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  • Using something before play

    My team has come across a problem with are robot. It cant hang during the landing part of Autonomous. I have found a way to prevent this problem from occurring, and it involves for me to run an encoder before Autonomous starts. When hitting the "Init" button on the phone I start to use encoders to hold the motor in place until I hit the "Play" button. Now I don't know if this is legal (I assume its illegal) or not but wanted to check here first so I can an answer before the next meet. If someone could tell me if this is legal or not that would be perfect.

  • #2
    In post #5 in the below link from the official rules forum they have allowed a robot to start on the ground and lift itself into position with its init routine. It seems to me that your idea is a subset of the allowed actions in the ruling.

    https://ftcforum.usfirst.org/forum/t...-match-answers

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    • #3
      Yes, this seems to be legal (says the non-GDC guy). However, you will want to make sure the robot is motionless. Other than that, there seems to be a great deal of freedom with reading sensors.

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      • #4
        I dont really know if we are motionless. O have it to run to position when it's in init, that's where it will have the motor keep the position at 1 place but it does have a very slight motion to it. It makes the motor rev up to keep the position but it doesnt hurt or make the field dangerous.

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        • #5
          Assuming this strategy is legal, you should also consider the power consumption while you are holding the arm position.

          Even if the arm is not moving, you are probably consuming power to hold it's position against the weight of the robot. If the time in init is short, this probably isn't a concern, but it is possible for the init period to get drawn out under some circumstances. It would be terrible to drain your battery before you even get to start the match.

          You should consider coming up with some way to hold the robot in position using an external mechanical means.

          One suggestion is to add a locking device to the lifting mechanism. On our robot we have two such devices, one for the winch, and once for the main arm.
          One of these is a servo which lock the arm in position. To release the lock, we drive the arm in, and release the servo lock.
          For the winch, there is a gravity lock which is held in place by tension on a ratchet. To release it the winch is pulled in, and the latch releases due to gravity, then we can unwind the winch.

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          • #6
            That was our plan as well if the locking position wasn't legal, and it should only be like 10sec worth of wait time from the init to the start

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            • #7
              Originally posted by AMarley View Post
              That was our plan as well if the locking position wasn't legal, and it should only be like 10sec worth of wait time from the init to the start
              Philbot, an experienced coach is attempting to tell you that the exact opposite is possible -
              " but it is possible for the init period to get drawn out under some circumstances"

              At the Interleague we just went to they had the first match setup with robots hanging on the lander before the opening ceremonies, about 15 minutes.

              I've seen FTAs helping teams get their robot connected for several minutes while the rest of the robots that didn't have problems were waiting hanging on the lander.

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              • #8
                At qualifiers and states, it is the norm to have bots hanging for long periods of time. For a match without FTA assistance delays, field 2 would typically be hanging/init-ed while the field 1 match was underway. You would then have a transition between the field 1 match and the field 2 match, introduction of teams, etc. Typically a minimum of 3-5 minutes. Often much longer - if FTA assistance were needed for any bot, if refs/scorers needed to swap out, etc. Some of these cases would go 10-15 minutes or more.
                Our team would laugh at the FTA-assistance dance/song breaks. When one of the songs started playing, you knew a bot was having a problem. "YMCA" became known "Why? FTA".

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