Nightmare - BattleBots Season 2.0, San Francisco, CA
Whee! I got a milling machine! Well, a mill-drill, but it sure is a helpful tool in the shop!
This is the model I ended up with after countless ours of designing the new 'arms'.
This Quicktime VR of a model of Nightmare shows the basic shape that I designed before I started cutting anything. You'll notice that Nightmare ended up pretty much the same as this deisgn intended.
Just click anywhere in the box and drag to see the different angles (Quicktime v 4.0 or higher required)
I wanted to try something totally different with the extended drive 'arms' this time, something that combined the wide stance that Nightmare needed with the two front vertical 'legs' that supported the front of the bot during an impact. The new arms were to extend forward, while the pivot point was back towards the center of gravity. This took a lot of design and careful planning before I finally started cutting metal.
In this photo, I've got Nightmare (still with center support attached) testing the positioning of the new arms.
Another view of the initial layout testing. As the design progressed I started clamping pieces into position and welding them.
This version of Nightmare required a lot of creative weight displacement to get the new design to work, since the new 'arms' were heavier than the old crossbeam.
After removing the old crossbeam, I drilled several holes in the frame to help bring the weight down.
The part where the arms were to attach to the body needed to be extremely solid, it is at this point that the most stress would be focused, especially in the severe impacts with the weapon. This area got a lot of attention, probably even a little overkill...
Still checking the layout and clamping the pieces.
The front 'bumpers' were solid 3/4" thick aluminum, since they're the frontmost part of the bot, I wanted them to be very strong. I left them overhung to help protect the wheels from the front.
And the finishing touch, four steel spikes out the front. These were added to aid in pushing other robots, if it ever came to it. The spikes would be something to catch on the other bot.
At a half pound apiece, however, I was never actually able to compete with all four, I was always too close to the weight limit, so they were the first to go.
I created some new hubs for the wheels this time, I wanted to make sure there was no way a wheel was going to come off without taking the motor with it (which is what ended up happening, by the way)
The inside of Nightmare got an overhaul as well. To make room for the larger Vantec RDFR36, I had to extend the chassis upwards, protecting the top with a sheet of Lexan.
You can see one of the Hawker PC545 batteries here as well as the 10 horsepower weapon motor. Once again, that blue stuff is spray-on rubber, to help isolate the metal chassis from the electronics.