question from a person just starting out

Hi my name is alex, i just ordered my 1st vex robot design kit and i should get in like 3 days,and im a beginner of all that is robot buliding and im really looking forward to learning and building my 1st robot, and i was wondering if anyone has a few websites they know for beginner like my self with puting together a robot with the vex system,or is there a forum area on the site that i missed? any suggestions would be greatly appericated, thanks alex!

The starter kit comes with a manual that will get you started in building and controlling the square bot. From there you can add a grabber, thrower, etc. Once you have the squarebot built, check the forum gallery for robot images.

Good luck


its always fun to build bots from the competition, even if you’re not competing

Welcome to Vex, Alex! I suspect you will get very much enjoyment out of your kit and probably learn a few things along the way :slight_smile:

You will also become frustrated at times, because things won’t line-up exactly right, or you’ll realize you need to move a whole collection of parts down one bolt-hole, etc. Just hang in there and remind yourself that this is the learning part.

Start simple and work your way up. As has been suggested, start with the squarebot that is described in detail in the Inventer’s Guide that comes with the kit. After that, you experiment in any way that seems interesting to you, using the squarebot as a basic starting point. You’ll quickly get the hang of it and move beyond the squarebot.

Things I’d recommend, in no particular order:

  1. Buy some of the plastic bearing pop rivets (276-2215). I was skeptical when I first saw Vexplorer using these, but I am now a believer. They are cheap and can make experimenting and prototyping MUCH faster. Once you are happy with the design, you can replace them with screws/nuts if you need the bearing to be locked-in tighter.

  2. Consider getting a chain kit as one of your first upgrades. It is probably one of the best value upgrades since it enables whole new design options. The advanced gear kit is a close second, but you’ll probably want some additional metal to make full use of that kit.

  3. Spend some time studying the robot pictures in the gallery. I’ve learned lots of handy builder tricks that way.

  4. When starting out, don’t be overly ambitious. Start small and experiment by changing one or two things at a time. You can be successful just diving into a big complicated project, but you’ll wind up learning lots of stuff the hard way, and that is less fun.

  5. Don’t be afraid to modify the parts. This is one of the things I like most about the Vex system: they expect you to use a hacksaw on the parts (well, the metal ones anyway). When I started, I tried really hard to just use the shapes as-is and found that very limiting. Once I allowed myself to “ruin” parts by cutting into them, I discovered I could do some amazing things with Vex. Of course, think things through before you fire up the plasma cutter, but I’ve found multiple uses for nearly every custom part I’ve made.

Best of luck, and please post back with any questions or suggestions. In a few months, you might be the one giving out advice here :wink:


  • Dean

true but i recommend keeping spares of the original, just my $0.02

I would recommend the Tank Tread Kit. When you get more comfortable wit Vex you should get the EasyC programming kit, its a bunch of fun.

BTW i recommend the tri-pack kit if you decide to get more metal and hardware

Hey guys thinks for the info, ill sell u exactlly what i got, i got a sweet deal from a guy on ebay , everything is brand new and unopened except like program kit,but discs are used and not registered, i paid 425.00$ for all this…

Starter Design Kit
Vex Power Pack
Vex Gear Kit
Vex Tank Tread Kit
Vex Sprocket and Chain Kit
Vex Omni Directional Wheel Kit
Vex Limit Switch Kit
Vex Limit Switch Kit
Light Sensor Kit
Light Sensor Kit
Vex Line Tracking Kit
Vex Optical Shaft Encoder Kit
Vex Ultrasonic Range Finder

So im pretty sure i got a ******* deal and im debating on geting the Pneumatics Kit,but might i probably should just wait for that cuz it looks pretty advance, i should be geting my stuff this wensday and im very excitied, right now im puting together a boe bot and its very fun and cool, if anyone has msn messanger id like to chat and make friends with you guys on the forum and if i ever need a to ask a question when i building my robot , that would be cool, thanks guys!

you need the programming kit for the optical encoders and other sensors

I just got my vex kit in two days ago (I also got mine off of E-bay at a great price :wink: ) and have successfully put together the square bot. The instructions were great and easy to follow even for a beginner at robotics. The square bot was simple and it only took me about 5 hours to have the thing running, and that’s after messing up about ten times on the frame assembly. The square bot is definitely the place to start and from there the instruction guide can help you build more advanced bots. I hope you have as much fun as I did :smiley: .

I forgot the mention it , but the programming kit came with my deal of everything else i got for 400ish bucks

wow thats pretty sweet

OMG. I am speachless. you really got all that for that price?

yes i did, the guy i bought it from said it woulda cost me 700+$ but he was willing to let it all go for 425.00$ which im proud to say i got all today in the mail via ups, all brand new, and im very excited and going to start building my robot today!!!

Bran new?

Thats a good deal, i just spent $900 stocking up on my vex stuff this year, i wish i had found that ebay deal.

And you know what the funny thing is, i still dont have a lot of parts that i wanted. Like the pneumatics, more motors, more servos, ect…

Ya all brand new, makes me wonder if this stuff was hott out not now that i think about it lol, liek he had two sets for sell and i was biding on one, on ebay but lost the bid at the end, then next day the seller emailed me, said he had another set, brand new for sell and then he told me about the other accessories and said he would sell them all to me for 400.00 bucks,so i guess i got real lucky! ya thos pneumonics look freaking awsome tho, cant wait to start with that stuff:D