That being said, the density of steel is around .291 pounds per cubic inch. An 18” cube (18^3) equates to 5,832 cubic inches of space within the bounds of the cube, and multiplying the amount within the cube by the density gives us (5832*.291) = 1,697.12 pounds of possible material for a robot. HOWEVER, the rules regarding a legal robot state that all materials must be VEX-certified, which dense raw steel is NOT. So, we will have to use 5x25 hole steel plates as a backup. These plates are weighted at 0.327 pounds per plate, and are 0.046” in thickness. This means that we can stack a maximum of 391 plates from the ground to the top of the 18” area allowed. The 5x25 plate are 2.5”x12.5” in total area (from the perimeter) which means that they take up a total of 31.25in^2 of space, and a total of (31.25x0.046)= 1.4375 in^3 of space. This means, in a perfect world, we can cram 4,057 Steel plates into the possible area. Now, this is fun and all, but it still doesn’t meet the requirements of a robot. in order for that (in a loose sense) we need a cortex , a battery, and a key. The cortex takes up 17.15 in^3 of space, or about 12 steel plates worth. The battery takes up 10 steel plates worth, and the key takes up only 1 steel plate’s worth of space. This means, including the 1.13lbs coming from the combination of the necessary items for a robot, we can fit an adjusted total of 4,034 steel plates onto our perfect robot. This means, our perfect robot will weigh (4.034x.327+1.13) pounds, or a total of 1,320.248 pounds.
TL:DR- my robot this year will be only 4,034 steel plates and a few basic necessities, and will weigh a total of 1,320.248 pounds.