Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
Online Challenges

91A 45 Degree C-Channel Coupler

11

Max Johnson91A
Entry ID #: 8985
Created: Tue, Dec 8, 2020 9:22 AM


        For the 2020/21 Vex Robotics Competition, my team and I decided to make an X-Holonomic drive train for all of the benefits that come with that design. The issue that most teams come upon is finding the best approach to constructing a holonomic due to the currently available hardware that Vex offers which is primarily limited to the 45-degree gusset. 

        To solve this issue, we designed and printed the 45 Degree C-Channel Coupler. This piece is based on the same design characteristics of the C-Channel Coupler where it will fit inside of 2 C-Channels and create more mounting opportunities for the base as well as a stronger build with a sturdier design than the alternative 45-degree gusset. 

        The 45 Degree C-Channel Coupler can be used, and is primarily designed for use on holonomic bases but can also be used in any other situation in which a bend is required. In the example attached to this submission, you can see the part being used in a holonomic base as well as an intake from Vex Change-Up.

        To use the coupler, a team will align 2 C-Channels at a 45-degree angle and then insert the coupler into the concave side of the connecting C-Channels. The user will then use 8-10 screws in order to fasten the coupler to the C-Channels. There are many adaptations that a team can make to this design however with the use of techniques such as boxing, 1x1 half-cut C-Channels, and many more advanced construction methods that teams use. 

        In this challenge, I used Autodesk Inventor 2021. To create this part, I used parametric modeling based on CAD models released by Vex. I used several different sketches on different faces in order to best create the part. 

        I started by front face sketches and extrusions based on the dimensions of a C-Channels where I was able to then mirror these extrusions to have the completed part. I continued by adding fillets and chamfers to finish the model. 

        I then opened an assembly to create possible use visualizations and renders of the different uses for the part that we modeled. I also used Autodesk Inventor Studio for these renders. 

        From this project, I was able to continue growing my skills in using Autodesk Inventor. In the past, I had modeled parts however this one was much more intricate to make since it had to follow dimensions of the Vex ecosystem. I will continue using Inventor and other CAD programs in order to design our team’s robots with them as well as model parts for 3D printing as well. This software is super useful for designing robots as we plan all of our robots in Autodesk Inventor so it is easy to assemble from there as well as it makes it easier to prototype. 

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