I did, but I’ve completely rebuilt it several times now. It’s much better now–able to pick up cubes in any orientation now and can score on a 7-high skyrise. 185A also has a very good 3-cube needle. More than 3 cubes on a needle is extremely hard to do, and, in my opinion, isn’t worth it. A 3-cube capacity is optimal.
I may have been misleading–I can cap the 7th skyrise with a cube, but I’m about 1.5 inches short of dropping 3 cubes straight onto it. It does it on a 6-high skyrise easily. I’ve made a few modifications to the base of the robot to get those last couple inches out of the lift, but it won’t be ready by this next competition; sorry you won’t be able to see it done. I’ve gone through the same process of gaining a few inches out of the lift before, so I’m confident this won’t be too hard to do. All in all, with a few more hours of practice, scoring with the needle should be extremely fast.
Sorry to go on about my own robot. When designing a needle for cubes, the act of picking up should not require any activation of pneumatics–it should be passive to be efficient and reserve air pressure. Only when dropping cubes on posts should a pneumatic be activated. Passive releases are inconsistent and require more precision, using up valuable time. I would also recommend a linear lift when using a needle–having all your cubes at the front of the robot changes the center of mass significantly.
+1 on the linear lift, although it can be done with a non-linear one (I’ve tried multiple times), it is significantly faster and easier with a linear lift for the driver.
Pneumatics are one way of powering a needle, although so far all of my needles have used motors or a servo to power them, which is quite nice however fiddly to get right. I would definitely recommend using a motor or servo if you have spare ports in the cortex, and are willing to spend time perfecting it.
2 capacity needles are so much easier, however 3 cube capacity has significant advantages if you can make it reliable, which I haven’t seen… yet.