Answered: Legality of starting tile alignment jigs

In order to ensure correct and consistent placement of the robot on the starting tile, our team is considering building an alignment jig. The proposed jig would align with the edges of the alliance starting tile and/or the field perimeter, and would in some way interface with some part of the robot such that the robot is set in the same starting position every time. The jig would be promptly removed, while the robot remains in its aligned position. The jig would be removed prior to match start and would not interface with any scoring objects in any way. Use of the jig would not add significantly to the time taken to place the robot on the starting tile.

As I see it, use of such a device would not violate any rules. <G11> says robots may not “intentionally detach parts during any Match, or leave mechanisms on the field,” however, the jig would not be used at all during the match, and in any case I don’t think the jig would qualify as a “part” or “mechanism” of the robot. Further, since (as I see it) the jig is not part of the robot, and <R5> mandates that “**Robots **may be built ONLY from Official Robot Components from the VEX Robotics Design System…”, starting tile placement jigs would not be restricted to “VEX-legal” materials, i.e., teams could cut jigs from (for example) corrugated cardboard.

So, two questions:

  1. Is the use of an alignment jig as detailed above allowed?
  2. If yes, is it required that such jigs be constructed from “VEX-legal” materials?

Thanks in advance!

  1. Yes, this is legal, provided you meet all the caveats stated above.
  2. No, since it is not a Robot part, it is not subject to the same construction restrictions.