Where did the Flywheels go?

So throughout the season, I noticed that when it came to a flag actuators flywheels were really big at the beginning of the season, and catis and punchers where most definitely underestimated, except for maybe 8059 and their double cati. Later in the season, you begin to see a lot fewer flywheels and tons more catis, and thanks to 547C and their world skills winning puncher and their tutorial on how to build one, punchers also became used much more frequently and wasn’t quite the laughing stock it used to be. So I want to know what happened to flywheels. perhaps it was because the difficulty to build one, the tuning, accuracy or maybe something else. I would like to know yalls opinion on what happened to flywheels and why.

Definitely, the difficulty to get a flywheel to work at peak is why teams started to drop it. But IMO the only real competitor with a well-tuned flywheel is an angle changing puncher.

Yeah, the complexity of the flywheel has really discouraged it. The simplistic puncher has really taken over. Add an angle adjuster, and they can really be a force to be reckoned with. I’ve even seen 2BCs die out some, but not as much as flywheels.

I think flywheels were the first thing everyone thought of because of their prevalence in NBN (not least discobots), given that seniors this year started in NBN. But the fact is that turning point is a vastly different game than NBN. Many of the newer teams find the idea of a flywheel intimidating, since it requires precise tuning, low friction, etc. Flywheels also generally need an indexer, requiring an extra motor (in the absence of some kind of differential), a much higher cost with v5. I think flywheels can definitely compete; in fact, high level flywheels might be the most effective shooter. But most teams have gravitated towards the 2bc or puncher, especially with 574C’s tutorial.

I also have seen a major decline in flywheels, its mostly punchers and catties now.

Even catapults have started a little bit of decline IMO. Theres just a massive push to punchers, and rightfully so. They are easy to make and always really competitive as long as there is some decency in build quality.

true, here in socal it’s like 75% punchers

I think we are actually seeing a shift in higher level teams who are shifting away from catapults and going for actuating punchers and actuating flywheels. As more defense is being played having a double shot that’s doesn’t connect can change the outcome of a match. My prediction for worlds is if the rules of defense are not changed at all for worlds we will see double catapults struggle more and more. As of right now looks like a puncher will win worlds!

At least in Michigan it is 98% punchers, I have seen 2 catapults,and 4 flywheels all season.

In MS for South Carolina, there’s 3 punchers, no catty’s and only one flywheel

Our team uses a flywheel. Its actually really difficult to tune as you’ve said, but we’re pairing it with the vision sensor to hopefully have a nice aiming system (though as a reflection on our season, a puncher would have been better paired with it). There’s also a lot of issues with actually getting it to perform - the hood, gear ratio, friction… all for something that functions about the same as a puncher.
But still

it is true that catapults are the most weak to defensive play, but If you use locked omnis and brake your motors its tough to defend against

My steel chassis, 2 locked omnis, and 4 HS393 motors have served me well. I haven’t been successfully pushed around once.

I’d imagine that flywheels can be extremely competitive, but I have yet to compete against a good one with a decent robot myself, so I can’t say for sure how to counter them. I suppose if you have a 2bc you just can’t afford to miss. so why take that risk? use the all new passive flagpole aligners, developed by me I think. oh boy oh boy, never miss a double shot again.

Flywheels are definitely declining because of their difficulty to tune perfectly. Many teams see other punchers, and see that they can have the same success with much less work. With that said, I think that flywheels (especially actuating ones) are likely the most effective (and hardest to build) shooters.

Honestly… I don’t agree with the analysis that is adopted by many teams - i.e. it is easier to defend against 2bc than flywheels or punchers.

All shooters can be defended using the same way - by pushing them around.
I don’t understand the part about 2bc being “easier” to defend against.

I do understand that many ppl are saying these 2 points as 2bc’s main weaknesses…

  1. Missing 2 balls at one-go
    But let’s put it this way, if i am defending against a flywheel or puncher, i wouldnt stop pushing just because they missed their 1st ball. I will keep pushing.
    Moreover, after missing the 1st ball, the flywheel or puncher will need to realign as well, and this will opens up to more opportunities for opponents to push them further.

  2. Limited option to fire off 1 or 2 balls
    Think the key is having a fast and efficient intake.
    If the intake is fast enough, then it doesnt matter that much even if i need to throw 2 balls just to shoot one flag. I can always take in another ball for the flags on the next flag pole.
    And btw, the next evolution of 2bc’s intake allows the driver to decide to load 1 or 2 balls into the catapult.

And looking at some of the 2bc robots’ performances in Sing VRC National (i.e SingOpen), I am pretty in awe with the wide range of shooting positions of the 2bc. Too tight for space at the near field? They shot the flag from the far end.
Basically for the better 2bc robots, you have no idea do they intend to hit it from far or at the near field.

And yes… like what @Xenon mentioned above - just lock your omnis to go against all the pushings.

Edit: I really don’t mind seeing lesser 2bc in worlds though :stuck_out_tongue:

@meng what I meant was not defending is easier against an unprotected 2bc, but it can be more effective, forcing them to miss twice.

I can tell you flywheels are still very much the better shooter. Much faster than 574.

Speed isn’t the only variable to take into account. If that were the case then 2BCs would be dominating.

the three biggest factors to take into account when comparing shooter types, are efficiency, accuracy, and versatility.

now lets score all the shooter with this lovely chart. a 3 is best, a 1 is worst





wow they are the same! this scientifically proves that it really comes down to driver preference, and how well the individual robot is made.