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2016 Meeting Minutes

Minutes 26 Jan 2106

 

Prototyping - Pneumatic Wheeled Chassis - The robot was tested with the new wheel 

 

location and went over all the defenses easily. This will be the final configuration. Cat D 

 

Defense Mechanism - A rough demo prototype to show what an arm might look like was 

 

fabricated. Scaling Sub-system - The last prototype of the hook lifter was tested by 

 

operating by hand. Some improvements in the rigging were tried and seems to be 

 

working better. A winch to lift the robot was located and a Bag motor with a 10:1 

 

gearbox was prepared for testing.

 

Field Pieces - The detailed layout for the tower with Rung, Goals and Batter were 

 

completed.

 

Scouting - The scouting crew reported on their progress and continued to work toward 

 

the final product based on the current requirements.

 

Bumpers -The bumper rules were reviewed and initial thoughts about bumper locations 

 

were discussed.

 

Boulder Catcher/Shooter - Work began on the competition version of the boulder 

 

catcher

 

Parts - Ordered some aluminum stock - Tubes, bars, T beam and angle; snow blower 

 

mounting hubs; shaft encoders.

 

Lost & Found - A copper colored necklace with a 0.22 shell casing was lost recently at 

 

the shop. anyone who finds it, please return to Greg.

 

Agenda - 27 Jan 2016

 

The Channel Cats will meet on Wednesday, 27 Jan, from 6:30pm to 9:30pm at the 

 

MMTTC shop. The agenda items will include but not be limited by the following:

 

 Remove the gearboxes from the Pneumatic Wheeled chassis and trim the hex 

 

shafts

 

 Begin the mounting of the competition version of the battery and electronics

 

 Continue to build the competition version of the Boulder Catcher/Shooter and 

 

install on the Pneumatic Wheeled chassis.

 

 Continue the development and testing of the Tower Scaling function - Hook lifter, 

 

and winch

 

 Coordinate the installation of all robot equipment through the use of the CAD 

 

models 

 

 Continue the Auto Mode development by adding robot yaw control for defense 

 

crossing and for the second step of the mode where the robot turns toward and 

 

moves to the second waypoint on the field. Test over the Moat if possible. 

 

 Begin construction of the field piece which includes the Batter, Rung, Lower Goal 

 

and Upper Goal reflective tape

 

 Proceed with the design of  a Cat D defenses opening mechanism

 

 Continue with the scouting program development

 

 Continue to develop a plan for the bumper installation.

 

 Now that the robot chassis design seems to be in hand, begin the robot/wagon 

 

interface design and build

 

Ralph Lambert

Minutes 25 Jan 2016

 

Shop Area - After two years in our MMTTC shop it looks like we will be moving to a new 

 

facility sometime over the summer. Our current landlord, Troy Pohlman, sold 

 

Component Bar at the end of 2015.  The new owner is expanding his business and will 

 

be needed the space we now occupy. Our current lease runs out on 1 June 2016 so the 

 

Board of Directors is in search of a new shop area. If you think you have any leads for a 

 

new shop please let me know and the Board of Directors will follow up. Attached is a list 

 

of  requirements for the shop area that we put together when we were last looking for a 

 

new shop. None of the requirements are hard and fast but are general guidelines.

 

Prototyping - Boulder Catcher/Shooter - The shooter portion of the sub-system including 

 

mounting plates, motors and rollers were fabricated and tested on temporary jig. A roller 

 

spacing of 8.5 inches seems to work well with the 9.5 inch balls. Electronics - Encoders 

 

were mounted on the gearboxes in the pneumatic wheeled chassis and tested. 

 

Pneumatic Wheeled Chassis - With the arrival of the proper belts the front and back 

 

wheels were moved in 1 inch. This configuration needs to be tested. Category D 

 

Defenses Mechanism - Several ideas for a two part arm for use on the Sally Port and 

 

Drawbridge were discussed. Scaling Sub-system - The second prototype of the Hook 

 

Lifter was fabricated.

 

Field Pieces - The Tower with Rung and Goals design was worked on.

 

Scouting - The development of the scouting program based on a set of requirements 

 

continued.

 

Agenda - 26 Jan 2016

 

The Channel Cats will meet on Tuesday, 26 Jan, from 6:30pm to 9:30pm at the MMTTC 

 

shop. The agenda items will include but not be limited by the following:

 

 Continue to build the competition version of the Boulder Catcher/Shooter and 

 

install on the Pneumatic Wheeled chassis.

 

 Continue the development and testing of the Tower Scaling function - this is 

 

pretty far behind schedule and a primary feature of our approach

 

 Coordinate the installation of all robot equipment through the use of the CAD 

 

models

 

 Continue the Auto Mode development by adding robot yaw control for defense 

 

crossing and for the second step of the mode where the robot turns toward the 

 

second waypoint on the field. Test over the Moat if possible. 

 

 Begin construction of the field piece which includes the Batter, Rung, Lower Goal 

 

and Upper Goal reflective tape 

 

 Continue with the brainstorming and prototyping of mechanisms necessary to 

 

open the Sally Port and Drawbridge and begin prototyping if possible.

 

 Review scouting program requirements

 

 Begin to consider how the bumpers will be installed on the robot.

 

 Now that the robot chassis design seems to be in hand, begin the robot/wagon 

 

interface design and build

 

Ralph Lambert

Minutes - 21 Jan 2016

 

Prototyping - Boulder Cather/Shooter - Work began on building the next generation 

 

prototype. this model will be used to check performance to help with the integration with 

 

the rest of the robot. Electronics - We saw our first Magic Blue Smoke of the season but 

 

we recovered nicely. A second set of electronics was removed from last year's robot for 

 

use with our Pneumatic Wheeled prototype. Hard Wheeled Robot - The KOP chassis 

 

robot was used to test out some Lexan wedges on the front frame to help lift the robot 

 

up enough that the front wheels could get some traction on the various defenses. Our 

 

second version of wedges worked very well on several of the defenses. It looks like the 

 

AndyMark team has the same idea as seen in this video: 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KBmmf8ihDVQ. In case you don't know Andy Baker 

 

produces a short video three days per week. The one with the wedge front design 

 

shown on Andy's computer is in this episode: 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZzvKLKg8aE. Pneumatic Wheeled Robot - We did 

 

some dry fitting of the wheels and chassis to see if everything would fit in the allotted 

 

space. The only things we are really missing are the timing belts which are planned to 

 

be here on Monday. Navigation - We had a discussion about how the navigation 

 

features of the robot would work. The navX sensor is supposed to provide accurate 

 

robot attitudes (pitch, roll and yaw) but only gross field location (1 meter in 15 seconds). 

 

A field coordinate system would be set up and the navX would be initialized to the 

 

robot's starting location. In auto mode, the robot would be controlled to a constant 

 

heading as it moves over the defenses. When it is detected that the robot is in a level 

 

condition, which assumes that the robot is beyond the Outer Works, the navX position 

 

reading would be used to determine the yaw angle and the distance needed to reach a 

 

known location in front of a low goal. The robot would be controlled to the desired angle 

 

using the navX signal and the wheel encoders would be used to move the desired 

 

distance. Upon reaching the desired location in front of a low goal, the camera would be 

 

used to track the high goal reflective tape to determine the robot's distance to the tower 

 

and the angle to the tower goal. These data would be sued to guide the robot to the 

 

Batter in front of a low goal or possibly all the way to the goal.

 

Shirts Graphics Design - The shirt graphics which appears on the next page, seems to 

 

be finalized. If anyone has some suggestions for changes they need to be to Ethan  on 

 

22 Jan. We will vote on the design on Saturday then we will get the shirts made.

 

Controls Approach - Initial thoughts about what things need to be controlled on the robot 

 

and what to use to control those functions was generated and posted. Team review of 

 

this list is needed.

 

Bill of Materials - Work began on the Bill of 

 

Materials.

 

Robot Integration - We began to create a CAD 

 

drawing for the chassis and all the items we 

 

need to stuff into that space.

 

Field Pieces - An inventory of available materials 

 

was conducted to see if we need to purchase 

 

additional materials to build the planned field 

 

pieces.

 

Scouting - Since we did not hear any feedback 

 

regarding the list of characteristics to be included 

 

in the scouting program, it is assumed that is the 

 

final list and we should expect to see a demo of 

 

the program on Saturday.

 

The Plan - Our plan for he build season calls for us to have the final robot design in 

 

hand and prototype testing to be completed by the end of the day on Saturday so that 

 

we can begin to build the competition robot on Monday, 25 Jan, and have it completed 

 

before the end of week 4. We hope to have enough of the robot operational so that we 

 

can take advantage of the full field at Wentzville high school on 30 Jan. 

 

Agenda - 22 & 23 Jan 2016

 

The Channel Cats will meet on Friday, 22 Jan, from 6:30pm to 9:30pm and again on 

 

Saturday, 23 Jan, from 9am to 4pm at the MMTTC shop. The agenda will include, but 

 

not be limited by, the list of the following items:

 

 Continue with the development of the Boulder Catcher/Shooter

 

 Continue the development of the Tower Scaling function

 

 Continue the effort to integrate all the robot systems inside the robot frame via 

 

CAD

 

 Continue the development of the robot navigation function

 

 Begin the building of additional field pieces

 

 Proceed to build up the Pneumatic Wheeled chassis while incorporating lessons 

 

learned from the KOP chassis 

 

 Continue with the controls requirements definitions

 

 Explore the mechanisms needed to deal with the Sally Port and Drawbridge

 

 Demonstrate the scouting program

Minutes 22& 23 Jan 2016

 

Prototyping - Boudler Catcher/Shooter - The second prototype of the Catcher was built 

 

and tested with the recently completed Battrice field piece. It appears that the design 

 

works well under a variety of robot/Battrice alignments. The Shooter portion of the sub-

 

system was tested and it appears to work well. The Shooter rollers or whiskers were 

 

fabricated and motors and gear boxes added.  Electronics - The electronics from last 

 

year's robot was transferred to the pneumatic wheeled chassis for testing. Pneumatic 

 

Wheeled Robot - The chassis front was wedge cut and a wedged piece substituted for 

 

the KOP end cap. The wheeled were moved one inch farther from the centerline so we 

 

could timing belts we had on hand. The double drive pulley was built from on hand 

 

VexPro parts while waiting for the AndyMark parts. The control electronics was added to 

 

the chassis and the robot was driven over all the available defenses. The robot works 

 

well over the Low Bar, Moat, Rock Wall, Rough Terrain but has some issues with the 

 

Ramparts. The yaw axis control or lateral control of the robot is quit sensitive. 

 

Navigation - The navX sensor was installed on the Mecanum wheeled robot and tested. 

 

It looks like the attitudes from the sensor are good.  Auto mode control logic was tested 

 

to have the robot cross the Low Bar then stop on the other side of the defense based on 

 

attitude angles. That worked well. Category C Defenses - Work began on the use of 

 

some type arm to open the Sally Port and Drawbridge. 

 

Team Shirts - Ethan's design from the last newsletter was accepted and Joey has 

 

accepted the job of getting them printed. Still need to complete the design for the back 

 

of the shirt.

 

Robot Integration - The CAD model of the Pneumatic Wheeled robot chassis has been 

 

completed and the integration of all other components can proceed.

 

Field Pieces - The Battrice model was completed and used to test the Boulder 

 

Catcher/Shooter.

 

Scouting - Requirements were competed and various parts of the scouting program 

 

were under construction.

 

Agenda - 25 Jan 2016

 

The Channel Cats will meet on Monday, 25 Jan, from 6:30pm to 9:30pm at the MMTTC 

 

shop. The agenda items will include but not be limited by the following:

 

 Build the competition version of the boulder Catcher/Shooter and install on the 

 

pneumatic wheeled robot.

 

 Incorporate the sub-systems into the robot chassis CAD model to determine 

 

installation locations 

 

 Continue the Tower Scaling function development - Hook Lifter, Hook 

 

Attachment on Rung and Robot Lifting

 

 Continue the Auto Mode development by adding robot yaw control for defense 

 

crossing and for the second step of the mode where the robot turns toward the 

 

second waypoint on the field. Test over the Rough Terrain if possible.

 

 Begin construction of the field piece which includes the Batter, Rung, Lower Goal 

 

and Upper Goal reflective tape.

 

 Continue with the brainstorming and prototyping of mechanism necessary to 

 

open the Sally Port and Drawbridge.

 

 Review the scouting program requirements and program progress to date

 

 Make use of the newly arrived parts and belts as deemed necessary in the 

 

modification of the pneumatic wheeled chassis

 

 Begin to consider how the bumpers would be mounted on the robot

 

Ralph Lambert

Prototyping - Boulder Catcher/Shooter - More refined drawings of the catcher/shooter 

 

were developed. Electronics - The electronics bread board was attached to the KOP 

 

chassis. Found several motor controller issues and fixed them. May have a gearbox that 

 

needs to be examined. Pneumatic Wheeled Chassis - The extra long hex shafts for the 

 

six pneumatic wheeled chassis were fabricated and added to the gearboxes. The 

 

additional parts necessary to complete the pneumatic wheeled chassis are expected to 

 

be delivered on Monday. Hard Wheeled Robot - The KOP chassis with electronics was 

 

tested on the field with the various defenses. It drives very fast at the current weight. 

 

The chassis is too low to get over the defenses. We will have to modify the chassis with 

 

wedges and possibly remove all structure ahead of the drive wheels. A gearbox may 

 

also have to be examined due to rough running. Scaling Hook and Lifter - A new hook 

 

made of 1/4 inch aluminum was fabricated and fitted to the lifting mechanism. 

 

Field Pieces - Detailed planning for the building of the tower with rung, batter, low goal 

 

and high goal reflective tape as well as the Battrice was begun.

 

Scouting - An initial set of performance characteristics to be gathered during the 

 

competitions was assembled for further review. 

 

 Which defenses crossed and how many times?

 

 How many high goals and low goals scored - scored/attempts?

 

 How do they load Boulders - Embrasures, Battrice, Floor?

 

 Can scale tower?

 

 Preferred starting position?

 

 Auto mode - To defense, cross defense, score (high, low)?

 

 Human player performance?

 

Agenda - 21 Jan 2016

 

The Channel Cats will meet this Thursday from 6:30pm to 9:30pm at the MMTTC shop. 

 

The agenda items include:

 

 Mock up a life sized model of the Boulder Catcher/Shooter for interface to the 

 

robot or begin the modeling of the chassis for use in the integration of all 

 

equipment inside the robot.

 

 Continue the Tower Scaling subsystem development by looking at the power for 

 

the hook lifter and the robot lifting. Model the integration into the robot chassis.

 

 Explore the issues found during the initial testing of the KOP chassis and the 

 

electronics.

 

 Discuss the detailed plan for the auto mode navigation and goal targeting. 

 

 Locate the materials for the additional field pieces, make a list items to buy and 

 

begin construction with materials on hand.

 

 Proceed with the assembly of the Pneumatic Wheeled chassis with materials on 

 

hand and make anticipated chassis modification based on KOP chassis testing.

 

 Fabricate and install some prototype wedges on the front of the KOP chassis to 

 

see how they can improve the defenses crossing performance. 

 

 Explore other changes to the chassis to help in defense crossing wheel track 

 

width since several of the defenses are setup for a 24 inch wheel width.

 

 Start to define the control scheme and controllers for all the planned robot 

 

functions.

 

 Document the initial thoughts regarding the mechanisms needed to cross the 

 

Drawbridge and the Sally Port.

 

 Continue with scouting data collection plan by reviewing the current parameter 

 

list. Incorporate the parameters into the scouting program.

   

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