Elevated VEX Field - Can these risers support it?

I’m working on raising my VRC Field next year.

I have an idea for a field, and I think I can purchase theses to do it, along with some wood for a platform.

If I purchase say 9 of these, is there enough to support the weight of the field and robots?


1 Like

I think yes, but That’s a pricey proposition.
This team built one from 2×4 for under $300


1 Like


Where are the platforms?

Plenty of capacity, as long as you don’t pack your field with adults standing on it. Use at least 5/8 OSB or 3/4 MDF, and you might have to add a rim of 2x4 (or maybe 2x3) lumber around the edges to avoid sag around the perimeter. It looks like a nice compact solution.

1 Like

It looks like they use 4x8’ ply for the surface. You can see some of them at the far side of the field, trying to blend in with the gym floor. Very similar construction to the riser we have at our office.


If you look at the far side they are using plywood - which comes in 4’×8’ pieces.

Great - yeah I think I might be the only adult standing on this field. Well actually it’ll mostly be kids so we should be fine.

OK. I skimmed the picture too quickly to actually see that.

Well looking at their specs it can support up to 153 lbs/ft2

A 4x4 riser would therefore be able to support up to a 2448 lb load distributed evenly.

It’s probably going to be okay.

I have seen those platforms in use before (not for VEX, though) and they are very slick - very easy to setup and transport.

Do keep in mind that if you plan to just add your own plywood to the supports and not buy the platform designed to work with them, the rated specs don’t mean anything and won’t apply. The support holds the platforms at 9 points, but the actual platform is what provides the support/stiffness between those points. I don’t know exactly how the platforms are constructed, but they are more than just a sheet of plywood. They likely have some stiffeners and edge supports to maintain the stiffness. I am also pretty sure then have interlocks between adjacent panels.
If you are going to do your own surface, you might want to consider using full sheets of 4x8 material in two layers in a criss-crossing pattern and fastened together with possibly another stiffener around the perimeter as @kmmohn suggested. If you don’t I think you’ll see sag/warp between the supporting points.


We use these platforms currently with our VEX IQ Fields.

We fasten 4x8 sheets of 1/4" plywood to the fields and those we transport frequently.

This field I don’t intend to transport frequently as it will be hosted at our build space.

Our field riser uses 1/2" ply wood as the top surface and it spans 2 feet between supports and we don’t see major deflection.

Those risers would provide a supporting point every foot . The Stage surface available are about an inch thick so whatever you cook up should probably be approaching that thickness. I personally would lean towards 3/4" thick plywood since the commercially available stage surface has 4mm of “honey comb” which I’m interpreting as infill.

1 Like

As many have said, we use 1/2" plywood rimmed with 2x4, and one 2x4 across at the 4’ mark. We put feet every 2’ on the long side, but not on the short side. This gives us a ton of storage space under the platform. Had it for years with high schoolers all over it, no trouble.

We even took it apart to protect our windows during hurricane coming through, then put it back :slight_smile: