Tag Archives: Backyard Workshop

Learning and Designing

Team Duct Tape members got down to some serious design work last weekend, and with a combination of rudimentary CAD and white board sketches, got a drive train solution and some other ideas under way.  They also got in a great visit to the Jamie Cunningham’s Backyard Workshop – exactly what it sounds like, but in the front yard!

Team members enjoyed seeing Mr. Cunningham’s great homemade 3D printer, learning about aluminum sand casting (awesome!) , and seeing his (also homemade!) CNC machine in action, cutting out a big foam letter “T” for Learning is for Everyone‘s upcoming TEDxYouth@TampaBay event.  Mr. Cunningham’s resourcefulness and creative approaches to engineering problem solving were both fun and inspiring!

Team members also got in some Robot C tutoring with mentor and TDT grad, Chris Willingham.

It was a pretty full meeting, and there’s another one coming up tomorrow, with our build finally underway, and our ring order finally in, so we can properly test prototypes.

TDT 5.0 may be mostly new to FIRST Tech Challenge, but they’re proving completely up to the challenge of a quality robot build, in the finest Team Duct Tape tradition!


Plans Take Shape & a Visit from George and Barack

TDT members went to work Saturday sharing prototypes and sketches, and discussing ideas for the new season build.  With an all-new team, most fresh to the FIRST experience, just getting started is a big challenge.  But team members gamely jumped in, seriously considering one another’s ideas and weighing in with some thoughtful insights.

TDT founding member, Chris Willingham, now a team mentor, introduced the group to CAD basics, and we learned we’re a few parts short of a basic build, so we’ve got some things on order.  Hopefully, we’ll be able to get a basic drive train underway at our next meeting, before we head out to visit the nearby Backyard Workshop, to learn about some cool machines and tools and see some CNC work underway for sponsor Learning is for Everyone’s TEDxYouth@TampaBay event.

Some team members will also be joining in the local Societyof Manufacturing Engineers group tour of the SS American Victorythis week.  We’re looking forward to

Barack and George, demonstrating Gracious Professionalism!

reconnecting with the SME, whose long time academic and fiscal support of Team Duct Tape is deeply appreciated!

We also enjoyed having Barack and George, a visiting pair of tan and white sibling poodles, at our meeting. They set the gold standard for Gracious Professionalism in a way we can only hope the parties of their namesakes can rise to achieve.  And they were pretty good role models for us, too!