Vex Air Compressor

Well, most people will probably think this is a really dumb idea, but i just wanted to hear their opinions on this. Could Vex make an air compressor. It would be controlled by the Cortex and would fill the pneumatic tanks. It would run off the Robot battery and could refill your pneumatics in game. Vex probably doesn’t have these because 1) probably too hard to build and 2) they want us to work around running out of air. I just want to hear your opinion on this.

Im not going to say impossible, but annoyingly hard.

In HS if you are going to try I’d say to stop there before you did anything because your going to have just about as much fun as we did in trying to mass manufacture the mecanum wheels… if anyone wants to try im not discouraging you I’d like to be proven wrong. Like seriously. But my reasons are as follows.

With the little materials you are given to design and work with might not be the easiest to make airtight enough to actually withstand the forces of one.

The motors VEX has dont spin very fast thus meaning the mechanism wont be tiny due to the massive gearbox that will power it to generate more air than you use.

And lastly if one successfully made one I personally would be TERRIFIED to be near it.

In college however this might be possible using the plastic block. That might be safer, but i’d still have my issues with one.

  • Andrew

I think what he means is an official vex one, not one made by a team. This means it would be safe and easy to use

But still seriously inefficient, given that it would be running on battery and pumping up a pneumatic tank (it would be sort of analogous to using a battery to charge up another battery).

Given that the rules for pneumatic tanks allow you to just add energy storage until you run out of money, why would you ever want this? Especially considering that any battery powered compressor would have to be super fail?

I was pointing out if a team made one and I knew they had one i would

  1. Be amazed
  2. Run away.

Doesn’t really matter if VEX makes one it wouldn’t be worth the money at that point, like VEX Mundi said.

However to his counter argument in FRC we use air compressors powered on batteries, however the difference is that the batteries are pretty much 1000x (exaggeration) better than the VEX batteries, BUT nonetheless that my opinion.

  • Andrew

A while ago, I bought this air compressor ( for $8 USD. Some might call it a piece of $#!%, but it is pretty cheap. A nice one would be a bit more, but not a tremendous amount. Although, vex does like to charge a LOT for things that you can find equivalents for elsewhere…

Couldn’t you make a compressor with a 1-way piston and a couple one-way valves (e.g. maybe you could use a pressure regulator or a properly timed solenoid)? It probably wouldn’t be very efficient, but you could make it out of VEX parts and it could work.

We have a completely functioning prototype. We cannot disclose any details at this time.:slight_smile:

It’s been done before, however IMO totally not worth what needs to go into it to get it built.

  • Andrew

Is it competition legal and efficient? (I dont think your giving away too many details!)

Also, do you plan on releasing it some time in the near future?

just a quick question why would you need a compressor? with the amount of air we can fit on board the robot you should be able to go through a mach with out loosing it all right? plus with vex parts its probably going to be bigger than 1 or 2 air tanks and weigh as much as 3. plus you have to use your batteries which are not the most powerful to start with to pump up a compressor plus you would have to delegate at least 1 of your 10 motors strictly for this task.

the bottom line
cool: tremendously
practical: not in the least

this from a high school standpoint anyways