Celebrating and Planning Ahead

Post Competition Celebration

Post Competition Celebration

TDT members enjoyed reflecting about last weekend’s qualifying competition and our PTC Design Award win, over cake and refreshments at Saturday’s meeting.  We discussed what worked:

  • teamwork,
  • team committment,
  • a great interview,
  • a pretty good Engineering notebook,
  • a sturdy robot with a sizeable hopper;

And what didn’t:

  • an unreliable collection system,
  • a slow shooter.

We’ll be weighing in with mentors in coming weeks, with a visit to Tampa Technik in St. Petersburg, where Mr. Paul Markun has offered to provide some tutorial guidance on belt tracking systems, and an opportunity to see a cool machine he designed, and a visit with the USF Racing Team, which has also offered some mentoring support.   Qzar laser tag and rock climbing are on the calendar, too – gotta have some fun down time!

Old bot comes apart

Old bot comes apart

Team members also want to improve their engineering notebook design, and work on some other organizational improvements.  We also discussed the importance of respecting not only the people we work with and one another, but the things we use and how vital it is to care properly for equipment, tools and resources. To that end, team members cleaned up and organized their tool box and parts collection, taking inventory of needed repairs and replacements.

We also took the opportunity to finish dismantling last year’s robot, which we’d originally hoped to preserve for demonstration purposes. But this year’s build proved so complex, that we ended up scavanging so many parts from it, that it was no longer viable as a demo bot. So it was lovingly dismantled, and the only remaining part — the bucket — was put up on the shelf with last year’s trophies.

Onward!  Next stop, Middleton High School’s Feb. 6 Qualifying Competition, and lots of journeying on the way!

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