Has anyone tried using a slip gear on a flywheel? If you slip the output gear, if the other gears have a low enough moment of inertia, the slip gear would act as a ratchet without taking up the space of a ratchet. Downside to this is that the flywheel accelerates more slowly, but would it be worth it?
Probably not because it would be really difficult to get the slip gear to line up on the slip. What I’m trying to say is that when you shut off the motors, how are you going to make sure that the output gear stops with the slip lined up with the gear with the flywheel on it? It would be really complicated because after you shut off the motors, the gears still move.
Assuming low moment of inertia of the gears (which I think is reasonable, because they have essentially no mass compared to the wheels), the momentum of the wheels pushes the gear until the slip lines up, at which point the wheels keep moving, but the gears stop. The gears don’t (I think) have enough momentum to keep moving against the motors.
If your flywheel needs a ratchet to protect the motors, then it might not be a terrible idea. However, I don’t think most flywheels do need ratchets. At least, of the 6 flywheels my team has built over the course of the season, the only damage any motors have sustained was a shattered (as in pulling metal splinters out of the casing) motor gear tooth, when we didn’t sign lock our PID, and it switched from 127 to -127 really quickly.