Time left in build season:

~-Read this!- Announcements:~

-+-Fold for Benson Robotics!! - For no particular reason, we've started a folding@home team. Go to the site to learn more, and if you decide to install it, enter 158067 for "team number" in the control options.
-+-The new sections of the 2009 FRC Competition Manual are available here.
-+-If you were unable to attend a Kickoff, NASA has the video available online here.

Saturday, March 7, 2009


In celebration of all you have done towards the success of Benson Robotic Club, FRC Team 2951 successful competition at the Oregon Regional competition, and the great memories generated from a successful season at Benson...the wife and I are having PIZZA for dinner tonight. I was serious when I told you all how proud I was of all you had done at the conclusion of the competition. Time to look forward to another year and build season.

Monday, January 26, 2009

During last week we were able to get the robot running, although its 12.75 to 1 gearing meant it was very slow roaming the halls. This was a great help during the pep assembly on Friday were we got about 2 minutes, which doesn't sound like much but shows that the school is willing to work with us. We announced a naming competition for the team.  The guidelines will be announced soon, but we have stated that the person who gets the best name will win $20. We ordered some extra parts, new gears, battery cables, and chain tensioners. I went over to Franklin to get help from our mentors with programming.  Unlike us, they us labview, but with their help and a few phone calls back to Benson, the robot's default code was reloaded and it moved again (it had stopped working because of a program downloading problem that is still unresolved).

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Progress as of week 1:

The robot is almost to the point of basic mobility.  The chassis has been built, control system mounted to a (temporary) wooden platform attached to the chassis, and all that is left is to attach the sprockets and hook up the chain.

We have been having some issues updating the firmware for the driver's station, in that none of the flash drives that we try work, but hopefully we will have that fixed by the time we need to put in a program.  If anyone has any solutions or ideas (although I don't know if anyone but Kevin and I actually check this site...), leave a comment on this post.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Build season has BEGUN.

For those who weren't able to attend kickoff on the 3rd, the video explaining this year's challenge is available here, as well as the kickoff '09 video (although the latter hasn't been uploaded yet).  A streaming version of the challenge video is also available here.

Basically, we will be meeting whenever possible, as we have only 6 weeks to build the robot (I've updated the site timer as well, as you've probably noticed).  One thing we need is more members.  We want to, if possible, include some people who have skill in accurately throwing things (ie basketball) for reasons that will be obvious once you watch the video.  We also need to make business cards for team members, so if anyone is in communications, or knows someone who is, it would be great to make the cards at Benson.

We had a meeting after school, mainly electronics work and brainstorming.  We've come up with some ideas for our robot strategy/design, as well as finishing a decent amount of wiring, and charging a battery.

Friday, December 12, 2008

We have MORE parts! And mentors!

We've found more great friends among the FRC teams in Franklin's Metal Beavers, team 1432.

Along with a large amount of parts that they've lent us for BunnyBot, they've offered to be our mentors, which will give us a head start at knowing what we're doing when January 3rd hits.  They've invited us to their committee meeting this Thursday, 6pm at the pizza place on 6250 SE Foster Road, to discuss terms of mentorship, establish what we need and what they expect from us, etc.

Not too much else to write today, other than we have only a week to finish our bunnybot, so we have to get as much as we can done in the time we have.  Luckily, we now have a decent amount of parts from helpful teams, and I think we can make it!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

We have parts!

Along with the basic frame we acquired some time ago, we now have most of the electronic parts we need for a basic robot.  Big thanks go to the Lincoln team for letting us borrow these, we'd have slim hope of being able to get a robot together in time otherwise!!
We also have some wheels, and as of now, one hundred 1/4-20 1/2" bolts, with matching nuts.  I picked these up on the way home from the hardware store near my house, and found that the prices at said store are fairly cheap, something we should keep in mind, as at least three members live quite close.
Because the scrimmage is next Friday, Kevin and I will be taking some extra time duting the free period we share to work on it.  If anyone else has a free 8th period they can join us.  If anyone has a different period free and would like to help, leave a comment on this post, or talk/send an email to Kevin, Zeno, or I.
Once we have a moving robot, it would be a good idea to drive it around during lunch, before school, etc, to raise awareness about the existance of our club!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Update on the state of things

- Kevin and I are working on making the relative-position control code work with the mecanum wheels, which should be done soon.

- The Lincoln High team has graciously offered us the use of a robot to build on for the bunny-bot challenge. This bot should be arriving relatively soon.

- The Cleveland-Franklin team may be able to lend us some spare motors and bits of metal. I'm still looking into this, and will post more info as it comes up.

Once we get a working robot, it would be a good idea to drive it around the school several times a week at times like lunch, before and after school, or in tech classes, to get people interested in the club.