Building a Robot Can be Messy
By Arvind on August 25, 2019
Mistakes are the way we learn
Building a FIRST Robotics Competition robot is not easy. Every team meeting has been incredibly productive, but it still takes time (especially when you are a rookie). We make a lot of mistakes and have to redo a lot of work. For instance, the chain is either too long or too short. Time to re-think. Rivet, undo rivets. Screwed in too tight and bent the aluminum tubing,…undo and straighten, ty again. Drill a hole. Hole is not big enough. Drill some more. Wrong screw size, go buy the right one. Didn’t have enough screws, go get some more. The list goes on and on.
We had five trips to the local town hardware store in just one day! The friendly staff at Warehouse Sales now know something is happening just two blocks away - a group of high school students are building a robot! We invited them over to come see what happened to everything we bought in their store.
Each of us is learning how to operate tools, especially the drill press, band saw, power tools and rivet gun. Every student must first watch an adult use the machine. Then the student will use the machine with the adult. Finally, the student will use the machine with an adult supervising. We are very grateful for the team parents who have come in to show us how to operate the tools as well as for teaching us tips on how to use the tools.
For the smaller tools such as rivet runs, once we know how to use the tool, we train each other.
Senior Mentor Support
FIRST Senior Mentor, Andy Yantes, visited us again to check on us. He was able to answer a lot of questions for us and steer us in the right direction. Most importantly, he was able to give us the confidence that will have a robot for MVRC!