ShepRobo Fest (cont. 2)

Posted: 03/29/2011 in Draco, Mech Warfare, Robogames, Rusty Wrench Robotics
Tags: , , ,

Day 3

Sunday was finally here, time for Mech Warfare competition.  The tournament was set, and ready to begin even if participants weren’t.  We had about 2-3 hours to put on all the finishing touches and get batteries charged for the upcoming matches.  Teams scrambled to get their mechs ready, and this is where I learned the most about mine.

Draco may have taken around a year, with tons of planning and trial and error, but nothing lets you know more about the robot then testing in competition situations.  This is why going down to West Virginia a few weeks before Robogames was so beneficial to me.  I tested my mech in the arena with Giger, and learned how terrible the Airsoft Tankguns really are.

  1. They are incredibly slow!  I was getting one shot off for every 15-20 that Giger was hitting me with.
  2. Accuracy is terrible!  It would take 5-8 shots on a non-moving target in order to zero in.  I don’t think robots will stand still for me to shoot them.
  3. They are so finicky.  Every other time they would jam up and nothing would come out.
  4. The motors did not like me at all!  The turret shot nicely for awhile and then just stopped sometime on Sunday.  I totally pulled off one of the two tank guns because of its inability to ever shoot a BB!

This helped me easily decide to go with a fully automatic airsoft gun.  The same kind of guns found on a lot of other mechs attending Robogames.  I guess thats the experience of veteran Mech Warfare competitors had over me.

Through the testing, it became visible that my mech was a little heavy.  Something that can be very troublesome if its very overweight, but Draco isn’t bad.  He was able to go about 11 minutes of full operation and then 2 of his leg servos would collapse from over heating trying to carry the weight.  That’s 11 out of the 12 minutes needed for a full Mech Warfare match.  A little leg position tweaking and hopefully I can make the whole 12 minutes then.

The matches themselves went okay at ShepRobo Fest.  Many of the competitors were still having problems with their mechs.  My first match, the opponent had some trouble walking, and he collapsed.  Second match was against a fully functional mech, and was going well, but then he lost his video feed and couldn’t continue.  My last match was against Giger, and just couldn’t contend with his firepower.  I was able to get around back of him a few times, but again, the airsoft tank guns are so terrible I only scored one or two hits.  In the end, I finished in 2nd place and came home with a cool trophy form ShepRobo Fest.  The knowledge I learned about my mech was the most useful though, and can help me to have better matches while at Robogames.

There are some nice write ups about ShepRobo Fest online from some local newspapers.

Here is a video put together of some of the matches down at ShepRobo Fest.  You can see Draco running around and getting shot at a lot.

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