Dumper Bot Intake

So there are already quite a few threads on intakes, but as far as I can tell, they all converge to talking about catapult-based intakes. I thought it would be interesting to have a discussion for dumper robots, where continuous intakes are viable and speed isn’t as important.

One thing is to store them in a way that’s space-efficient.

What about multi-star intake at a time? That can be a useful feature to have, so that you can grab up a huge clump all at once.

If your intake orients the stars, they will line up and nest a little bit. I’m still working on the orienting part.

Try an angled-prong forklift, that does the trick for us. Make the prongs more of a point at the front, and then you support the star in like 4 places, and as long as you don’t intake really powerfully, they land basically the same way.

So like a spatula coming off of the corner of the robot? I’m not sure what you mean by angled though.

Orienting’s a good idea, then you could grab them like a shish-kebab. You could have a sort of hallway for the stars to collect in and a single prong sticking out past it, to push on one of the upper legs to turn it.

Yes, the stars are strange shapes. But they do stack nicely. If you can hold enough stars; dumping them and overwhelming the other side would be a good strategy. A dump bot might be a really good idea. Or atleast, in theory.


I was about to post this then I saw you posted. This made me laugh more than it should have :smiley:

Sorry, I guess I wasn’t super clear. I meant ‘angled’ like the point of a spear. See the attached picture, where the yellow circles represent the prongs of the star from a cross section.

Haha thanks! :smiley:

Hm… Perhaps a basket isn’t the best way to go after all… If you could orient them the same way and then stack them somehow, maybe that would be better?

That’s fine! The picture helps a lot. Are you guys using a catapult, or do you have a dumper too? Can you intake multiple stars at once or intake while your drive is in constant motion?

Baskets don’t seem very space efficient because of the star shapes.

My question is, how would you integrate a system like this to also hold cubes?


Have you tried side rollers

That’s a good question… If you could score all of the stars in the far goal (using an extended drawbridge, you wouldn’t need cubes. That being said, I think that however space inefficient, if you could manage to layer objects (even randomly, so long as they’re on top of one another), a basket would be best.

I’ve tried using chain side rollers with stand-offs on them to grab the stars, since there’s no opposing flat surfaces on it. However, no matter how tight the chain was, the stand-offs were too floppy. That design might work if the stand offs on each roller were able to lock together somehow… Any ideas?

That reminds me of our Skyrise intake!

We solved it by using sets of 3 chain links for each standoff. You have the central standoff of each three be pretty long, and then you have two shorter ones surrounding it. Then, you entwine a rubber band between the three, which keeps the standoffs straighter while still allowing it to go around the end of the conveyor.

You could try having some metal under the chains.

They have a finger that they screw onto the belt. The standoffs are on the fingers. The fingers are also over some metal C Channel, so that the standoffs aren’t floppy. Tried it, works like a charm.

That’s a great idea! I’ll be sure to try it out tomorrow.

Another idea to try. I bet you could even widen the base piece of metal to make it even less wobbly.

Been thinking about them for a while, just tall and rubber-banded (think that is a word) intakes like last year, both sides able to swing in and out and sprung towards the inside (if that makes any sense).

I made a prototyle of this with those little green bendy things that everyone (well, almost everyone) used for tossup but we haven’t got our stars and cubes in yet. In should work in theory though if you space it 10.5 or so inches apart because then the sprockets and rubber bands should just kind of dig into the cube and since it’s rubber bands with those green things each side should only need to bend out about 2" for the star; unless the star gets oriented a different way because of the force being exerted on it. Which should still work though because if you take the longest line on the star where it’s 14" and turn it 90 degrees the star is still 10.5" (I think) which is why you space the intake that far apart in the beginning… Or you could make the intake swing in and out :stuck_out_tongue:

What are those? Do you mean the rubber links?

Yeah, we just call them the green bendy things :slight_smile:

I approve of the name ;). I just wasn’t sure of what they were.