Climbing Stairs

So I need you guys to help me a bit with my homework :slight_smile:

Well not exactly, but I am curious and I figured maybe some of you guys have done this kind of thing before. For my college’s Intro to Engineering Design class, my group is tasked with building a Vex robot that needs to climb a few steps of stairs. The challenge is that these stairs are just tall enough (4 inches tall) and just small enough (about 4 inches deep) to make this a very tough challenge.

Got any ideas or experience? We’re not the best brainstormers, but I figured that before my group jumps headlong into our complex and difficult solution that maybe we should see if there’s a remarkably simple one no one’s bothered to point out yet.

Switchblade is even built in vex, but the full control system is likely beyond your skills at this point.

Google for robot stairs
has other interesting hits for general ideas:

Other general approaches:

  • use wheel-legs as large as the stairs, or other purely friction based solutions
  • use small wheels
  • use something smaller than vex wheel as a wheel, latex on spacer, etc
  • Use no wheels at all, some articulated floppying think like switchblade, where the key is to transfer the weight to next stair
  • use wheels mounted on wheels
  • use wheels mounted on collapsable stilts, so you lift the front ones
  • use a pullback and release spring and jump from stair to stair
  • use a flexible chassis and snake your way up

Be sure to cite all your sources of inspiration.

It sounds like an interesting assignment, are there other restrictions, like a restricted vex material list, size, weight, speed?

that robot is BEAST!!
and the balancing pid loop is just as cool!!!
wonder if we can do something of that sort with a vex micro controller… :stuck_out_tongue:

While the above posted solutions are very intricate and make for more dynamic robots, I suggest just putting on the all terrain wheels. You know, the ones that are grey crosses with rubber on the ends? These are just about the right size, and if you interlock them ,like this : X+ , then it should work perfectly. Please ask if my explaination is unclear.

Just saw this on JVN’s blog…

Petra Hartman built a stair climbing VEX bot named Bartholomew for her senior project at Lower Marion High School. She came to Downingtown Area Robotics on June 24 2009 to demonstrate Bartholomew.

The link will take you to some pictures of the robot.