Rings getting stuck under drivebase

We have recently been having issues with the rings getting stuck under wheels, motors and chain of our drivebase - really slowing down/stopping the robot…
Which solutions have you guys come up with to solve this?

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Some people have used plastic, and bent it to go around the drive train, to block the rings.


The most important thing to do with rings is to stop them for getting under. Our team accomplished this by adding a “plow” to shove the rings out of the way. Our team has this on the front and the bake of our robot.

Another important thing is to make sure that if a ring does get under the robot, it doesn’t destroy your systems. Our team had a bar on the bottom of our chassis that rings could get stuck on. When this happened, our wheels were push off of the ground and we couldn’t move. By moving the bar to the top, now if a ring gets stuck under the drive, it just sits there and doesn’t push our wheels off of the ground.


Friendly reminder that this is a fantastic topic for your engineering notebook. I was speaking to one former coach at a competition over the weekend who observed how frequently robots got high-centered on rings, to the point where she was amazed that no one seemed to have considered it (she had asked to look at team EN’s at the end of the competition).


You could make the drive base taller to drive over rings and not have any be able to get stuck, though that would be difficult to pull off. I would recommend legal plastic sheets to cut and put around the base so that no rings could slip in. (This would only work if your robot can’t do wheelies, then rings would get stuck more.) However you solve this issue, good luck!


Do you guys think that this will have enough wheel clearance to not get stuck on rings?
It’s supposed to be a 360 rpm 3.25" 6 motor drive.

Also, yeah, I realize that it would be crazy high on friction. I wanted to design a drive with enough clearance, and realized that I could mesh 60 tooth gears like that, and designed this kind of for laughs. I wonder if It would work though…


A good rule of thumb is that rings are 1.67 inches tall, the platform has a 0.5 inch lip, if you wanna build a drive that can balance on the platform and deflect rings, give your drive a 1 inch or 1.25 inch clearance. That is of course if you wanna balance, if not you can make it as low as you want

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Another thing to try is putting in plastic or aluminum “side skirts” on the sides of the robot that nearly touch the field tiles. These should not interfere with platform mounting as long they don’t extend beyond your front and rear wheels.

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