Week One 2018-19

As build season began the team began brainstorming and prototyping. Focusing on ways to solve the main issues of lifting and moving game pieces, getting the maximum amount of points in endgame and the sandstorm phase. We broke up into groups of hatch manipulators, cargo manipulators, end game, chassis, and electronics. We started figuring out what parts we may need and ordering what we can. As well as finally CADing everything…obviously.

Kickoff 2018-19

On kickoff day, the team traveled to Airstrike’s home base in Newport in the midst of a rainstorm to view the kickoff video. An event with both team 78 Airstrike and team 5846 Southcoast Corsairs. After viewing the highly anticipated game release our three teams mixed together to brainstorm possible techniques; along with reading over the rules to become familiar. Airstrike also invited a guest speaker Jamie Bova who once took part in FRC and is now an engineer and the mayor of Newport. Airstrike provided its guests with computers to view the game book and a lot of pizza and juice boxes which made the visit to team 78 Airstrike very boisterous.

Pre-Season 2018-19

Prior to this season the team has spent tireless hours testing chassie designs with different coding, sensors, etc. While also taking inventory and organizing the supplies closet. All electronics, sheet metal, motors, and gearboxes have had a new and improved organization system. Some redecorating has also occurred with our newly painted closet that is now both organized and very green.

Outreach 2018-19

Over the summer some of the team traveled to Captain Issac Paine Elementary School to rid the playground of litter and debris. The team members tirelessly searched the desolate playground for hours crawling under large structures and checking behind every bush in sight. At the end of the long fun filled day the playground was clean and ready to welcome the young children for their next school year.

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Captain Issac Paine finally had a clean playground, but the team wasn’t finished yet. In November the team took the treacherous journey once again to the elementary school but this time they weren’t headed for the playground. The team helped for a week at the school’s hour of code. They explained what FRC is and all about what each member does on the team (early recruitment) and even showed some footage from last year’s competition. Then the students took part in the hour of code and coded robots to dance, mine craft men to mine, and instruments to play symphonies. The week was a success and all the elementary students had a good time.

SE Massachusetts Preparation 2017-18

SE Massachusetts begins on Friday and the team is getting everything ready as quick as we can. The pits have been decorated in the most amazing Gongoliers decorations and we took our robot out of the for 2 hours last night to get the Plexiglas over the electronics board but overlooked the fact the we neglected a spot for the kill switch. We also fixed the cracked bearing in the elevator. Our director of design has redone the Scul-R from a few years ago to make it our climber for this year. With a storm coming in tomorrow morning, tonight's meeting may be our last chance to work on the robot before competition.

Bag and Tag Day 2017-18

Bag and Tag Day 2017-18

It's now the last day left in build season, so we have to finish everything today. Our inboard Intake is on the robot and after playing around with tensioning it appears to be in working order and can hold cubes. The outboard intake has also been attached to the robot and has been wired up and functions properly. The elevator was one of the first things to be attached to the chassis after it was assembled. The winch that moves the elevator also has been assembled and put on the chassis and the elevator works going up and down. We are spending our last 6 hours before bag and tag testing everything and making sure everything works. Programming and controls is working hard to fix any issues with wiring getting in the way of the moving parts and touching up our autonomous code. We have autonomous operations completed (reaching the baseline), and have a preliminary version of the scale and switch auto commands posted on our GitHub page.  You can view our current robot code in its glorious open-source state at https://github.com/Gongoliers/GongoliersRobot2018. That code is licensed under the MIT license, so you are free to use it in your robot code if you provide us attribution. We have a few concerns regarding our autonomous program’s reliance on encoders and gyros, since we have limited experience with each.

Our bumpers are going to be finished before the end of today. All in all, we are in a good position to be finished by the end of today and ready for bag and tag.

 

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The cube intake up and running!

Week Six 2017-18

With bag and tag day only 13 days away, the entire team is working as hard as possible to finish everything for the robot. We had a small problem with our chain tension that we are currently resolving. Our elevator is fully assembled and mounted to the chassis after a few minor modifications to make sure that it was running as smooth as possible. One group has been working very hard on the arms that we are using for our external intake system and another has been working on the carriage that will be carrying the power cubes up to the switch and scale.

Media and public relations have been working on all of our logos and merchandise that will be made very soon. They have also started to design and paint the BotCave where our programming and controls group spends much of their time and where many parts are stored. Finally, competition department just began to put together our pits so that way we can fully consider where everything will be when we go to competition. Stay updated by checking in often!

Mr. Gongoleski (and his beautiful sweater) explaining just how little time is left in build season.

Mr. Gongoleski (and his beautiful sweater) explaining just how little time is left in build season.

Week Four 2017-18

Greetings Gongolier followers! We have an update on our robot! This past Friday we hosted a Star Wars themed Robo-ball, as the Ponaganset school was having the Winter Ball. During the Robo-ball we completed our chassis, and are currently tweaking our final designs for the robot. We have yet to finalize our climbing designs, and so are unable to complete our decision on where our electronics board shall be placed. We have also begun our placement of our gear boxes, but have yet to finalize the placement of said boxes.

We have been having some technical issues with the new coding of Robot Builder, as we have an issue losing packages when we run the motors on our prototype intake system. Our CAD files are nearly completed and we have yet to finalize our climbing component. But, as a team, we are coming along nicely! We are up to date on many of our guidelines, and so are being the best team we can be!

    ----Seth Drexler P&C Department

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Ty, Steven, and Angie working on the cad model

Week Three 2017-18

In our third week, the media and public relations department is much more than busy! Many of our graphic design team members are working on team merchandise, posters, and many of pictures of past robots. Our assistant director is currently filming portions of the Chairman's Award video and will be submitting that at the Southeast Massachusetts FRC competition. Many other department members have been posting on our other social media accounts, so check them out to learn more about what we are doing. In other news we have began prototyping and testing our arm intake device and working on other parts as well. Check in often for updates on our team!

A prototype for our outboard intake system!

A prototype for our outboard intake system!

Update From The Build Department 2017-18

We’re now into the second week of build season and so far we’ve been brainstorming and creating prototypes for the different manipulators. Our Director of Design has finished the CAD file of our chassis and we finished assembling our gearboxes and taught new team members how to build them and how they work on the robot. We’re excited to continue building and get further into build season. Check here often for frequent updates as we continue on!

Programming & Controls 2017-18

Programming & Controls 2017-18

Greetings Gongolier followers!  We have an update on the electronics board along with some programming work we’ve begun.  To start off, we’ve connected all the basic essential electronics from the PDP to the Radio.  After finishing wiring the electronics board, we re-imaged the RoboRio and the wireless radio.  Next, we connected all the VictorSPs we are planning to use this year in preparation for the number of motors we will be using.  While assembling two gearboxes to run our drivetrain, we hooked up four CIMs using the Powerpole connectors.  We are excited to test out the Powerpole connectors for the first time this year.  Along with these, we are also excited to use the Rev radio PoE cable and the am-3583 Robot Signal Light, making our electronics setup much more efficient and less error prone.

Our programming group created a project which runs the CIMs in either direction at a varying speed in order to cycle through them.  We were able to quickly identify and fix a small issue with one portion of the program, in which the RobotMap class was never initialized.  We will be adding the functionality to increase or decrease the speed of the CIM motors while the program is running.  Finally, we plan to start the outline of our main competition program very soon.

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The Programming and Controls Department

Kickoff!!! 2017-18

Kickoff!!! 2017-18

The day that we have long been anticipated has finally arrived! After watching the FIRST Power Up release video, the team eagerly began to analyze the game and develop our ideas on what our key performance parameters. Even though there were some arguments and foolish ideas, we came up with many great ideas. Recently, we have been designing and prototyping different parts of the robot. Other members of the team are working on the chassis and making sure that everything is going according to plan. Stay tuned for more updates about build season!

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Watching the kickoff video!

A team member explaining the game field

A team member explaining the game field