We did it!

The Arizona West Regional was an amazing success for the team! We not only qualified for championships via a wildcard system in finals but we also won the Excellence in Engineering Award. Some of the best teams in the world competed: The Holy Cows, The High Rollers, and Team Appreciate. Several of them have been to the top field at Championships, Einstein, before and are nationally recognized. Despite all of this we created and led the second seed alliance with our friends from last year, The Sabercats, as well as The Holy Cows.

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Because of our incredible success, we qualified for World Championships in St Louis. However, going to FIRST Championship is incredibly expensive and the team needs your support. In order for us to be able to attend the team needs to raise at a minimum $10,000 more dollars. We are an IRS-certified 501c3 nonprofit so any donation that can be made is tax deductible. The Bit Buckets are also eligible for Arizona School Tax Credit donations, for more information go to our sponsor us page, which is entirely free as it just allows you to choose who some of your state tax dollars go to. If you wish to help us, you can donate money here and remember that any donation that can be made would mean the world to us. Thank you for your support!

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Profiled For Excellent Design

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Please enjoy this excerpt about the Bit Buckets Robotics team in the book FIRST Robots: Behind the Design. Out of the 2900 teams that participated in FIRST last year they only chose 30 top-performing robots to profile, so we are very proud.

This book was published in January and a copy was sent to every FIRST Robotics Competition team in the kit of parts distributed at Kickoff. Pages 202-207 are entirely about our 2016 robot design while the next two pages in the pdf, 18 and 173, offer photos.

We are featured in the chapter on Computer Controlled Cutting Systems for innovative use of the Trotec Speedy 300 Laser Cutter in the creation of our plywood robot. This robot took first place at the 2015 AZ West Regional, earning the right to compete in the World Championship. It also won a Creativity Award and Engineering Excellence Award. We couldn’t have made such a groovy robot without Xerocraft Hackerspace!

If you want more information abut the robot design book or if you want to order a copy, here is a link to the book’s webpage.

To download the excerpt from the book, click here: Behind-the-Design-4183 (pdf, 9 pages, 8.5mb)

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2016 FRC Robot Reveal

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Progress in Build Season

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This year, the Bit Buckets are preparing early for the season ahead. The drive train is on the move and prototypes of an intake and scaler are in process. Bear with us.

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Vex team profiled in Bear Essential News

Bear Essential

Jordan, Sam and Howard enjoy their victory.

Jordan, Sam and Howard enjoy their victory.

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New Pit Attempt

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We are working on a new pit design.

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Join us at Tucson Tussle

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The Bit Buckets are excited to attend the Tucson Tussle this year. Tucson Tussle is an off-season event for robotics where teams from around Arizona compete with their previous year’s robot for the win. It is an easy-going event for old and new teams to get together, introduce new members, and practice for the upcoming year. Join us for a day of robot fun!

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Both VEX Robots Prototyped

The team with robots

The team with robots. Photo by Urs Utzinger.

The Bit Buckets VEX team will field two robots in competition this year. ShooterBot collected pyramids of balls and fires them using two spinning wheels. In this year’s game you can score 25 points if you lift your alliance partner robot 4 inches off the ground and 50 points to lift it 12 inches off the ground. Our LiftBot deploys a ramp for the partner robot to drive up, and we are building a scissor lift to elevate the alliance partner another 8 inches. LiftBot also has a catapult to score balls!

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Pumpkin Toss!

What’s more fun than launching pumpkins from a trebuchet that resembles a middle age siege machine? Almost nothing!

That’s why were excited that today was our first pumpkin toss meeting! We set up our trebuchet and did some test launches, and we still have some things to fix to make the launch angle better, but it tosses the “pumpkin” pretty far.

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The Design Subteam

What is small, wooden, hilarious, and walks? The correct answer is the new walking drive train that the design sub team decided to create as an off season project to help teach new member important skills such as CAD and to keep existing members skills sharp. They say don’t reinvent the wheel but we at the Bit Buckets decided to show the wheel who’s boss. Wheels may go faster, be more efficient, and be easier to work with but that is all irreverent once you factor in the sexiness that is a walking robot.  We are using the Theo Jansen linkage that allows for a robot to smoothly walk and move.  You can read more about the design here.

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