What is an axlelock?

I have been looking around youtube and have been seeing people using axle locks for phasing what is it and how to build it.

thank you i know now im on discord


Please help me here. Instead of posting an answer here, using words with correct spellings, punctuation and grammar; you recommend a forum that uses words that are often misspelled, has a lack of grammar, punctuation and the most common word is ‘bruh’. :thinking:

Given the context that this is the VEXIQ forum, I’ll assume that @vexvelocity (Hi, welcome to the forum) is looking how to use the 1x3 or the 2x2 lock plates (found here, lower right corner of the picture https://kb.vex.com/hc/en-us/articles/360035955151-Selecting-Capturing-and-Supporting-VEX-IQ-Shafts)

The article has a good description of how the lock plates are used. The axle goes through the center, and pins hold the plates in position. It’s a way to keep multiple plates moving together (like in the bottom of a dumper for this years game).

If that is not the case then knowing what videos would help. I came across this excellent video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68oPA9c9W28&ab_channel=KeplerElectronics that starts off with the classic “oven presentation of today’s subject”. They talk about 5 different mechanisms / locks. Knowing which one is a problem would be a help.

The reason that I suggest responding here, is that a year from now a new roboteer may have the same question and can easily find the answer. (using the search function) Sometimes delving into a discord to find the answer can be challenging.


You mean it is not plasma, gas, liquid, or solid? or other?


I’ll guess phase is a new application of that word. You know, how pneumatic cylinders are called pushers. Or the small traction wheels are called rounds. :thinking:


This is why I recommended discord to this person because the forum isn’t good for discussing build ideas or mechanism explanations compared to discord. Its a great place for rules and stuff, but in this case your comments aren’t helping because you dont understand the game metas as much. Discord provides more indepth higher level explanations and discussions.

Maybe you could be a little more polite and help explain this meta/mechanism, instead of insulting one of the Forum’s most respected users that has been posting here for over 10 years. There is no reason we can’t have insightful discussion with high-level explanation here.



Although what you said is true, madisogl is also partially correct. Especially this year, IQ has become way more complex than ever before, and the competition for skills leaderboard is very high. A lot of mechanisms cannot be understood unless through video calls/in-depth explanations. On forums, it takes some more time to get a response, while on Discord you could get a response in less than 5 minutes (if you have US timezones and ask after school is out). Axle locking is a less complex topic but it’s very hard to get right.

The problem is you are using generic terms to means specific things on an IQ robot, axle locking already has a well known meaning, it reaches far further than this years game and IQ.

You are correct in that some of these concepts can not be easily explained in one or two paragraphs, however, if time is taken it would make a good long form post in the form of a tutorial and I would expect much of this material could come from an engineering notebook. We used to have many such topics here on the forum in years past, members would explain difficult concepts often over a number of posts, it never seems to happen anymore.

as an example, here is one (of many) topics I posted in the past that took several hours of preparation before being published.


Not gonna lie, you can ask chatGPT most of these things. Ask for GPT4 from your parents and it will give u an image 2

It wasn’t the article you posted, but one from a previous forum that explained the field control system. From it I was able to build a single switch version of the auto/drive switch that plugged into the controller. They used a double throw switch with a center off. I made about 50 of them and gave them away at events.

I also built a battery powered switch that would run the towers. We could run a match and score it on paper. It let us run 4 fields at events without problems with USB hubs. I remember one event where the computer died, and we ran the rest of the event manually. Fun times

But your point stands, it longer articles that moved VRC/VIQ forward.


Then let’s bring that in-depth explanation to the forum! :+1:

After watching one of @madisogl’s videos, I think I understand what a phase mechanism is (pretty clever name).

Notice the rotating plus shape (forgive my lack of knowledge of terminology of vex IQ parts :joy: ) that indexes around the bar to allow the robot to ‘phase’ through the bar.


Hate to burst your bubble, but this is not an “in-depth explanation”, you just posted a 10 second, not particularly descriptive, video.


You’re right, of course. :slightly_smiling_face:

I’m not exactly capable of bringing that in-depth explanation as I have not competed in VEX IQ. :person_shrugging: That comment was targeted to those who (in the tone of their writing) do seem to be able to bring that discussion here.

Either way, my comment about “in-depth explanations” was a knee jerk reaction… and wasn’t very productive or respectful to @dystopia (who seems to be much more qualified to talk about this anyway). So… Sorry.

I’ll keep researching to see If I can tease out what an “axle lock” is (now that I know how a “phase mechanism” works), and let y’all know if I find something. (until anybody who already possesses the knowledge decides to grace us with their time). :wink:

Man, this hole is getting deep… I should really put my shovel down


But hiding details for something people desperately want to copy creates an intrigue and is giving more food for the thought. Teasing just minimal details creates an opportunity for students to think and, maybe, come up with similar but different solution…

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all art and science…



scavenger hunt my beloved.

“Axle locks” are also commonly called “shaft collars” or “axle collars”. These are used to hold a shaft/axle in a certain side-to-side orientation (as to not slide out during use).

1 Like

Anyways, if you’re still wondering what an axle lock is, the top half of the robot is only connected to the bottom with an axle. This axle allows the top half to pivot allowing you to set it at any angle. The “axle lock” works by having a platform next to the axle that the top half rests on. This platform has pins on it that slightly angle the top half upwards. The weight of the top half bends it down and removes the upwards angle. By changing the height of the pins on the platform using spacers/washers, you can get the angle and the weight to cancel each other out which ends up with the top half being mostly parallel to the bottom. The main purpose of using an axle lock is to remove the phase switches in order to turn easier in the supply zone.

However, I do not recommend using this mechanism because it can bend or even break the parts and makes the top half bounce a lot. I recommend just using the phase through support mechanism because it helps to keep the top half still and does not require as much tuning.


Hate to be rude but madisogl is completely in the right. He acknowledges that the vex forum is a great place just not for this discussion. He understands that despite you being an active, helpful member you do not follow this game to the same extent as him and therefore cant help as much with things like that. Dont get me wrong you can help people, but in this case nobody has gained anything. Madisogl offered vex velocity help and vex velocity got help.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge! It’s contributions like yours that make our discussions richer