Okay, so I have been facing many scenarios where I’ve had to sand down the nylon spacers to make them fit. Instead of sanding them I would like to buy spacers with a smaller od to make it more convenient when building a robot. My question is whether buying spacers with a smaller od is legal.
Nope. Until the Q&A says so.
Ask this on the Q&A for an official answer
I’ve written this in another thread. In some cases you can buy commercially available washers of legal sizes that are exactly what you are looking for. But it’s pretty rare to find these more than 1/8" thick. Generally when you pass 1/8" thickness the name shifts from “washer” to “spacer,” and then it would have to be VEX equivalent.
Since, for the time being at least, your’e stuck with abrading standard spacers to the size you need, here’s a fast way to do it: Put a group of spacers on a long bolt or all-thread of the appropriate size, tighten down a nut to hold them in place, chuck up the end of the bolt/all-thead into a hand drill or drill press, and sand away. You can cut them down very quickly with sharp sandpaper, like garnet paper. But any abrasive paper will work. You can also use a file if you hold it at the correct angle and clean it frequently.
This works, but it is much better to use a dremel instead of a file or sandpaper on the other side. Have the dremel spinning at a decent speed and press it against the spacers on the spinning drill. Do this consistently and you’ll file them down in no time.