Simpler X-Drive Design

In my recent concept animation I used a much simpler X-Drive, that I have never seen used before…
Robot Concept - Team 81K

So I though I would make a separate thread for anyone seeking X-Drive designs and to get others opinions on weather this is a better X-Drive design/general thoughts…
Feel free to hole count on this one.

Or you can have the horizontal supports on top…

That is compared to the more traditional design…
Additionally mounting something above the wheel is very simple as the holes align both at 45 and strait on.

This seem like the ultimate X-Drive design.


Why couldn’t this drive be done with the usual 44 degree gussets? Wouldn’t the holes still line up while saving a bit of weight.

45 degree gussets wouldn’t work very well in this type of design. Also it’s a lot simpler and lighter to just have one screw rather than 4 screws and a gusset.


Has it been tested?

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While it may be simpler than more traditional X drive designs, it seems to lack in terms of structural integrity. For instance, each pod is realistically only mounted with two screws while the end points of the pods aren’t really held together. The “traditional” X drive image that you have linked is also not the most ideal in terms of building an X. A much more robust alternative would be something similar to a design that is based on 5225A’s Tower Takeover X-Drive but without the custom Lexan gussets:
This style has much stronger mounting points for the wheel hubs that are much more spread out and would prevent any misalignment in the C-channels.

(Note, this design does require you to drill holes in the channels to get proper mounting holes for supports, but in the end it will help increase the rigidity of the base and keep it as stable as possible)


I built the wheel mount thing when making the design and it seemed plenty strong enough. Just because it has 2 screws doesn’t mean its weak. (also you can extend it and have a standoff or c-channel on the other end.) As for the rest it, it’s just 2 c-channels connected, it can be as strong as you’d like.

Yeah, I was just using it as an example as that type of thing is what you typically see.

The one in picture looks nice, but it’s kindof overkill when it comes to structural strength. It’s also clearly designed to mount something specific. I’m not saying it isn’t strong, but it’s basically diminishing return. I like to keep things simple and the weight reduction on mine is unbeatable. You have like more than 10 screws and standoffs and countless custom cut pieces per wheel. Against 4 screws and a standoff.


An X drive suffers from not having the already traditional mounting points of a tank drive. By adding properly space horizontal and vertical mounts for any subsystem, it will be easier when designing anything to go on top of it.

If you’re trying to reduce weight on a base, then you should expect deformations over time and potential issues with misalignment due to the defensive nature of the game. Weight reduction on a base really shouldn’t be a key aspect to focus on. Instead, focusing on rigidity to counteract defense should be a higher priority.


I’m not arguing against that.

I was just trying to go for simple but still strong design. The “weight reduction” was just a side effect, but that part was partly a joke.

I will build the design test how strong it is and if it is strong enough I would much rather build a simple design like this. And no one is saying you can’t add c-channels like that onto it for easier mounting.

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A base isn’t the best place to be reducing weight, especially when it sacrifices structural integrity. The cad @vexreally sent has a very good design. Remember that the gussets are made of steel and connect the wheels across the perimeter. It is significantly harder to deform this way compared to the design @Codec sent


Yes, it is true that that design is stronger, but it doesn’t matter if my design is strong enough to withstand rough vex conditions.

The added structural integrity seems redundant, even given the defense nature of this game. I’d argue that you want to save weight in all possible situations, and I can’t justify excluding the drive base from this consideration. With proper boxing, @Codec’s design would hold up just fine in competition, and it’s simpler, cheaper, and easier to build.


The drive for the pilons in turning point, the most comparable game to this in terms of defense, was literally falling apart in round robin. Keep in mind that was a normal and well supported mecanum drive. The design presented here isn’t as strong as that one was, and will not be able to withstand extended periods of good defense without significant amounts of additional bracing

What I’m saying is I don’t think that your design‘s structural integrity will hold, and if that’s what you get for a few grams less weight I don’t think that’s the best option. add 15 lb’s onto that base and the c channels will morph pretty quick. Remember that the base is one of the only places that weight is debatably a good thing (COG mostly, but v5 motors also have a lot of power so the added momentum and inertia doesn’t hurt)

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Feel free to try ofc but those are my thoughts on it

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Totally agree with this. There is a slight flaw in @Codec’s design. Or not really a flaw, but there is a way to improve it further without adding any redundancies. Because the wheel pods are cut at an angle on the mounting points, if you put those angled bits flush against a c-channel, it will be impossible to move without bending the aluminum which could be further reinforced with box bolts.

@vexreally I do like the design you provided, but the purpose of this thread was to present a much more simple x-drive design, not necessarily a more robust fully fleshed out design.

Though you’re not wrong, you could always add box bolts or more bracing where necessary. As a stand-alone chassis, however, this design would work just fine. Remember this thread is not case-specific to anything, it is just an idea for a simpler x-drive.


True, but he did call it

I think it’s fair that this comment opens it up to criticism from people who think they have a better X drive design, like the one 1961 pulled up. Of course, as a simple design the one in the OP is effective for the thread’s purpose as a “simpler x drive design”. Even still, I think I’ll stick with my structural integrity and non morphing c channels.


I think this argument is all rather redundant. Any design can be equally robust, it just depends on whether or not you reinforce it right.
Just like how any car can be fast, if you build it right.
Sure, codec’s base may not be a tank in its stock form, but if you add extra supports itll be just as good


i can vouch for this style x drive. i made one for tt last year and it was by far the easiest to build and most ridged design it was basically indestructible. the mounting points were a bit wonky but small price to pay for the best x drive design :slight_smile:


I haven’t forgot about strengthening things like…
or with standoffs or c-channel couplers. Probably should have included this type of things in the design.

But, for all you structurally paranoid out there, I have made a slight redesign to show that you can easily reinforce the design if need be. (Also this was just a quick thing, you can probably do to it better.)


The nice thing about the design is that the holes line up in many situations, making everything much simpler.

Also on the topic of weight reduction; here per angle change there is one screw compared to two 45 degree steel gussets, 4 screws per gusset, and typically some standoffs.


This is great stuff!

My only observation w/these designs is all of the C-Channels should be supported on both ends - easily done from what I ‘C’ (pun) :grinning: