Answered: Removing Springs from Clutches <R15>/<R5>

I am curious to know if it would be legal to remove the springs from inside the clutches, and use them in other applications. As they are part of a VEX part, I would say this is legal as per <R5>, but I was mainly curious if they interfered with <R15>

Under <R15>, I’m not sure if clutches are grouped with “motor modifications”.

So, do removing springs from the clutches violate any rule?

Thanks in advance
Elliot

This would not be legal, as this would be considered a violation of <R15>, as you pointed out.

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Hmm… OK.

Thanks Karthik!

You’re welcome!

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Sorry about reviving what should now be considered a dead thread, but I’ve talked to my team and they still had a few questions…

Clutches are not “Motors, extension cords, sensors, controllers, battery packs, reservoirs, solenoids, pistons or any other electrical component or pneumatics component of the VEX Robotics Design System” nor does it involve “Welding, soldering, brazing, gluing, or attaching”. I suppose what we’re asking is: how is this modifying a motor, if at all? Clutches are not even part of motors. Clutches are completely independent of motors, can be purchased independently, and are only associated with motors. To me, it would then be logical to conclude that modifying clutches is not at all like modifying motors and therefore would not violate <R15>.

Clutches should therefore be considered mechanical components, and it is legal to modify mechanical components. I have seen teams take the rollers or other small components off of omni or mecanum wheels to serve other purposes. Teams have inverted and messed with the traction wheels for intakes. I have seen some teams tear apart some of their gears to serve completely different applications.

In proper applications of springs, they do not violate <S1>, <G10>, <R15>, or <R5>. I have seen teams use springs in the past being used on competition robots without being disqualified or rejected during inspection. Some of the main applications include: suspension, transmission, or, in the case of this year, launchers. All of these would be safe applications of springs.

Also, the clutches are readily disassembled to have the springs to be removed, there’s no cutting or breaking involved. My teammate says he can do it with a fingernail.

Springs serve a vital component in component assembly-based engineering - they provide a great passive extension force that is unlike rubber bands, which provide a passive compression force. They are perfect compliments and am slightly confused as to why one is legal and not the other.

Finally, if springs from the clutches were to still be considered illegal, for what purpose are they illegal? Do they serve as a safety issue? I cannot imagine that they are any more dangerous that rubber bands, latex tubing, or any other mechanical part. Or am I missing something that is not obvious to me?

I suppose another way of asking this is: can you elaborate why it violates <R15>, or any other rule?

Sorry if any of this sounds rude, as it is somewhat difficult to be upfront and direct about what we’re asking without sometimes sounding slightly rude.

Thanks,

Elliot

Hi Elliot,

After reviewing with members of the Game Design Committee and VEX Engineering, we have decided to allow these types of modifications for VEX Toss Up.

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Thanks so much Karthik!

You’re welcome!

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