NAME: 18 Wheeler
    YEAR: 2009
    TAGLINE:"Nobody Moves Without My Permission"

  • Ranking and Awards:

    Los Angeles Regional:

    26 out of 60
  • Drivetrain:

    Direct Drive
    14 wheel drive
    Andymark Kit C-Channel Frame
    Hard plastic tire 6 inch wheels with minimal traction
    1 CIM motors per drive wheel
  • Mechanism:

    chain drive/direct drive
    PVC Barrel ball collector and ejector
    Polycord ball elevator
  • Software and Control

    Language: Ni LabView
    Driver interface: Dual Logitech Game Controllers
    Tank Drive Controls
  • Autonomous function:

    Drive straight forward and pin the oposing robot accross from it to allow human player to score.
    Reliability: 90%


  • Field:

    Entire field covered in "Regolith" (really a white bumpy bathroom wall covering with very little friction) Robots forced to use hard plastic wheels to minimize traction on the field. Each robot pulls a scoring trailer.

    Primary Scoring:

    Robots collect spindley balls called moon rocks and try to put them in the opposing aliance trailers. 2 points for each moonrock or empty cell in an opponents trailer.

    Bonus Endgame:

    A special "empty cell" colored ball may be fed to the robot from one of the mid field human player stations. If the robot delivers it to the human player at one of the ends of the field, it may be exchanged for a supercell in the last 20 seconds of the match, which is worth 15 points if it is scored.

    Autonomous Scoring:

    There was no bonus for autonomous scoring. However, Robots are lined up in front of an opposing alliance's human player station so if it did not move, the human player could score on them freely. Therefore most robots used dodging strategies in their autonomous mode.


    (Each penalty ideducts 10 points from the alliance) Human Player throwing moonrocks around the side of the wall, Robots throwing moonrocks over the wall, Empty cells entering play any way other than through the hole in the middle human player stations or being put into play after being exchanged for supercells, Touching the supercell early or without having an empty cell (2 penalties), Descoring a ball. Note: there are no Pinning penalties in this game.
  • Download the Game Animation here.

Coach's Notes

    This was one of our best built robots. It did everything we we had on our design wishlist. It could collect off the floor, shoot out the top into trailers, and manuver as well as any other robot on the field. Its only weakness was some inaccuracy with its ball ejector. It sprayed balls with no aim so only some would go into the target trailer.

    The 14 wheel drive was laughed at by many people, including us. But we had trust in our drive train mentor and put it on anyway. The result really did not give our robot better manuverability or acceleration than the other robots. However, it could push ANY robot around and because of the lack of pinning penalty, it could hold any robot against the wall indefinitely. (With the exception of omni drive robots, we could still push them, but they could always weasel out of a pin.) This made our robot very useful on any alliance. We could hold opponents in place while our alliance partner scored on their trailer.

    This robot was not picked for any alliance in the quarter finals. It wasn't the first time or the last we were overlooked and while we were always disappointed, we understood. That year it was much harder to take. We had built the best robot in team history up to that point, it had performed exactly as we had hoped, and we had been instrumental in the 4 wins we had. But we were not chosen, and clearly the 8 seeding teams who were choosing had reasons for picking the robots they did. It felt like our worst defeat. Not in points, or in robot failures, but in knowing we had something really good, and being overlooked.