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View Full Version : Mech Warfare 2014 State of the Union (Pssst. I'm back!)



DresnerRobotics
01-07-2014, 11:41 AM
Hey guys,

So after a bit of a hiatus due to medical/family/work related stuff, I am back in action. You'll see me around the forums a lot more and I'm firing up the old Mech Warfare war-machine once again. We're still on for summer in Chicago for our next event. Loooooots of rule updates will be rolled out for discussion this spring- have some interesting ideas for making Bipeds more desirable (outside of just the challenge of building one that's competitive).

Things I'd like status reports on:

What's the outcome of the community/experimental FSR alternatives?

Universal 3D printed/lasercut gun plans?

Gun control drivers? I know a few people were poking around ideas for this.

What time/month works best for our veterans? I'm shooting for early June as the go-date for our next competition.

Artistic-type people!~ Anyone capable of coming to Chicago a few days early prior to this upcoming summer event to help detail/paint/pretty up our arena?

Current issues:

Seriously need a hand with our new WordPress site. It's been down on maintenance and I simply haven't had time to dig in and learn WordPress well enough to make a functional site. May just redirect to the wikia for the time being.

Arena transportation/upkeep. Unfortunately this Arena still costs about $150 a month to store in California. We've got to get it out to Chicago, or find a new permanent home for it in California and figure out funding to build another one. I can build a new arena much cheaper than our first attempt, so this is on the table.


BTW- Giger is making a comeback this year. :)

Deimos
01-07-2014, 11:50 AM
What's the outcome of the community/experimental FSR alternatives?
I got some pcbs that should arrive fairly soon. Check here for details: http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?6368-Velostat-Linqstat-Target-Panels


Universal 3D printed/lasercut gun plans?
Jwatte has a nice set up, check it out here: http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?6538-Another-AEG-design-thread


What time/month works best for our veterans? I'm shooting for early June as the go-date for our next competition.
Early june is finals week for me :/. The third week of June is summer break though! (so basically any time after June 13th)


Artistic-type people!~ Anyone capable of coming to Chicago a few days early prior to this upcoming summer event to help detail/paint/pretty up our arena?
If scheduled during summer (after June 13th) I could do this. I'm no professional but I've done my fair share of miniatures.

Welcome back btw!

byi
01-07-2014, 12:05 PM
Hi Andrew. Good to see you back.

I am planning on experimenting with my own gun design as soon as my 3D printer arrives. I'll post progress on that next month if possible.

I am trying to get momentum to bring a team from my university this year, so spring would be way easier than summer. even if that falls through, summer would be hard for me. Just thought I'd mention since you asked...

Also, can't wait to see the new giger.

ArduTank
01-07-2014, 12:14 PM
WB Tyberius!

I may not be a veteran, but early June is very possible for me once I get HS Walker going (The whole biped perks sounds good, since he's currently a biped)

I might also be able to help with Wordpress when not at school (maybe during free time at school), even though I'd have to learn it too. I really don't have much to do other than tinker on HS Walker.

jwatte
01-07-2014, 04:24 PM
Jwatte has a nice set up, check it out here: http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/sh...-design-thread


FWIW, I got those parts back from Shapeways, and they seem to fit well! The main draw-back of my approach is that you need gearbox ($12+shipping) and Crosman barrel ($17+prime/shipping) and the Shapeways parts ($40 or so?) and a few inches of 1.5" tubing ($3 or so) so it's not super cheap. But it seems robust in testing so far!

Controllers: I just got boards back from OSHPark for a dual-MOSFET with an AVR chip, all surface mount. I'm also getting a stencil this time -- last time I reflow soldered, I got too many solder bridges. The board has dual DXL-style three-pin TTL/power hook-ups; ideally I can speak the DXL protocol. If not, they will just be used for a "fire" signal. The reason I have two MOSFETs is I want to drive both the feeder motor and the gearbox motor.
There's also an auxiliary board for mounting a TCRT-1000 for slide position sensing for semi-auto action.

I don't know how many of these I could personally build, but assuming I have a working stencil and board and some spare parts, there are people who can do that for us :-)

The back-up plan is a Pololu power h-bridge-- needs more pins, and not serial, and no slide position sensor, but off-the-shelf.

ArduTank
01-07-2014, 04:54 PM
Hey, is there room in your design to be able to fit barrels with bigger OD's???

jwatte
01-08-2014, 11:09 AM
is there room in your design to be able to fit barrels with bigger OD's???

The design is specific to the bucking, hop-up and barrel of the Crosman.
You can load the files into 3ds Max or Inventor or SolidWorks or Blender and re-work them to fit another design, but that's actual work :-)
If I were to change it, it would be to adapt to the $13 crosman spring-powered handgun, to save a few dollars.

ArduTank
01-08-2014, 11:17 AM
Just wondering, because I have a pair of handmade lathed barrels in front of me with an approx. 1/2" OD.

DresnerRobotics
01-08-2014, 01:06 PM
So- this kinda sucks but I'm making the call.

For the sake of simplicity and my sanity, I'm going to leave the current arena/buildings in California. We need to find it a semi-permanent home. Anyone in the community that wants to store/use it, all I ask is that it be used for robotics/education and not sold/broken down for scrap. It's a fairly expensive and large arena, even broken down. Occupies about 4x8x4 feet. Buildings are about a 2.5ft cube.

This means I'll be building us a 2nd arena out in Chicago. I'm going for a slightly different approach- going to build it 16x16x4', with a supported clear lexan ceiling. I think it'll give our spectators a better view of the action, and gives us a bit more flexibility for sizing the length/width bigger. Eventually I'd like us to move up to a 24x24' footprint. I'm guessing a 2nd arena will be in the ballpark of $3000-4000 USD, which we'll have to figure out funding for. Definitely not going Kickstarter route. I'll likely just cover this out of pocket.

CogswellCogs
01-08-2014, 02:16 PM
>> I'm going to leave the current arena/buildings in California

That's a shame. You guys did a great job with that city.

I'm looking forward to seeing "New Mechopolis", however. I still have my sign for it :happy:

DresnerRobotics
01-08-2014, 02:53 PM
>> I'm going to leave the current arena/buildings in California

That's a shame. You guys did a great job with that city.

I'm looking forward to seeing "New Mechopolis", however. I still have my sign for it :happy:

I'm hoping that perhaps in the future, someone will step up and want to host a west-coast event at the Maker Faire in San Mateo. So perhaps keeping it in California is a good route for future expansion :)

ArduTank
01-08-2014, 03:15 PM
That sucks.

However, having a bigger arena sounds good, it'll make for more hiding spots and more corners to surprise each other at :)

jwatte
01-08-2014, 04:28 PM
But... but... JUMPJETS!?

OK, I'll shut up now! Can't wait to see how it will work out.
There's a Tech Shop mid-peninsula that has previously helped out for RoboGames, so perhaps they will want to keep it. Or not.

Deimos
01-09-2014, 08:31 PM
Do you have any more specific info on the location of the event yet? Any news on the analog cameras?

giantflaw
01-11-2014, 11:05 AM
How much approximately does the 4'x8'x4' weigh? How much does the 2.5' cube weigh?

giantflaw
01-13-2014, 01:57 PM
Andrew,

Where was the older Robogames 2010 type arena purchased from? We want to upgrade from a garage to portable tent type arena. That one looks easier for us to store, transport and set up/down. We currently have 4 mechs with others in progress and want to have monthly fights in Tucson.

jwatte
01-13-2014, 05:05 PM
Tuscon, huh? I wonder how long the drive is...

DresnerRobotics
01-13-2014, 07:23 PM
Andrew,

Where was the older Robogames 2010 type arena purchased from? We want to upgrade from a garage to portable tent type arena. That one looks easier for us to store, transport and set up/down. We currently have 4 mechs with others in progress and want to have monthly fights in Tucson.

I built it from scratch using PVC pipe and a tent that Che sewed for us.

Want the 2012/2013 arena? Haha. I'd appreciate you guys making a donation to Mech Warfare to fund us building a new arena out here if you plan on taking it permanently (and to Arizona), but it's been a financial drain storing it in California. Too expensive to ship, but driveable from Tucson. :) I can't think of a better home close to the west coast, and with 4 mechs up and running already perhaps you guys can host an annual west-ish coast event?

It weighs around 400lbs for everything, if I recall correctly.

jwatte
11-04-2014, 10:15 PM
It looks like the Robogames kickstarter is getting funded:
http://bit.ly/RoboGamesKS

Who wants to get together and see about a Mech Warfare event at the games?
I live very close (+) but work is quite heavy this year (-).

ArduTank
11-05-2014, 04:00 PM
Unfortunately, that's way too far for me.

Speaking of which, what's the current state of things with the Chicago event??

jpieper
11-06-2014, 07:38 PM
We'd be game to help make a Mech Warfare event work at the 2015 RoboGames, even coming from the east coast.

jwatte
11-07-2014, 10:25 AM
They sent out another update suggesting all the events are on:
http://robogames.net/events.php
This list includes Mech Warfare.

parallax
11-07-2014, 10:34 AM
I was literally just getting on to post and find out whether Mech Warfare 2015 was a go or not. I'm assuming it is, given that our venue is back?

byi
11-22-2014, 02:01 PM
Count the Columbia team in for any 2015 event, Chicago, Robogames, or otherwise.

jwatte
11-22-2014, 02:02 PM
I haven't heard anything from Andrew, so I wouldn't be quite as optimistic just yet.

nvrdunn
12-18-2014, 03:17 PM
Started digging on this today as I'm in progress of getting my mech done and was excited to see mech-warfare listed on the 2015 games list. BUT, since Andrew was still listed as a contact I reached out to him to check on a few questions I have and he said he's not involved with Robo Games 2015. So, I checked with Robo Games asking them what the deal is since the mech event is still listed and here is what i just got back:

"As of now, it's not happening. If the new owners of the arena want to do it, we will - but I haven't heard anything from them."

Looks like the mech event is so far a no-go even-though it's listed...

Chris

sthmck
12-18-2014, 05:11 PM
Started digging on this today as I'm in progress of getting my mech done and was excited to see mech-warfare listed on the 2015 games list. BUT, since Andrew was still listed as a contact I reached out to him to check on a few questions I have and he said he's not involved with Robo Games 2015. So, I checked with Robo Games asking them what the deal is since the mech event is still listed and here is what i just got back:

"As of now, it's not happening. If the new owners of the arena want to do it, we will - but I haven't heard anything from them."

Looks like the mech event is so far a no-go even-though it's listed...

Chris

There is going to be at least one official Mech Warfare event for 2015, although we have no immediate plans of organizing for robogames. Hopefully we can be back there in 2016.

nvrdunn
12-18-2014, 05:45 PM
Saw some of the posts about the one that will be hosted at the WV college, wish I could make it. Looking forward to when there is an event back here on the west coast. Looks like my son will be entering a Lego bot in the Robo Games, getting him started early. If there is event an event back here on the West coast I more than happy to assist with the event.

nvrdunn
12-18-2014, 06:57 PM
Looks like based on the email exchanges today both with Andrew and the folks at Robo Games, the Robo games site has been updated and the mech warfare events have been removed.