Snail Hood Locking Advice

Hey guys!
My team and I were working on a snail hood design for our robot and were having some trouble with figuring out how to lock it. Any ideas?
EDIT: Also, I’m talking about keeping it in dimensions at the star of the match. Sorry for the confusion.
Much appreciated!

you don’t need to lock it. just have enough tension from rubber bands to keep it up.

unless you’re talking about keeping it in size at the start of the match. in that case, you have a few options. you could use some nylon string put though some meshed gears so that when the gears turn it releases the string, which would release the hood. a better solution might be creating some kind of hook on the sides of the hood that hook on to something attached to your launcher, so that when it rotates for the first time it releases the latch.


Yep… Keeping it in size is what I was talking about. Thanks for the help!

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I put zip ties onto the edge of my hood that I weave into the bands on my flywheel before the match. There’s just enough friction to reliably hold it in place


We’re doing that exact thing, technically the hood can fall back into starting restrictions because there’s no lock but our rubber bands hold it up.

We use 135° gussets attached to either side of our hood that perfectly mesh with a screw sticking out from our flywheel gear. It works really well for us.

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My team made slits in the Lexan and used the thin spacers with screws going through them to prevent the hood from coming out. At the start of the match, the Lexan is flat and then when a ball comes up it gets pulled up by the bands and stays up. Not the easiest mounting system but is very clean.
IMG_91BDCF9104F1-1 2


@neera That’s a really interesting mechanism. How do you keep the Lexan from just going around the spacers? Wouldnt the outside parts be pretty loose? or are they in tension?

Our hood has a crap ton of rubber bands pulling it up:

it has constant force pulling it up and a separate rubber band chain that pulls it down, that is hooked around a sprocket on out rubber band combines.

The slits are cut just a bit wider than the width of the screw diameter which is significantly less than the rim of the spacer, so even though it’s being pulled forwards its doesn’t come out. The outside not as loose as you would think and hasn’t popped out since its all apart of one piece of lexan. As long as the spacers are screwed in the right amount it should be fine.

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I use a different way of deploying the hood, but the same concept still applies: I have a “hook” on the front of my hood that rests on one of the rubber bands on my middle roller.
Hood “hook:”

(Kinda jank but it works)


Ours is pretty simple. The way we banded our hood allows it to rest on the top roller when the zip ties we use as stops are tucked next to the top roller. When the top roller spins, the zip ties pop out and the hood is tensioned upwards. This also pushes the backboard up. We’ve changed the backboard since we recorded this, but the same concept applies.

(Driver controlled so not as fast as a macro)


that’s not jank, it’s one of the better ways to do it :slightly_smiling_face:

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