Saturday, September 19, 2015

Combat Robot Class, the 2015 Campaign

Amidst much other doings, of various sorts, my annual middle school combat robotics class has been up and running for a week or two now.  It always fills quickly, because what middle school aged kid does not want a destructive robot, even if it is a mere three pounds in size?

I give my annual speech.  "No flame throwers, no hand grenades, no live animals" and put them to work.

Servos get hacked.  Wheels are cut out of pink styrofoam.  Ideas are hatched.  I was without my usual helper on the day I snapped a very few photos.....

This day our main job was making and attaching wheels.  We make these cuts with a hole saw.  Over the years you learn things.  Do this over a trash can.

 The attachment point between wheel and servo is a weak spot.  You need to shore it up.  Wood squares are for increased surface area.  The glue holds better.  You also screw the servo attachment directly into the wood.  This will hold.  Something else will break first.

Finished wheels, attached securely to servos.  Note the box.  Each kid needs one.  I used to tell them to bring one.  Then I noticed a big stack of empties in the hallway near where we meet.  Hey, you learn things after doing a class for fifteen years.

When kids have design ideas that I cannot immediately understand, I ask them to draw what they have in mind.  Some people are better at verbal communication. Others in graphic form.  This kid wants to build a three pound golum.  OK, we are working on ways to make it happen........

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