January 31, 2019

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Today the team is working on various parts of the robot. Nathaniel, Gabriel, Nickel, Richard, Lemon, and Nathan are working on stabilizing the lift component of our robot. They also are working on a way for the robot to get onto the habitat platform. We are going to be using pneumatics to get the robot onto the 6-inch habitat zone. The team planned and designed a way for our robot to get up. Johanna and Laura are working on the website and Emani is working on the sponsorship details. Pheobe is soldering and, Nathan B. and Eric are working on programming the robot. Richard also continued to work on CAD today. Today was a short day for us, but we will continue to make progress on our robot.

January 30, 2019

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Today is the second day that we have met this week. Some people come down and work on the robot individually after dinner or during their free time. Most people are focusing their efforts on the robot.

2:45 – Lemon and Nathan we able to attach a light on the edge of the control board. They took some measurements and used a 3in x 1 ¾in piece of plexiglass and mounted it on the top edge of the control board. This light allows the team to know when the robot is on, enabled, and disabled. If the light is on and still, then the room is currently but disabled. If the light is blinking, the robot is enabled and has the potential to move.

Nickel, Nathaniel, and Gaberial we able to make a lot of progress on the lift. Nickel was able to create the main frame. The lift is comprised of two wooden side supports and two aluminum shaft on a rotating base. The shafts run through the sides of the wooden frames with sprockets in the middle of each shaft to allow for rotation. This will allow for the life to have mobility. In addition, they have attached a large sprocket underneath the base of the life. This component will enable us to turn the lift 360° and grab any hatch panels within the area around our robot. Currently, they are trying to attach a motor to the lift for mobility purposes.

Eric and Coco were able to add some new additions to the code to make it more compatible with the lift. They were able to test the new code and they noticed that there are some improvements that could be made. They will not be able to test the new code until the lift is remounted to the robot.

Richard is currently conducting research on CAD. He is to construct a chain and sprocket.

Johanna is working on the “Meet The Team” portion of our website. There are a few formatting issues that need to get resolved. Nathan is trying to help her resolve these issues but these problems do not have a simple fix.  

Ana is soldering on a connector for the motor that will be attached to the lift. She is also reinforcing the wires with heat shrink. In addition, she was able to attach the base of the lift to the robot.

Nickel is attempting to figure out how to put the chain on the lift. The chain is not the right size for the lift so he is trying to connect more links to the chain.

Since today is Wednesday, Winston was able to come in and help the team. Right now he is trying to attach a motor to the robot. This motor will be able to move our claw into the proper boundary before the game starts.


January 28, 2019

1:30 pm – 5:00 pm

1:30 – Today is the first day this week we are meeting as a team and we will not be here next Monday because of February Break (2/2/19 – 2/5/19). The week after we will increase our meeting time to Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Currently, Lydia and Emani are working with Nathan to figure out what a sponsorship plan will look like. Since this is a big task Johanna and Nathaniel are going to lend a helping hand whenever needed. Eric, Gaberial, and Coco are currently working on the chassis. They have taken the control board off the chassis because it was malfunctioning. There was a loose power connection and the control board needed to be removed in order to fix this problem. Once this problem was resolved, they noticed some improvements that could be made and are working on that now. More specifically, they are replacing wooden components with 80 20 aluminum and increasing assessability for future repairs. Johanna and Laura are currently working on our website. Our old website crash and was unrecoverable so a new one needed to take its place. Since we have to recreate our website, they have to transfer the information that was on our previous website to our current one. Until this is accomplished they will not be able to move forward and upload new content. Like usual, Richard is working with CAD. As the team works on the chassis he has been creating new files and updating our virtual chassis. In other words, after the chassis was modified and the 80 20 aluminum was added, Richard incorperated this modification into CAD. As they continue to work on the physical chassis, Richard will work on the virtual chassis. Nathaniel and Nickel are trying to assemble the mount for the rotating chain life. They are currently working with wood for the base and an aluminum shaft as well as a variety of other components that have not been assembled yet. This includes a sprocket, plastic spacer, lock screws, bearings, and nuts. Nathan B. is working on the camera. He wants to be able to process the camera feed on a computer instead of on the robot. He has noticed that there are delays and the quality of the footage is poor. In addition, to working on the camera he is also helping with the chassis and control board modifications. Ana is has been working on our business cards. Our business cards are have been engraved with the laser cutter on wood. It includes our team name, logo, team number, year, website, e-mail, and school address.

2:41 –  Richard is going to teach Coco and Nathan B. how to use CAD so more people are familiar with the program. Johanna is entering the daily updates onto the website. Emani and Lydia have made a lot of progress on the sponsorship packets we will be handing out to potential sponsors. This includes the different levels of sponsors we have as well as what we will give back in return. The different levels are Gold ($501+), Silver ($251 – 500), Bronze ($100 – 250) and donations. Each donor has access to different rewards depending on their placement level. All donors will be featured on our website, Polo T-shirt and will be offered community service.

January 23, 2019

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Today was the first day we met this week. This is because sports was canceled due to MLK Day. Although we wanted to get into the lab and start working, our space was occupied by a demo class. So, for the first hour, we were in a classroom soldering the battery terminals, motors, and motor control. Our chassis has not grown and is in the same condition as before, however, the control board has been removed from the chassis. This is because we are trying to connect the camera to the control board. Once this is finished, it will be reattached to the chassis. Currently, Eric is working on this project. He is not sure how he will do this, but he will figure it out. Currently, Coco and Nathan B. are attaching the connecting wires to the battery for the robot so we can easily attach the battery to our robot if needed. Johanna and Ana are now stripping the wires connected to the motors so they can solder on a quick disconnect. This will allow us to easily change out the batteries and allow us to change the motors quickly. Richard and Nickel are currently designing the robot on the whiteboard. At this moment they are trying to figure out how tall the robot should be with some potential measurements which will be finalized by the end of Robotics. Laura is interviewing each member of the Robotics team so that she can update the website. She is asking each member why they decided to join the team and one fun fact about themselves. The members are making her job difficult by literally running away from her questions. Winston, WMS alumni, is assisting the team in the best way he can. He is currently working with the band saw. He is going to put a new band on the bandsaw so we can cut aluminum.

3:00 – Ana and Johanna noticed that they did something incorrectly as they were soldering. So they had to take off the heat shrink and re-strip the wires so that they could reattach them properly. The webcam connected to the robot is now up and running.

3:18 – Eric and Nathan were able to get the webcam working. They were able to complete the code and are currently revising it so it is better. Right now, Eric is and Coco is reattaching the control board to the chassis.

Before 5:00 – Winston and Lemon worked on redesigning the control board. Originally the control board was spread out on a wooden board and it covered the entire base of the chassis. Now the control board has been mounted vertically on two pieces of acrylic. They were able to conserve the amount of space the control board takes up which in turn give us space to create our lifts.

January 19, 2019

1:30 pm – 4:30 pm

Today, we are working on fixing the chassis. We have to take the chassis apart because the wheels are not turning. There was no obvious problem when taken apart. We connected the motor and the gearbox to the battery to try and figure out the problem. We think the problem was that the shaft was spinning but the gears were not. We think this was due to a set screw somewhere that is not tight. Nickel was fixing the problem and found that the set screw wasn’t the problem. We now think that the problem was that the retaining clip was bent so it was not gripping the shaft. Nickel tried hitting the clip on more. We tested it again and it still didn’t work. Things weren’t going well. We hammered one of the tabs on the next clip into the gear and we tested again and found that the tab broke. Things were getting worse. We eventually figured out the true problem. We had forgotten to put the key in when assembling the motor. We took it apart, but we had to break the retaining clips to fix the problem, but some of them ended up still working after Ana learned how to better remove the clips. Two of the motors were fully repaired and put back in the gearbox and back on the chassis. We needed one more retaining clip to repair the last motor, so we can fully put the chassis back together. We spent the rest of our meeting cleaning and organizing our workspace.

January 17, 2019

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Today, Eric programmed the chassis so that it can be controlled by a joystick instead of by a computer. The chassis currently has four blue bumpers on each corner. Johanna and Andrea are working together to reinforce each of these. The only thing on the top of the chassis is the main electronics board. Richard is currently learning and working with CAD. Nathaniel is looking to buy more parts for the chain life and the two bar life. Right now, he is looking at different types of gearboxes. He has also added two Mini CIM Motors which will be used for the middle tier of the lift. He also has two CIM Motors, which are the same motors that are on the chassis. They are looking to use them for the bottom of the two bar lift where most movement and strain on the robot will be. There are also two BAG Motors which will most likely be used on the chain lift. Laura is taking headshots of each robotics member in order to update our website. Simultaneously, Coltrain and Eric are working on the code and were successful in transferring it to another computer. Now, we will have the program available on multiple computers.

January 12, 2019

9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Today, a few members of the team went to Revere High School in Boston. Team 125-NUTRONs invited Us and a few other teams for a quick build. During this, we were able to finish our chassis and wire the robot. We also got help with the programming. The chassis was put together before lunch and the wire began. The wiring was finished after lunch. Once we finished, we connected the chassis to the brain. We ran into a problem; when the motors spun, the wheels did not. We held this problem for another day. We got information on Awards and Competition from one of the 125’s mentors. She was extremely helpful and we will be able the implement her advice going forward. The programmers installed hardware, helped create a template, created a basic code, and learned about what the code does. This was a very early morning for us as it was a three-hour drive to team 125.