Engineering Notebook


After Ultimate Goal ended, we built our robot chassis with the extra time we had.

6/11 - 8/7

Every other week, we have been organizing and planning for the season, both online and then in-person when school begun. In this time, the most significant things we have crossed are: the completion of our sponsorship packet, the recruiting of four new members, and the finalizing and ordering our team T-shirts.

After School Work

9/7 - First Day of After School Practice

Attendance: Aren, Carlos, Jordan, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani

Kyle and Jordan practiced and built a three-wheeled mini-bot with the help of Aren and Logan. Kai coded some of the movements with the help of Mr. Han and Makani. The three (Kai, Jordan, and Kyle) very quickly learned the basics.


Aren, Carlos, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani

Makani was teaching Kai how to code the servos. Logan and Carlos sorted out the motors, servos, and electronics. We also coded our GoBilda robot, which is our main robot for the season, with a POV style of control. Kai, Jordan, and Kyle completed their mini-bot and practiced driving for the first time. Kyle and Jordan especially practiced maneuvering the mini-bot to carefully pick up and put back a hung ring.


Aren, Carlos, Kai, Kyle, Jordan, Logan, Makani

Jordan and Kyle disassembled their robot. Kai coded the robot to move side to side and eliminated the slide of the robot’s movement. That made it easier to drive because of the highly increased accuracy.


Aren, Jordan, Kai, Kamalu, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We assembled four vertical bars onto the chassis of our robot.


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kamalu, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We moved equipment and supplies from Damon Hall to Mr. Hans room. Due to COVID restrictions, we moved out of Damon Hall (our usual robotics home) and relocated into the other robotics room up the hill. We’ve tidied and rearranged the room to accompany our team’s needs. Included are the power tools, chargers, carts that we put together, and more. A loose wheel has also been tightened.


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kamalu, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We received our T-shirts and took both of our individual and group photos. After, we fixed an unevenness in our robot. It turned out that it was due to the plexiglass sheet on the underside which forced the metal to bend.


Aren, Carlos, Jordan, Logan, Makani

We spent the majority of the time building the linear slides since the rest of the parts came today. Makani and Aren split time with us and the freshman team.


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We've purchased spray paint, stencils, super glue, and wire tubing. We spray-painted our robot with a blue background, pink numbers, and black and white splatter dots. We then continued working on the linear slide systems.


Aren, Carlos, Jordan, Kamalu, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We almost finished up making the linear system itself, but we had some issues with building and had to redo most of it because of tiny mistakes. The linear systems were screwed on without one washer, the wrong length of screws were used, etc. It was not a particularly productive day because of this. Aren and Makani were helping out the freshman team, team Glitch Tech.


Aren, Jordan, Kamalu, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

Aren helped us but also helped with Glitch Tech. We are still finishing up the linear systems, with only the attachment of the lines to go for one. Makani worked on that. For the other, we are missing some pieces and have to order others that we need. We got other new parts for our robot. Once we opened up our new parts, we started to replace the old U channel with the new smaller ones to make our robot smaller so that it would fit through the gap between the barrier and the wall. We’ve also added an LGBTQ+ pin to our robot. We ordered new parts off of Amazon. We had to move around a few things on the robot due to the smaller U channel. We tested the new layout of our robot to see if it worked, and it barely does. We all do not want to leave it at "barely", although there is not much we can do about it.


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We tried and successfully untied the knot from our linear system. To fix it, Makani simply cut the line off. Additionally, the robot was driven as practice. An intake design was proposed and now we need the materials for it.


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

While building the linear system we forgot a spring. We had to take a few things off so we could put on the string and then put back on the things we took off. We came up with ideas for our intake, and after settling on one, we started working on it.


Aren, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

We completed it and we now only have to attach it to the robot, for the intake at least. We started to code the linear system. We've also finally started on the second linear system since we now have the parts that we need.


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Jordan, Kai, Logan, Makani, Savannah.

We attached the carousel spinner, worked on the claw, and started coding the carousel spinner.


Aren, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kamalu, Logan, Makani, Savannah

Kamalu, Ellis, and Ezra took the driver's test. Carlos and Makani continued to work on the claw but we realized halfway through building it that it isn’t needed. We figured that using a magnet instead would be much easier and probably more efficient.


Aren, Carlos, Kyle, Logan, Makani

We attached the intake and further yet thought of ways we can attach our arm and box.


Aren, Carlos, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani

We coded the carousel spinner, added the piece to stabilize the intake axel, and attached an attachment to the linear slide to then attach our box. We’ve also reshaped the game element’s opening so that it more easily fits onto the shipping hub.


Aren, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani

We attached the team element arm and put a magnet on it. We thought that the arm swung too wildly so we reduced it's speed by using gears; it also made it easier to control. Despite it, we did not end up using it in our practices and our first games because of the fact that the team element arm was too hard to control and the whole scoring with our team element was much trickier than we initially thought.


Aren, Kyle, Logan, Makani

We adjusted the intake so that it lets cargo in easier. We then prepared and packed everything up so that we can work on the robot out of school during the following weekend.


Aren, Kyle, Logan, Makani

On this Sunday, we wanted to work on the robot on our own time so that we can get things done ASAP. We: experimented with and redesigned a different intake system before settling on a design where our rubber star is attached to a freely-rotating thing that rotates on two servos on both sides. Makani coded it as well.


Aren, Carlos, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani

Today, we were on a bit of a crunch. We recoded one of our driving codes and replaced our 3D-printed box (the one that holds the cargo) with real parts. We also attached a touch sensor for the team element arm, and added stoppers to the intake so that it does not drag on the floor. Also, we coded the intake to do that same function as what the stoppers do and shortened the length of the intake. In other words, the intake did not reach further out and therefore was able to spin in cargo closer to our box. It also has the benefit of making it easier to fit under the 18 cubic-inch restriction during the robot's starting position. We also toyed with the idea of replacing our team element arm magnet with an electromagnet. It was so that we could attach and detach our team element with more ease, by simply turning the electromagnet off or on. Alas, we had to discard that idea because we found out that electromagnets were considered illegal. They weren't specified in the legal parts list, and even if they were, the electromagnet would have to be connected to our robot battery. For that reason, we could not have a way to really turn it off, destroying our purpose of the electromagnet anyways.


Aren, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

Since our first games were the next day, we solely focused on practicing. We practiced and practiced. We settled on Jordan being the driver and Logan being the controller (the one who controls the mechanisms).


Aren, Carlos, Ellis, Ezra, Jordan, Kai, Kyle, Logan, Makani, Savannah

Throughout the day, we practiced even more. After school, we then started our games. Our scores (in chronological order) were 75, 81, 75, 87, 107, and 63. Our game recordings can be found under "16374, Team MEAF" in Game Recordings.

11/4, 11/5

We improved our autonomous code with Kai. We've spectated and cheered on other teams that still were playing their games. As a side project, we have also been spending some time reconstructing the Lego Mindstorm Rubix-Cube-solving robot since it has gotten taken apart. For the next Tuesday, we decided that we will play more games. This mirrors last season in which we tried to submit as many scores as we could so that we could have a better selection of scores. In other words, since only the top ten scores out of our entire seasonal games will actually be submitted, we would want to get the scores that are the best out of the best.

Rest of the season and afterwards

Our last scores were submitted, along with our scores for the League Tournament and State Championship (for Hawaii). Our highest score was 148. We will not hear of our final position until around March.