Essentials To a Superior Roller Intake Design

What are key elements of an intake roller. I see in several videos robots that easily pick up cubes in several orientations and then I also see robots that struggle to pick up one single cube. There are a couple aspects I am a bit confused about right now. The first is how many flaps should an intake have? Some robots have them fairly spaced out, while others have them completely packed in and even some robots put two flaps next to each other, and even space those out. The next, what is the best way to suck up cubes in different orientations? Does the gear size do this well because several teams have one small gear chained to a bigger gear. Other important elements of an intake are tension, torque, speed, angle, space from the ground,


Strength an durability are huge. Rollers don’t work if they’re broken.

Compression is key. It doesn’t matter if you have a 20 cube capacity tray if you can’t push 20 cubes up your tray.

Torque. If there’s too much compression(makes friction), then your motors can burn out.

Flap Spacing: whatever floats your boat. Every different kind of roller intake uses different flap arrangements. Its really up to personal preference.

Note: the smaller a gear, the more stress it puts on each chain link, increasing the chances of breakage. Best size is probably a 36 tooth or 60 tooth.


So is a 36 or 60 tooth gear for my intakes better than the small to big gear in this picture? And also what do you think about the double flaps?

Your flaps look fine, and I think your sprockets are too.
I really cant tell, it’s all personal experience and preference. If your current setup doesnt show any trouble, then it should be fine

Make sure to have different gear sizes big to small connected by sprockets and you also need the intake to be flexible but not too flexible or else it won’t work
Overall it’s just about finding what works for your robot

Ahh okay, and this is goffy’s intake not mine

those are goofy’s

20 char

make sure intake paralell to tray

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Also allow the tray when stood up straight to push the intake outwards slightly so the intake doesn’t grip onto the block when backing out of corner

goofys robot is really good

What about the locking mech

Our robot is actually programmed to go into a mode when a button is pressed to make the intake reverse in the same speed as the drive going backward. It actually works very well.
Edit: our intake is always touching the cubes.