What’s 1529 up to?

The Southport CyberCards are just now entering their third week of the 2016 FRC Stronghold competition, and after planning out their robot, building prototypes, and testing them out, they are moving on to the next stage of their Build Season: the “Things are Getting Serious” stage.

We won’t elaborate on what the Media Team is doing, because obviously, you already know, SO we will move on to other sub-groups such as CAD, Electrical, VEX, Mechanical, Coding, Business, Spirit, and even Mentors. Fun stuff, really.IMG_6855[1] <—us right now


Finished and doing-

  • Has the basis for the arm and intake done
  • Geometry Reference dimensions done
  • Calculating diameter of gears and sprockets using gear ratio so they can figure out what exactly they are going to use
  • Arm and design troubleshooting


  • fixing height of arm because it could potentially mess with the bumper and break rules
  • maintaining the lightweight aspect of the robot
  • telescoping arm fixing



Finished and doing-

  • programming ball intake
  • color sensors set up for carpet for use in autonomous
  • arm movement


  • working with encoders for the motors
  • figuring what coding to use for different positions of the arm that need more motor power



Finished and doing-

  • making buttons
  • finding certain accessories online that we could use for cheering on our team at competitions
  • making a banner or team


  • fitting all of this into a $100 budget
  • managing costs



Finished and doing-

  • wire placing practice
  • planning where things are going to go
  • Zhuling, head of the electrical team, is making a bumper design and recruiting people to make it


  • Nothing really



Finished and doing-

  • prototyping lift
  • practice chassis


  • remaking design is just hard and time consuming (nothing really)IMG_6987[1]


Finished and doing-

  • spreading knowledge of safety
  • enforcing rules
  • making posters
  • preparing a quiz about what is on the posters, just in general, and what is in the safety manual


  • making people wear safety glasses in the workshop
  • finding appropriate memes so it will be easier to read the posters and retain their messageIMG_6797[1]


What they have been doing-

  • tool training
  • finding projects that involve learning how to use tools you wouldn’t normally use
  • teaching sharing and communication for when even more sub groups are made and tools and things are limited
  • teaching them how to properly formulate and ask questions to their peers so they can get clearer answers
  • keeping everyone in line and making sure they are working efficiently (30 minute checks)
  • setting deadlines
  • mentoring leadership groupsIMG_6793[1].JPG


What they have been doing-

  • competition!!!
  • prep for the competition


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Build Season Week 2

Team Recap- Rapid Fire!

Mechanical- Finishing Intake/Outake prototype that can attach to practice robot. Also they are still waiting on the finalized design for the real Intake.


Safety- Come up with safety posters. And use information for a safety quiz that is mandatory for all people who want to enter the workshop.


Electronics- Wire practice robot. Once they are finished with that they will then begin discussing electrical placement.


Programming/Control- Finish up the code for the practice robot. Then they shall begin writing pseudo code for the real robot. Then begin figuring out the controls for the robot.


Strategy- Review the Game and make sure everything is set for the team. Then they shall practice how the human player affects our game play.

IMG_6842[1] IMG_6836[1]

CAD- Concept validation on design space for the arm and the intake system. Followed by preliminary sketching of the telescopic arm for scaling the castle walls


VEX- Big Competition Tomorrow, get ready!


Media- Working on Chairman’s Video and Essay. Due Date is Feb. 4th


On to Saturday!

– KT

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The CyberCards have been Busy Bees

This year, we have eight different groups working on separate parts of the new robot. All were asked the question “what have you done so far in this build season and what do you plan to get done.”

Mechanical is run by Jeremy. He says that his group have been working on prototyping the shooter and the intake set-up.

The second mechanical group is run by CJ. He says that his group has been cutting the practice chassis pieces, assembling said practice chassis, and assembling the gear boxes.

The electrical group is run by Zhuling. She says that she and her group have been wiring the prototype robot, taking the components off of old robots, testing the components to see which ones are working and which ones aren’t, giving the working components to the practice robot, and color-coding the components so that if something breaks or stops working, they can trace the problem back to it’s source.

The programming team is run by Dylan, and they have been working on how the robot will operate during autonomous mode, and making the practice robot “go vroom vroom,” or move, says Dylan himself.

The safety team, run by Lyndsey, has been designing posters to hang in the shop and in the pit, to remind us the importance of safety. She is also working on a safety quiz.

Controls is run by Austin R. and they have decided that they are going to use light sensors and where and how they are going to go on the robot.

CAD is run by Torey, and he says that his group is working on a constrained chassis, the dimensions for the bumper and the frame perimeter, the arm intake system, and what the overall design needs to look like.

And finally, media. Run by Austin, they have been working on the Woody Flowers Essay, the Chairman’s essay, the judges presentation, and getting the blog up and running again.


1529 has been busy, and will continue to be until build season ends!


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Yeah prototypes! 2016 FIRST Stronghold

On January 15th, the team came together and identified the different prototypes they wanted to research and test.

The team determined that we wanted to check the following types of prototypes:

  • Passive defense object (manipulates defense)
  • Ball pickup rollers vertical
  • Ball pickup horizontal
  • Ball pickup wheels
  • Ball pickup tube like design
  • Ball pickup conveyor
  • Passive Scaling Mechanisms
  • Active Scaling Mechanisms
  • Elevator Mechanism

Students did research and found examples of different prototypes.

On Saturday, the team split into three different prototyping groups.

  • Controls:
    • color sensors for automated driving
    • pseudocode for robot
    • set up github for 2016
  • Rollers:
    • Grip tested with different wheels, tapes, surgical tubing and pool noodles/litter
    • Developed horizontal and vertical prototypes of roller claw for boulder manipulation.
    • Pool noodle with horizontal orientation with 1 in. compression on boulder was best fit.
  • Elevator:
    • Prototyped 3 different lift mechanisms.
    • two were pneumatic based, one with a winch and one without, both however, dealt with a piston moving an inner piece that would slide a hook
    •  the last dealt with a mix of a telescopic and cascading lift, driven with chain and sprocket and slid against each other with bearings.
    • Now currently researching telescopic lifts from team 233 and 27

So far a group of highly talented parents have completed 4 out of 7 of the defenses we need to test our prototypes with. THANK YOU PARENTS!





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2016 FIRST Stronghold Strategy

Hi FriendsWithRobots,

After a week of knowing what this years FRC game is, we have finally figured out our strategy and planned out our priorities for the 2016 competition. Thought you might wanna know, so here’s our strictly professional blog post.

When it comes to our priorities, we have come to the conclusion that our robot will be able to;

  1. Pass inspection
  2. Move
  3. Be built by us
  4. Breach (40-50 pts)
  5. Shoot Low Goal (2pts x 8 balls =16pts) Which is driver dependent (aka. they need to practice hard)
  6. Scale (10pts + ranking pt)



Now that we have figured these out, we have moved onto what defenses we need to weaken in order to accomplish a BREACH. These in order of importance are,

1. Portcullis-Cheval de Frise
2. Moat-Ramparts
3. Drawbridge-Sally Port
4. Rock Wall-Rough Terrain
5. Low BarIMG_6640


As for the dimensions and accessories, we have deduced that the robot will be,

  1. Less than or equal to 24 inches wide
  2. Less than or equal to 14 inches tall (BECAUSE TRIG)

Then what we will have,

  1. Fluffy 8 inch pneumatic tires
  2. And a… Deployable Thingy-ma-bob? Who put that there??? (aka. undecided design)


Follow the team on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/FRC 1529 and twitter via @FRC1529.

We will update next week on our strictly serious blog, so look forward to it!- M.R.




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2016 FRC Kickoff!

FIRST STRONGHOLD is a robotics competition in which an alliance, or a group of three robots, has to pass through opponents fortifications, bring down their tower with ‘boulders’, and finally capture the opposing alliances tower.

In FIRST STRONGHOLD, two Alliances of three robots each are on a Quest to breach their opponents’ fortifications, weaken their tower with boulders, and capture the opposing tower. Robots score points by breaching opponents’ defenses and scoring boulders through goals in the opposing tower. During the final 20 seconds of the Quest, robots may surround and scale the opposing tower to capture it.

This is our teams reaction to the 2016 game.

This is a twitter tweet made by IndianaFIRST about the Southport High School.


FRC Kickoff Tweet

Find more information on these sites.




FRC 1529 is excited and ready to begin build season and compete with other teams!


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Saturday Week 3 2015

Hi FriendsWithRobots,

As we cruise through the midpoint of the build season, we take a look back at our accomplishments and look ahead at our future challenges.

So far, we’ve constructed a Tote Chute, Litter Chute, Step, and Scoring Platform.  We’ve come up with an overall robot design, have assembled our chassis, and even had some parts fabricated by our friends at Fab2Order.

Our robot design is heavily influenced by the Team Indiana entry from the 72-hour robot build teams.  As it happens, it is similar to this design posted on Chief Delphi, in that we will accept totes from the tote chute, through the back of our robot.  We’ll stack them two at a time, building up to six high.

The special feature of our robot is the recycling container manipulators.  Our robot will feature two arms, one on each side of the robot, that can passively grab RCs under the lid.  Each arm can lift vertically and rotate horizontally.  We will lift and swing a RC into our elevator and place it on our stack.  We’ll then build our stack under the RC and place it on the Scoring Platform for 36-42 points, and repeat.  We’re confident that we can score 108 points per match (126 points with Litter) with this routine.

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