Looking for some guidance on a smart motor issue. We have a team whose robot is big and geared up to go fast, but the stress being put on the two drive-train smart motors when stopping/starting suddenly is causing the internal gears to slip/click. Has anyone else experienced this and solved it, aside from reducing the gearing and slowing the robot down? Maybe through programmed acceleration/deceleration, adding motors to the drive-train to distribute the stress, or some other kind of mechanical adjustment that simulates braking or otherwise eases the momentum force being applied to the gears when going from forward to reverse, or vice versa, suddenly? Just looking for a general direction for the team members to explore before they turn the motors into $20 paperweights.
Have you adjusted the speed and torque of the motors through programming?
They don’t want to reduce the overall speed through programming, because they want it to go fast. Perhaps there is a way to program it in a way that simulates braking when changing motor directions? So that the motors don’t go from 100% forward to 100% reverse, but rather some kind of gradual slowdown, even if it’s just milliseconds. I’m guessing it’s possible but am curious if anyone has ever tried it to solve this problem.
They have been able to reduce/eliminate the slippage by manually being more gradual on the joysticks, but that takes a lot of concentration, and they’d rather not have to think about it in the heat of a timed match.
You can definitely limit acceleration. Some of my teams have done it to improve accuracy but we’ve never experienced internal gear slippage so we’ve not done it to solve that particular problem.
There are several ways to do it. You can create a function to ramp up power based on measured time, or just save the previous power value and limit the next value to some small delta from that before inputting into the drive command.
Our programmers are meeting tonight so I’ll ask them to investigate something along those lines. They could benefit from improved accuracy anyway.