So we just finished our competition on Jan 7 and qualified for state. We saw at our competition how effective defense was and felt like our flywheel bot was good but could certainly be improved with more consistency. Before our competition, we had always had discussions about building a catapult, with its efficient scoring and good defense (6 motor drive). Our next two competitions are on the 28 and Feb 5. Is it worth completely rebuilding our robot, considering that we have qualified for state (which is March 11). Or should we stick with our current robot and try to improve it? Any advice is appreciated!
It’s up to you. Chances are, depending on your region and its overall competitiveness, if you won a tournament then you will do at least decent in states.
I’d analyze videos of your matches (or just your memories if videos are unavailable) and focus on areas where your robot underperformed (inconsistent shooting, issues turning rollers, drive too slow, etc) and decide if those are areas that can be fixed by tuning your old robot and do not require a full rebuild.
If you are set on a rebuild, I’d recommend you try to rebuild as fast as possible to maximize your driving and programming time. Make sure to look at plenty of resources for your new robot, especially if you’ve never attempted a catapult before, and cad beforehand.
The other option is to just make very few changes to your current design and spend all your time driving and programming, which, depending on the state of your current robot, may serve you better than a full rebuild.
Congrats on states, and good luck!
This is a good thing to include in your notebook! You can discuss the pros and cons of rebuilding with your team and put the results in your notebook.
We are in the process of rebuilding our robot too. We qualified for IL State with the design award last weekend, and our current bot will not be able to be saved to even come close in state. We are cadding a 6m drive flywheel bot with as minimalistic of a design as possible. Our last bot was not built in cad beforehand and was just a winter break substitute for the Jan 8th competition. If States is in early March, when should the robot build be done so we have time to code skills and practice?
My advice would be to stick with what you have, and make it better. Right now, you have experience with a flywheel, and could probably get it extremely good by the end of February. If you go catapalt, you will have to make a new code, auton, and learn how to build this new mechanism. Depending on how good your team is, it will take much longer. Worst case senario, you will not have a good enough robot for state. So, stick with what you have right now.
Thank you all for the advice! I will go talk to my team about it.
As others mentioned, improving on the flawed aspects in your current build might be a better use of your time. Even more, the value of extensive driving practice and time tuning autonomous likely outweighs any advantage you are hoping to gain with a rebuild. Spending time making a good long autonomous for skills requires a robot that is complete now.
Once you have a robot that can complete all the tasks of a game, driving and game strategy are at least half of what you need to win a match. A competent robot driven well is dramatically more competitive than an excellent robot driven poorly.
(Based on the dates you list, we might see each other on the 28th and march 11.)