This past weekend, ACME traveled to our first qualifier of the season in Folsom. FIRST teams are allowed to go to three qualifiers each to try to qualify for Norther California Regionals. Throughout the day we had some ups and downs, but here is a brief summary of ACME's first Relic Recovery Tournament!
The team worked diligently in the weeks leading up to the competition. We stayed up way past our bedtimes almost every night in order to be ready for competition day. The Hardware and Software teams have been so dedicated to the team and we own them a big round of applause for all of the hard work and dedication they put into the robot.
As for the qualifier, we did really, really well! Our Engineering Notebook came together beautifully, our judges presentation went extremely well and our autonomous code (the part of the game where the robot runs on pre-written code) worked fantastically considering the Software team started testing code the day of the competition!
As you can see above, this is the robot that we took to competition. This first phase of the robot consists of a Glyph lifter (the green wheels) that suck in a Glyph and then move up and down on a lead screw in order to place the Glyphs into the Cryptobox. Attached to the linear slide on the left is the Relic Recoverer, or the Steve-Grabber, as the ACME team jokingly call it. The red, 3D printed grabber at the end is perfectly fitted to the yellow game piece called the Relic. Another unique design we developed is the periscope that rises up from the center of the robot. Since vision is a very important part of the game this year, we needed a phone mount that could rotate in all directions. This is where the idea of the periscope formed. Although it works rather well, we had a slight problem where the scope wouldn't rise up fast enough so some of the code timed out and the robot moved on to the next part of autonomous.
Thankfully, these problems are fixable and the ACME team is preparing to take step to make our next competition robot better than our first. Call it Phase Two, if you will. A time for all members to reflect on the first qualifier and take the steps to improve, not just the robot, but our whole concept of the game. Such as the build time until our next qualifier, tasks being completed and, of course, writing processes and designs of the new robot in the Engineering Notebook.
Another positive of the qualifier was the awards. ACME won two awards this time, including one we hadn't received in previous seasons. This award was the Think Award, which we received for our outstanding Engineering Notebook (kudos to Kelly who worked hard in making the Engineering Notebook stellar). The second award we received was second place Inspire. Inspire is the highest award you can qualify for in FTC and winning second place was pretty amazing considering it was our first tournament of the season.
Going into Phase Two, ACME members and mentors are probably even more excited than when we kicked off the season with the 24-Hour Build. Over Thanksgiving break we are going to be coming up with ideas for new designs and planning out our schedule for the upcoming weeks. Watch out because ACME Robotics is ready for anything!