VEX Starstruck Side Rollers

As many of you would have known, a few months ago Team ALBA showed off their Open Source Starstruck Robot, featuring a robot using side rollers. Back then, many teams thought that the side rollers were too slow and inefficient in collecting stars.

But then, I came across this video, featuring a robot in a competition in China: , which shows a side rollers robot dominating the match.

After watching this, would you think that side rollers are now competitive? I’ve showed this video to some people, and they were all shocked to see how effective the side rollers could get. (To see the “Wow!” moment, skip to 1:05 and see how it collects 5 stars)

(P.S. Sorry for the bad video quality, it was the best I could get)

Wow, the video was uploaded about 6 minutes ago, and it’s on the vex forums already .
i have really underestimated the power of side rollers in starstruck, after looking at some the matches from china, i can really say that china comes up with some really creative ways of scoring the game objects

We didn’t see the video… But we had a scrimmage just a few days ago, largely between the junior teams of 8068 and 8059 (10 teams in total).

8059 tested out a side roller intake. And despite the poor tray design and CG problem, it gave the pneumatic claw and dumpster a real hard fight.
In fact, we are going to spend a bit of time to improve on it.
The side roller definitely has lots of potential!

I also saw this video a while ago on youku, and thought a lot about the design. It looks like siderollers do have the ability to pick up large amounts of stars (maybe even more than 5, if you use a gateway style expanding tray). This may actually play into the strategy that a lot of people brainstormed where you dump a huge amount of game objects in the last few seconds of the game, so the other team does not have time to bring them back.

However, it also looks a little inconsistent in its current state, as you can see it drops a lot of stars at the end, and I don’t believe that robot made it far in the middle school eliminations. Also, the dumping speed is a little slow, so my team was thinking about a pneumatic system on the siderollers that pulls them out to the side while dumping, so the objects just slide out. Either way, there is definitely potential in the design.

Ginsen, could please elaborate on what a gateway style expanding tray is? I tried looking it up but couldn’t find anything. Thanks!

Sure. If you look at this vid of 8066A’s robot skills run at the world championships, you can see that at the start of the match, the back part of the tray is folded upwards. When they deploy, it drops back and results in a longer tray. If you really had the lifting power this year, you could probably have the same mechanism to hold a lot of game objects.