What Not To Do

Could we have a couple of posts that show what is not good in a robot for troubleshooting purposes? Like as a newbie, I don’t know what a gear stripping sounds like, or stuff like that, and it’d really help if you guys could give me some examples, so hopefully I won’t make the same mistakes.

I don’t know if this has been done before recently. If so, my your topic is similar to thing didn’t show it. If it has, please post a link. Thank you!

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Gear stripping sounds like Satan brushing his teeth. But really though, if your robot starts to make a bunch of cracking sounds (that’s the best way I can describe it), that’s gear stripping. If you hear it, stop what you’re doing, that’s not what you want to hear. I don’t have a picture or a video of it, but hopefully that gives you some insight on what not to hear.

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If you hear anything that doesnt sound right then chances are something’s wrong

But if your bot is moving and you hear no noise then something’s really wrong

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Don’t place your VEXnet radio buried in a bunch of metal - you will lose signal strength and loss of connection to controller.

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don’t use the thin gears to bear heavy loads, the square that contacts the axles tend to strip (learned the hard way when building a steel scissor lift with low strength gears)

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Long drive shafts are NOT your friend, they bend under load - so that clicking noise as your two sides of a lift try to is not best served by thin 12" drive shafts…

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offset sprockets connected by long chains are likely to break…

When building a drive train, try to attach sides with c-channel cross pieces instead of standoffs, so that the cross pieces attached later don’t need to be drilled to line up. I’d also try to avoid 5-wide c-channel at all costs. There are a couple niche uses for them, but most of the time 2 or 3 wides provide all the support you need.

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Don’t cantilever axles

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Wires running across moving structural members that move are likely to get sheared - or short-circuit - not good to do at Worlds with battery cables - robots likely to suffer meltdown or fire.

Try to avoid friction, so if a mechanism doesn’t free spin when disconnected from the motor, you’ve probably got too much friction.

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File down metal on moving parts so that they don’t slice open the smart cables.

Don’t attempt to cut metal with a file (not fun)

if you need to cut an axle, you can do so with a kitchen kife, a pair of scissors, and a vice (we made one by putting the axle between two C-channels and screwing them together). Only took 10 minutes but bent the steel C-channels, and the end of the axle.

Someone last year did that (idk if aluminum or steel) with scissors and it took a few months with 2 1 ¹/² hour practices a week