Is it acceptable to have one builder work on more than one team?

From what I can tell, the rules do not prohibit one builder kid from working on more than one robot (in other words, serving as builder on more than one team). And I’ve seen a number of competitions where a kid will quickly build or re-build a robot for another team that is having huge troubles with their own robot. I’ve also heard of clubs working as giant Borg-like macro-organisms until a general robot design is settled and only then do they break up into separate teams, each team using the Borg’s basic design.

But I guess what I want to know is this: does this practice get frowned upon by the Vex community in general, by judges, etc?

I can see both sides of this issue, I think. On one hand, there are kids who love to build and who could easily crank out enough robots to supply a small army of teams in a single club. On the other hand, my instincts tell me that educational goals might best be served by having a “team” defined in such a way to force the non-builders to learn how to build. I suppose the same could be said for programmers, too.

I’m just curious how people feel about this issue.

I remember talking to someone at a competition that said that his job was to build all the arms in his 7 team program.

It’s completely legal. The definition of a team in the eyes of the rules is the three people who come up to the field for a match.

Morally, I think it’s fine, you’re not going to prevent it anyway, even if you do decide it should be illegal.

I think the real issue occurs when you have teams that have others build, program, and test the entire robot for them. The result is that the team just goes to competitions, hasn’t gained any experience, and probably has a decent enough robot to do some damage to the teams who did the whole process on their own.

Our program is based on that we are 1 team that supports 5 robots. We all work on every robot and by the end, everyone has worked on every robot. The people that worked more on one robot are the ones who drive it at a competition. We also all share the same costom competitation template which makes editing code on any robot easy because they are all in the exact same format. Because we run out program this way, we won the Teamwork award at worlds last year. So to answer your question it is acceptable and even a good idea to have people work on multiple robots.

Also we coach each other because we normally do not have enough people to support all 5 of our robots. If we do not have a coach we grab someone as we go up and they would coach for that match. Everyone knows the strengths and weaknesses of every robot, so everyone is capable of driving or coaching a robot at a moments notice.

We have three travel bots, all members build on all three at one point throughout the year. Makes it easier to cover when someone is sick or gone for some reason.

Acceptable:
If there is a group of students who work on four robots, and they call themselves four teams, I don’t have any problems with that. And no one seems to care when programmers do it.

Judging:
As long as all the students know about the design process of that robot, I don’t see any issues. The judges are expecting the team to know about that robot.

Education:
-Have non-builders work with a builder on a module.
-Have non-builders mirror a module. (Builder makes left side, non builder mirrors it for right side.)
-Encourage questions

536C, CyberPirates, JoeTPR, and anyone else who is similarly situated:

If you guys are one team building multiple robots, do you have one robot that you focus on ensuring is top quality (great CAD, design notebook, p. skills, etc.) and work on the others with less vigor. By less vigor, I don’t mean leave them behind, but rather perhaps not a design notebook or a decent programming skills. I suppose what I’m asking is, do you guys ensure every robot has equal capability to win all the awards or do you focus attention of the “metagame” elements on one of your robots?

I am not situated in a multiple-robot group, as much as I wish I was. :wink:
I was adding my opinion. :slight_smile:

But these were some questions I have often wondered about…

Honestly, as a member of a team that works on my teams robot, it sort of makes me mad. First of all, I know of some schools who have kids on teams that have build other teams robot and now the kids who did not build their own robot are going to worlds. It just irks me. Also, I have a person on my team who sometimes will get distracted and work on other team’s robots, So my school was at a skills only competition. During the competition, there was a team from my school that only had one member there. So rather then Adam coaching and letting this kid drive (they’re a pushbot with one remote) he drove and the kid actually on the team coached. I was the only team from my school that made it to state from winning anything which we did twice, we had two teams go for skills scores. But the thing is, one of these teams that went for skills teams DIDNT EVEN DRIVE THEIR OWN ROBOT TO GET THE SCORE. Sorry for the huge paragraph, it just really irks me. That is my opinion. :mad:

Even though we all work on each others robots, people tend to focus more on one robot than another. These people would then do the notebook, CAD, etc for it, but others would help also. I know that I have helped to the CAD, notebook, and skills for most of our teams, but I would put a greater emphesis on the robot that I would be driving and building.
It is a constant question I ask that if I should be doing the work on the robot that I am most involved in or put time into the other robots.

Sort of interesting what I see here.

So in HS when I did robotics, we sort of branched off into little groups. Programmers focused on programming (me), builders focused on building, and we are supposed to be in communication and plan for things throughout. Never really had dual-talented people in my club. Of course if you took a little longer to build or took extra time to build during my time you were likely going to be teased, and not likely to compete due to our build deadlines.

So I’ve seen teams with one person working on multiple robots, it wasn’t a thing where I’m from. And not a thing on my college team now.

Also another awkard thing about working on multiple teams is when a team needs an autonomous program and you are playing them in the next elimination match. You have to decide if you want your school to succeed, or the robot you put the most effort into to win. When doing this, I have had the people on my alliance get mad at me for helping my school because it could cause us to lose.

Personally I just prefer to lay hands on the robot I designed. It is totally legal and acceptable to help, but I would rather just be in control of my own business and respect others’. It is okay to give suggestions, but when it comes to the real decision or building I prefer to step out of the project I am not in charge of.