it. The main reason being they are pretty sweet. The Mecanum wheels allow us to strafe side to side as well as spin in place and drive forward and backward. It is pretty sweet to see in person. However, all of these cool things cannot happen without a little backlash. They are a painnnnn in the butt to put together. The wheels require new spacers along with drilling new holes for the axles. That doesn't mention the gear boxes... The Mecanums require the old style gear boxes. This wouldn't be so bad if we hadn't taken them apart before and scattered the pieces all over the shop. Oops! To maintain positive attitudes, the team looked at it like a puzzle. Fortunately, the puzzle got solved.

Another development for Beckham is the kicker. Ryan did some sweeeeet math to figure out how and where to mount the piston and leg. This mechanism is basically done. The only thing left to do is mount the back of the piston. The final parts for Beckham are programming, electrical board, pneumatics, and chains. Lots of work still to do before the Student Showcase at Discovery Middle School on March 15.

A couple of big PR developments were worked on this week as well. The banner was designed through a local company (Affordable Signs) and it looks AWESOME! Can't wait to see it in our pit area at 10,000 Lakes Regional March 29-31. The flag was also worked on. The logo is on and letters have been cut out. All that's left is sewing on the letters. Mascot team kept fiberglassing to reinforce Mechatron and make him be able to take on all comers.

The upcoming 2 weeks are busy for the team.

  • Wednesday - We are helping out Parker's Prairie with their week long celebration of robotics. Continuing to push the team's community outreach along with spending some time with kids.
  • Thursday - Parent meeting in Bydlon's room, 413, at 5:30pm. The main purpose is to distribute information about the team's trip to the U of M - Williams Arena for the 10,000 Lakes Regional. We will be staying in the same hotel across from the Mall of America. 
  • Saturday - Representatives from each Regional sub team are going to Duluth to scout and strategize at the Lake Superior Regional in Duluth. Van leaves at 5am. 
  • Thursday, March 15 - Student Showcase at Discovery Middle School starting at 4pm. We will have a booth and Beckham out to showcase STEM education and FIRST Robotics. 
Then the biggie - 10,000 Lakes Regional at Williams Arena on March 29-31. CANNOT WAIT!

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