I started working on the DIY obstacle course for Pi Wars 2021
today. Paint roller trays look like a good obstacle. Unfortunately the wheels fell
off when I tried it!
Reliability Design Goal
One of the big lessons I took home from Pi Wars 2019 was the importance of
reliability. I really wanted to make Square One
robust and easy to repair. (This is one of the reasons why it looks rather
So Far, So Good
I’m really pleased with how it’s going. Square One has proven to
be pretty tough. It’s slithered off a few obstacles, back flipped,
rolled and rammed the wall a couple of times but nothing has
actually failed in use until now.
Admittedly, I fried some Raspberry Pis
during construction and I fought a long campaign against I2C errors
but nothing’s actually broken whilst driving.
So What Happened?
Each motor is bolted to a mounting bracket. The brackets are then
bolted to the chassis.
One of the motor bolts worked loose last week and jammed its wheel.
I had to take the wheel off to tighten this bolt. While I was
at it, I thought I’d check the other brackets as well. That meant
that I had to remove all 4 wheels.
The wheels are held in place with a couple of grub screws and it
seems that I didn’t tighten them properly, so the wheels fell off.
It was all a bit of an anti-climax really!
Now I come to think of it, I haven’t spent much time repairing
Square One. That’s left me with more time to build and test it.
It seems that reliability is valuable during development as well
as at Pi Wars.