Skirting the Issue

posted Aug 21, 2011, 10:38 AM by Lewis Baumstark   [ updated Aug 21, 2011, 10:52 AM ]
I learned something yesterday.  I learned that wedge-bots are @#$%! irritating.  The robot teams I sponsor at UWG had a work-day and made amazing progress, especially given the competition is in two weeks.  Near the end, the three 3-pound bots that had mobility went head-to-head-to-head for some push-each-other-around-tests (i.e., no powered weapons in use).  The wedge gave upChukk and Twistys fits.  We simply had too much ground clearance -- the wedge would get under us and lift our wheels off the ground every time.

So I had a little weight budget left over and added a floating wedge/skirt to the backside of upChukk:


Mainly this is to eliminate ground clearance on what will now be the front of my bot (front? wha? see below...).  If it results in a little wedge-like behavior, well, too bad.

Yes, I realize this makes me one of the enemy now.  At least I have a fighting chance.

I also noticed, during out little bot rumble, that I had a heck of a time getting behind the wedge so I had a good place to use my spinner (had it been active, which it wasn't).  It was just too easy for them to keep the wedge pointed straight at me.  I don't think the spinner would have been much use head-on.

So my thinking now is to re-orient my controls and make the wedge-side of upChukk the front and the spinner side the rear.  Maybe I'll have more luck driving past my opponent and then quickly backing up to hit them with the spinner.  I doubt I'm a good enough driver to pull it off, but it's worth a try, at least when fighting those blankety-blank wedges.