Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
Inspiring students, one robot at a time.

Cut C-Channel


Entry ID #: 6446
Created: Tue, Jan 15, 2019 9:19 AM

1.0 Introduction The key component of any VEX robot is its metal. While the 2, 3 and 5 by c-channels are very versatile and strong, the full pieces are often not needed. This means that teams are adding unnecessary weight to their robots which can slow them down. Recently our team has cut some of our c-channels in half in order to reduce weight where the rigidity of a full piece is not needed. However, this process can be very time consuming because one must file down all of the sharp corners. In addition, not every team has access to a Dremel and so this solution can be impossible for some teams to implement. 2.0 The Part Please look at the attached files to see renders of the part. In addition, you can see renders of how one might use the part. We have also attached pictures of how we have used this part for our robot.  3.0 Finite Element Analysis We conducted Finite Element Analysis or FEA on the cut metal and the noncut part so that we could compare the deflection and stresses the different parts. We utilize the Autodesk Inventor built-in Stress Analysis environment to apply forces and constraints to the part, in order to simulate real-world stresses. We decided to apply 2.0-pound forces to the end of each part in order to simulate a real-world example. Look at the included images to see the FEA results.  4.0 Conclusion While the displacement is about half an inch under 2 pounds, this part does allow robots to conserve a lot of weight. The displacement can be mitigated by good build quality. Also, the most useful place for this part is on the lift which is normally doubled up which would mean less displacement overall.  

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