Watching Week 1

We have been learning a lot from reveal videos and week one competitions. With that knowledge we have decided to make some modifications to our robot.  We ended up at 99lbs right before bag day so we have some weight to play with.  Here are some of the things we considered:

Options for robot modifications
– add non actuated intake arms
– add actuated intake arms
– modify intake plastic tabs
– modify intake arm plastic tabs
– modify intake ramp
– add feeder robot
– add 2 container auton device
– add 4 container auton device
– add side tote pickup

The team has been doing some prototyping and CAD modeling to figure out how we want to proceed. Here are some CAD Images.


The team has also picked up 2 new sponsors; The Renewable Energy Corporation and National Metal Fabricators. Thanks for joining the team.


The team has also been hard at work learning from this year’s build season.

– working robot before end of build season
– time to test
– better division of responsibility
– more organized

– behind schedule
– should have robot before week 5
– too much waiting on parts
– need more organization
– need more tasks for each person each day
– need a more specific schedule
– seniors did not show up consistently
– people did not work as much as they could have when they were there
– single copy of CAD

– have an assignment board
– use more due dates and deadlines
– need 3 student CAD people
– need students design integrate who can distribute tasks
– have CAD machine in the design lab (or laptops who can handle CAD)
– more fund raising
– Improved org structure, with roles and responsibilities defined
– clear plan for students to do work (spread the knowledge at the beginning of the build season
– have the integrator at the lab consistently
– reduce the knowledge gap both before and during build season
– meet more often in fall
– get forms and safety test done sooner in the fall

– waiting for parts
– playing blame game
– leaving unfinished work
– not cleaning up your own mess
– not handing off projects to people who are staying in the lab



We are Bagged

The bot is ready to go. We did some final testing and calibrating today and we were able to get some seriously good stacking speeds.  Just how good…well you will have to wait for the reveal video to find out.

Thanks to all of the parents, mentors and sponsors for your help, energy, time and resources to get us to this point.  Now we are on to the practice and modification phase of the season.

Good luck to all of the teams.

Bag Day is a Snow Day

Yesterday we had 5 hours of coding and drive practice. Today…We get to watch the snow fall for a few hours.  We will get 6 hours from 2 – 8 today thanks to the Bannockburn Clubhouse.  As bad as we feel about not getting some time on the robot, we feel worse for the New England teams who have had almost 2 weeks of snow days. We can only imagine the number of teams doing garage builds up there.  On the bright side we built 2 stacks with containers, 3 stacks with containers and 4 stacks with container yesterday. We have some alignment issues we are working on but all in all we will probably be a good 30-50 pt per match bot.

Here are some images from the past few weeks to get you ready for our reveal video later this week.



2 More Days

The team has been hard at work tweaking the robot this week. Fixing things to improve our efficiency at loading totes in.  The drive team and Code team have had their hands full getting the robot in working condition.  The team also made a big decision as it related to their secondary priorities.  The team will add intake arms but not an H0drive.  The time it would take o add an H-drive would have significantly reduced practice and code time.  We also had a visit from our chief robot inspector who was checking out the team’s intake mechanism.

This week the team also had two events; a Chipotle fundraiser and a lab open house. The team raised over $300 and had nearly 3 dozen visitors to the lab between those two events.

Also the team turned in its awards!!! Thanks to Samad for doing most of the lifting. We are very impressed by your dedication.


This up coming week the team will be practicing, practicing and practicing before we bag up the robot on tuesday at midnight.



The robot is alive!!!

The team nailed down priorities for week  at the driver and coder meeting first thing this morning. Then we got down to work getting the competition bot driving!!!

Needs a few things tweeked, but so far so good.


Also, the award drafts are done and being reviewed!!!. This was a productive weekend that is by far the best build season our team has seen in a while. Here are some photos from today of the team just getting it done.

Its getting closer

Driving practice and competition bot… That has summed up the week so far.

The team has been hard at work on the auton code, the IR sensor mounts, the robot wiring, the electrical board, finishing the structure and writing awards.  Thus should be the weekend the our lifter comes to life… Muh Hu Ha Ha. The word on the street is that the robot may be named “Chen,” we will have to see how that plays out.

We had some middle schoolers stop by this week to check out what the Whitman robotics club has to offer.  They were pretty smart…can’t wait till they join the team.  Speaking of joining the team, next week we have a Chipotle Fund raiser will have the lab open for visitors.


There are some videos from this week added to the 2015 build playlist.


Things are coming together this week.

We ran into a few issues and have missed our Monday driving deadline. But, we fixed a few things and improved our electronics package. Should be driving the main bot by wed, till then our drive team uses the practice bot to get their skills up.


Come Visit the lab and see our 2015 robot

Open Robotics Lab Night Wednesday, Feb. 11:  How would you build a robot that could maneuver a field, pick up trash and move and stack totes? The Walt Whitman Robotics team invites you to visit their lab as they design, build and program a robot to do all those things.  Drop by Whitman Room D-218 on Wednesday, February 11th between 4-7:00 pm, to see the team at work during their six week “build” for the prestigious national FIRST FRC robotics competition.  Click here  to view this year’s FIRST robotics challenge.


Chipotle fundraiser to support Walt Whitman Robotic Team 1389

Make dinner a selfless act by joining us for a fundraiser to support Walt Whitman Robotic Team 1389. Just come into the 7600 Old Georgetown Rd Chipotle on Monday, February 9th, from 5:00pm to 8:00pm. Bring in this flyer, show it on your smartphone or tell the cashier you’re supporting the cause to make sure that 50% of the proceeds will be donated to Walt Whitman Robotic Team 1389.


Week 5 Has Started and we are 50% done building.

Good progress was made today; the lift tray is nearly complete, the long lifter legs are almost done, the lift drive members are drilled and the drive train is nearly done being modified to a mullet drive.   Things are looking good for Monday as the day we will drive and operate the lift for the first time.  If we hit that mile stone we are going to add an H-drive component and intake arms to the bot if we have the weight.  Keeping fingers crossed for Monday.

We added a few videos to our 2015 build playlist today as well.

The drive team was able to get together and nailed down all of our autonomous modes.  The team has also decided to try and get an IMU working to make some of our more challenging auton modes more likely to be successful. Let the programming begin.


Something else that the drive team talked about, was a way to pick up 2 containers off the step in auton.  It looks like this will be our week1-4 development project that may allow us to kick it up a notch at the DC regional.

17 days left…..getting excited!!!