Nothing says “new season” like a visit to one of Team Duct Tape’s most enduring friends and benefactor, Paul Markun, of Tampa Technik. Mr. Markun, who has generously shared his wonderful workshop with TDT members since the team’s founding in 2008, and last season gifted us with a beautiful hand crafted robot cart to help us get around at the World Championship in Atlanta, welcomed TDT students again yesterday, and as always, it was an enriching visit in many ways.
Mr. Markun guided two of our team members in fabricating the baton dispensers for this season’s game, and in the process, turned the visit into an education in metrology – the science of measurement. The team members got some refresher practice in accurate measuring skills and tools, including the proper way to align a straight edge, correct use of calipers and combination squares, the use of gauge blocks and, just for fun, a look at an amazing, finely tuned dial test indicator used on a magnificent Starrett Tru-Stone granite surface plate that allowed for measurements to ridiculously minute degrees of accuracy.
Consequently, our baton dispensers are well-crafted things of beauty! And team members went home with a renewed appreciation for the fine art of precise measurement. Hopefully that sense of the beauty of precision and accuracy will carry over into robot design and construction!