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Sewer man
09-17-2012, 05:17 PM
So after reading a bunch of these forum posts and watching a ton of you-tube of mech warfare, I thought, where are the missiles? Having played a ton of mech games, missiles were always a part of combat. So I thought about a way to add missiles to Mech Warfare.

A missile scaled to the size of Mech Warfare robots would be just about the size of a Nerf dart. Nerf darts would be easy enough of the robot to carry, and would not do any damage being softer than the airsoft pellets already used. The real barrier that I see to using Nerf darts would be the scoring system. Which would record the dart the same as a pellet, assuming the dart even had enough force to trigger it.

So I have an idea on how to modify the scoring system to add the ability to detect a Nerf dart without affecting the scoring system response to airsoft pellets. Coat the tip of the drat with conductive paint, paint line of conductive paint on the target plates of the scoring system, and tying this matrix back into the scoring system.

http://i46.tinypic.com/2en6l8y.jpg
http://tinypic.com/r/2en6l8y/6

When the dart hits the scoring plate, it will complete a circuit between itself, and the lines of conductive paint, and the hit can be registered by the scoring system. This way the darts and pellets can be scored separately, without the scoring of one affecting the other.

I would make a missile worth more points than a pellet, say 5 points, with a 5 second cool down before another missile hit can score.

kamondelious
09-17-2012, 07:33 PM
But what are your ideas for a missile launching system that would be feasible for the classic combat league? Missles are used in hardcore. I don't think we need an additional target panel system nor additional costs to to building mechs. There have been a lot of "wouldn't it be neat!" ideas toss around on the forum over the years, but most aren't practical. I think having a separate scoring system for missiles would fall under this. I would personally rather have more smaller panels using the same # of FSRs we currently do, but even that would be hard to implement.

I'd love to see/hear some cool ideas for adding missiles to the classic league of play. Any thoughts/ideas on that?

Cheers!

:D

jwatte
09-17-2012, 08:13 PM
I think his proposal is to use standard Nerf (or other similar spring or compressed air) launchers.
Unfortunately, the ones that are repeating (like the Vulcan) are pretty heavy :-(

(We do have Nerf fights around the office here, but what we're really missing is a good Nerf grenade, and it doesn't seem like anyone has been able to solve that. The one they have (looks like a pineapple, sort of) doesn't do the trick.)

darkback2
09-17-2012, 08:41 PM
Players are allowed to use Nerf darts under the current rules. They don't score any more damage than the airsoft pellets and are much more difficult to implement reasonably so they haven't been very popular. Figure it this way, a nerf dart gun can carry a few darts in its clip, say 8 to be generous. An airsoft gun can carry a few hundred rounds. The idea of having a completely separate scoring system given how much we already complain about the weight of the current one!?

Hardcore uses micro class rockets...though hardcore is currently more of an exhibition thing than anything else. Last years gold medal hardcore winner didn't have a camera, or scoring panels, or the ability to mount them...he also didn't have a gun, and only had one rocket...that missed.

At one point I think people talked about having fixed turrets throughout the city scape that people could use to add to the entertainment level...I could see doing a nerf dart thing for that, or even for some other mech warfare like game. I ran a mech mach in a friends drive way, and Micheal Overstreet hosts mech warfare at KC makerfaire. I think the key thing there is to not call it mech warfare. :-p

I think what Kam was referring to...the real challenge, stems from the fact that Mech Warfare...the standard airsoft league is already hard/expensive enough to implement using currently available technology. AX-12/HS 645 based Mechs tend to overheat carrying the required payload long before the match is over. Successful bipeds are almost unheard of, and most of the robots end up looking like radio shack threw up (to paraphrase a statement made by someone else at the competition).

I hope you aren't discouraged by this or other responses to this post. As technology, time, and other things improve we might be in a better position to incorporate more ideas, newer scoring systems, and more realistic robots. Please build yourself a mech and push the envelope if you can. Also, Please keep thinking up ideas...who knows what the future holds.

So I guess...My real response to this thread is...

1) Lets work to make the current crop of robots better.

2) Lets work to encourage more people to join up and build robots through sharing ideas, posting about our robots, and tutorials on how to make good mechs,

3) Things always look better when they come in threes.

Hope this helps more than it hurts

DB

kamondelious
09-17-2012, 08:42 PM
hehe, I sort of glazed over the first bit of his text, sorry about that, due to my A.D.D. and the high contrast image of a new target panel concept. :p

I don't really see Nerf darts as a viable option unless you're only planning to shoot one or two. Which makes it even less practical to add a separate scoring system for it.

But something along the lines of an eraser (from the end of a pencil) on a toothpick which a simple paper flight on the end would do the trick for a projectile missile. Even a q-tip dipped in some kind of glue/rubber with a paper flight. Easy/cheap to make, but a repeatable shooting mechanism for such a thing would be another matter. Creating a unit compact/light enough to put on my biped make it seem fairly impractical.

I love the missile idea though.

:D

Th232
09-17-2012, 08:51 PM
I'd agree on size being an issue, I think only the bigger mechs (Giger, IW and Chimera come to mind) would be able to carry them. That said, some of the semi-auto ones are getting smaller these days, cutting down a Stampede or Rayven might be a reasonable alternative if you can get a servo or similar to actuate the trigger. A lot of a typical Nerf gun is wasted space, stuff like the barrels being too wide to be of any benefit. Even then it'd be too heavy for anything based on AX-12s or similar.

However, if we dispense with the self-loading/priming requirements (e.g. four missiles/launchers per mech) then something like the Secret Strike could be compact enough. Without those limitations then you could put some kind of weak adhesive on the end of the dart and not worry about anything getting jammed. Maybe even velcro with matching panels on the mech (a fuzzy mech... that'd be something to see). Could also open up some interesting tactical elements that way.

lnxfergy
09-18-2012, 12:55 AM
How would the "conductive paint" survive BB hits? The lexan covers get the crud beat out of them...

-Fergs

Sewer man
09-18-2012, 07:02 PM
what are your ideas for a missile launching system that would be feasible for the classic combat league?

I would think a preloaded spring, and a solenoid driven quick release would be the most light weight and practical. You would need one mechanism per missile would would limit the number you could carry. Hence the need to have a higher value for a missile hit.


How would the "conductive paint" survive BB hits?

Some research would need to be done on how tough this type of paint is when subjected to airsoft fire. I guess it could be toughed up if it received to many dings are scrapes.


Could also open up some interesting tactical elements that way.

That was the general idea behind starting this discussion.

jwatte
09-18-2012, 09:31 PM
Isn't it a big enough tactical challenge to actually stay operating for 8 minutes? :-)

tician
09-18-2012, 10:12 PM
The only durable method I can think of that might work would be routing shallow traces/trenches into the surface of the lexan shield and lining them with uninsulated wire (about half recessed into the surface and held in place with the occasional dab of adhesive or with a few small loops/stubs of the wire embedded/melted into deeper drill hits in the corners of the trenches in the lexan). Any paint would be too easily scrapped off the lexan unless coated in a protective finish, which would electrically insulate it from the darts rendering the entire concept useless.

Of course you are still left with getting any dart/missile launch system to work safely and reliably, and all within the payload restrictions of the individual bot.

mannyr7
09-19-2012, 06:04 PM
I've disassembled and played with the BuzzBee Toys line of automatic-fire foam guns. The mechanism is very simple and small. Consists of two motors with textured wheels, mounted on a flat plate, with space in between to whip a dart to higher velocity and flatter trajectory than nerf products. Kind of like a pitching machine. They run at 4.5-6V. You have to use BuzzBee darts, as the heads have the right diameter and firmness to provide traction through the wheels. I made a ten round box magazine out of cardboard to hold the darts and screwed it to the plate that holds the motors/wheels. I cut the suction cup part off my darts and shortened about a 1/4" off the rear foam. I was planning to mount a servo with a cam wheel to to push the darts through but haven't got around to it. I'll see if I can dig it out and show some pics. The whole thing is light and compact enough to be mech-portable. I just put it on a pan/tilt setup and used Roborealm to create a sentry turret. :veryhappy:

ArduTank
10-03-2012, 07:56 PM
The launcher is easy. You guys are over complicating it when it comes to the launcher. a simple tube with a can of air/CO2 canister blowing into it would work as a launcher, plus you can make a small hopper to hold 10 or more. and the barrel only has to be say, 3 inches long.and the best part is, the CO2 can would get it flying with enough force to trigger the score panels. you could use the kind of CO2 cans used for CO2 airsoft pistols.

kamondelious
10-03-2012, 09:13 PM
The launcher is easy. You guys are over complicating it when it comes to the launcher. a simple tube with a can of air/CO2 canister blowing into it would work as a launcher, plus you can make a small hopper to hold 10 or more. and the barrel only has to be say, 3 inches long.and the best part is, the CO2 can would get it flying with enough force to trigger the score panels. you could use the kind of CO2 cans used for CO2 airsoft pistols.

So, how is this CO2 canister blowing into a tube triggered? From your description, it sounds like it'll run out of CO2 before you can get a missile loaded. Also, some part of the missiles would have to be sized to the inner diameter of the barrel to provide enough resistance to allow air pressure to actually affect it. Or, you will just blow air and the missile will barely fire, if at all. That also makes loading the missile into the barrel more complicated that you're accounting for. The firing mechanism needs to be strong enough to contain and consistently re-contain the pressurized CO2 canister. I'm sure if someone wanted to look hard enough they could find a CO2 pistol where the firing mechanism is made of aluminium, but I don't imagine it would come cheap and you would probably want/need to chop it up. Perhaps a plastic hose with a valve in it controlled by a servo, but the servo would have to be strong (and/or have adequate leverage) and fast enough. Then however, you'd need a way to open the CO2 canister when it was hooked up.

Another thing to consider is that CO2 powered weaponry is only allowed in the hardcore league.

:D

Upgrayd
10-03-2012, 09:37 PM
Thinking of ways to add new scoring elements is fun but I want to be really blunt here...

Anyone currently participating or planning on participating should only be concerned about walking for a full match under camera control and scoring with our current system. There is basically zero chance we will add any alternative scoring method any time soon.

ArduTank
10-08-2012, 04:15 PM
So, how is this CO2 canister blowing into a tube triggered? From your description, it sounds like it'll run out of CO2 before you can get a missile loaded. Also, some part of the missiles would have to be sized to the inner diameter of the barrel to provide enough resistance to allow air pressure to actually affect it. Or, you will just blow air and the missile will barely fire, if at all. That also makes loading the missile into the barrel more complicated that you're accounting for. The firing mechanism needs to be strong enough to contain and consistently re-contain the pressurized CO2 canister. I'm sure if someone wanted to look hard enough they could find a CO2 pistol where the firing mechanism is made of aluminium, but I don't imagine it would come cheap and you would probably want/need to chop it up. Perhaps a plastic hose with a valve in it controlled by a servo, but the servo would have to be strong (and/or have adequate leverage) and fast enough. Then however, you'd need a way to open the CO2 canister when it was hooked up.

Another thing to consider is that CO2 powered weaponry is only allowed in the hardcore league.

:D Trigger: Solenoid
Missile sizing: You won't have to! A nozzle will provide plenty of push for a say, 50 gram dart. ( educated guess)
Loading: A hopper that drops them one at a time will work well.
Containing Pressure: Simple tubing will work well.
CO2 being hardcore only: Use compressed air. I can get a can of air for 5 bucks that is normally used for airbrushes, that will provide plenty of pressure, and for a fitting for it, use the one off of a $5 airbrush!

Th232
10-08-2012, 06:46 PM
Out of curiosity, have you actually tried doing this? If you're talking about a traditional hopper like what you'd find in a paintball marker, it seems to me that you'll need a method to close off the opening from the barrel to the hopper (add another actuator) so you don't send all your CO2/air into the hopper instead, path of least resistance and so on. Also, if we're still talking about Nerf dart sized missiles, from memory they weigh ~ 2 grams, so I'm really not sure where you're getting your 50 gram estimate from.

The closest viable method I can think of is what the Nerf community is doing here:

http://nerfhaven.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=19569

but that does require sizing your missiles, and will be crazily unwieldy given the size of most mechs out there.

Gertlex
10-08-2012, 06:50 PM
I'll echo the whole 'try doing' idea. You're arguing against a crowd of people who disagree with you. In a situation like that, your best use of time is to stop arguing and actually do what you're arguing is possible. :)

kamondelious
10-08-2012, 07:37 PM
Trigger: Solenoid
Missile sizing: You won't have to! A nozzle will provide plenty of push for a say, 50 gram dart. ( educated guess)
Loading: A hopper that drops them one at a time will work well.
Containing Pressure: Simple tubing will work well.
CO2 being hardcore only: Use compressed air. I can get a can of air for 5 bucks that is normally used for airbrushes, that will provide plenty of pressure, and for a fitting for it, use the one off of a $5 airbrush!

Cool. When do we get to see a prototype? :D

I still think to maximize missile velocity/accuracy more consideration is needed with the fit of the missile in the launching tube. Muskets versus rifles type of thing.


if we're still talking about Nerf dart sized missiles, from memory they weigh ~ 2 grams

Nerf I don't think will cut it unless you add some sort of weight to the tip so that it can get the accurate range and impact pressure needed to be worth the effort.

I'm still thinking that an eraser from the end of a pencil or a small rubber stopper, a 2" piece of 3/32 x 0.014 round aluminium tube and a simple flight should do. You could fit about 3 or 4 of them to one Nerf dart by volume, I'd say.


I'll echo the whole 'try doing' idea. You're arguing against a crowd of people who disagree with you. In a situation like that, your best use of time is to stop arguing and actually do what you're arguing is possible.

As soon as I get my biped operational, almost there, I am going to play with this. ;)

Cheers,

:D

Lightwolf
03-13-2013, 10:27 PM
IMO in order for a missile to even be close to feasible for Mech's in the current state they are. The missile would have to be no larger than the size of a cigarette butt. Even then may be a little big. I don't build robots, but I do a lot of customization and analyzing. Then you have to figure out a reloadable setup, and honestly a guidance/aiming system. You can barely get a nerf gun to shoot how you want it. Visually it would be great to see, but with the weight of the missiles, CO2 can, and firing system, you are looking at the weight of your average bot waist up (including battery, cam, and weapons). I may be wrong, but this is my opinion.

Side note, it's kind of like why the mech's don't have "armor" for asthetic/visual value. The weight hinders you more than the armor helps.

Signed a guy who can't afford to build a Mech, so he lives through you guys!
~Lightwolf

gdubb2
03-14-2013, 11:14 AM
Lightwolf.. depends on the armor, I armored both Bheka and Maggot. However the armor was vacuum formed thin styrene, which really doesn't add much weight. Of course it didn't add a lot of protection either, but it was more for the visual appeal. It would stop a BB though.

Gary

gammaprysem
04-10-2013, 01:10 PM
An easy idea for a luancher would be something along the lines of a base-ball pitching machine.... .two (or atleast one) rapidly spinning wheels that the dart is then pushed through .... ive made a few nerf tanks and three nerf "crawlers" me and my friends around here do mech battles using these luanchers in addition to airsoft "rifles". The luancher i have on my last mecha (chronos - named because its luancher involved clock parts and its left arm looked slightly like a scythe) is called the "time thumper" but that mech was strictly nerf luancher and the luancher used the same basic principle of a airsoft AEG. The "hammer" was cranked back via a modified gear box. The hammer pushed a "puff" of air through the dart propellng it forward.

bloftin
04-10-2013, 03:24 PM
what about the paper munitions...

http://www.wired.com/design/2013/04/paper-shooters/

gammaprysem
04-12-2013, 12:50 PM
what about the paper munitions...

http://www.wired.com/design/2013/04/paper-shooters/
not to try and be negative but i really wouldnt think that paper munitions would be all that great . . . . . they could break apart and shred and lodge into the components of a mech. besides whats the point of making a luancher then turning around making munitions to fit when there is already made munitions available at very low cost?