Motorama 05
Motorama 2006
2006 Nationals
Motorama 2007
Carolina Combat
Franklin 07
Wreck the Halls
Motorama 2008
Robot Rumble 2009
Motorama 2010

Robot Assault 2003

Picture courtesy of the SECR

Robot Assault was going to be Team Rolling Thunders big event of 2003 but things did not go as planned.

We had intended to field  robots in the Heavyweight, Middleweight, 12lb and Ant weight classes. The Heavyweight, Xtreme impaX was complete with its new more powerful drive train and its new, much larger teeth, Marks, Man O War had done  reasonably well at NCRSFIV and was expected to do well after fixing a couple of small problems, Andrews 12lber Cheep shot was entered mainly for fun and to give him his first taste of competing and finally the Ant was  to have had its first fights.

Mark fell seriously ill a few weeks before the competition and was unable to attend with Man O War but thankfully has since made a good recovery and will be back.

We arrived in  Hendersonville, NC at about 8pm on the Friday after a five hour drive from Cary and unloaded all the Bots. I spent the next few hours making sure everything worked and getting the bots through most of the safety  inspections. All passed without problems and at around midnight I headed back to the Motel to join the rest of the family.

The next morning we arrived early to help out completing the Arena. Andrew and I nailed 2x4  strips around the top edges to seal a gap. Once the arena was complete we were one of the first to test a bot in it as we had to show that Xtreme impaX was maneuverable and could spin up and down safely. The floor was  very slippery and I had problems with wheel spin but the practice spinup went well with the dish showing little or no balance problems even at full speed.

Cheep Shot competed first against VBT12.

VBT12  has a vertical disk whist Cheep Shot is a slowish pushy bot so all Andrew could do was try to be as aggressive as possible and try to stop the blade spinning and hope something broke. Cheep Shot was thrown a couple of  times and took everything VBT12 could give with little apparent real damage and then VBT12 got high sided on a flaw in the floor. I made the mistake in telling Andrew to push him off as I had thought there was no  "Two stops and you're out" rule at RA. In the event it probably made no difference as he did not get stuck again and went (deservedly) on to win on points. Andrew had really enjoyed his first fight and was not  disappointed at losing. See a short video of the fight here (6MB .mov file)

Xtreme impaX against Pinchpoint

Next fight for us was Xtreme impaX v Pinchpoint. We had got a bye in the first round and had watched  Pinchpoint in its first fight and thought that we would have a good chance of beating it. Pinchpoint has two contra-rotating disks on the front and a steep wedge on the back. They tried to rush us at the start but Xi  had enough time to get away and spun up and then caught them a solid blow causing a large gash in the top edge on one of his sides. The rest is pretty much a blur, I think they tried their disks on us but one got caught  in one of the holes in the skirt getting severely bent and jamming it solid. The fight looked like it was going well when suddenly the dish lost power and a plume of smoke came out the top! Xtreme impaX spent the rest  of the bout being pushed around and seemed unable to steer in a straight line. Again we lost on points. See a short video of the fight here (5MB .mov file)

At first I thought the  problem had just been a shorting battery but after a while it was found that both boschs were burnt out and the the Vantec was dead on one side. Xi's competition was over. It looks like the brushes on one of the DeWalts  had come out and shorted against the chassis and blown the Vantec and perhaps briefly fed as much as 60V to the Boschs. A couple of tiewraps and a better battery retaining bar would perhaps have prevented both. 

 Just after the defeat by Pinchpoint it was the turn of the Ant. We gave it a last minute test and it refused to move. The weapon still spun up but it appeared to the Sozbots controller was dead. This was getting  depressing!

There was a long break on Saturday afternoon when the Thunderstorm from hell dropped several inches of water which ended up flooding the arena and the pits. heroic efforts by the EO and staff got both  drained and cleaned up and fighting restarted.

Cheep shot versus 12lbs of Irritation

12lbs of Irritation is a pretty impressive twin vertical spinner and his first hit on Cheep shot tore a large chunk of the front  scoop (so much for foamed Lexan!) but again Andrew put up a good fight until we were flipped. The Bot was designed to run upside down by the Toy RC signal was too weak so we had to Tap out. Andrew again enjoyed his  fight and even signed the broken off piece of the scoop for a young fan.

All our bots were out so we spent Sunday just watching the battles. There were a lot of really good fights with the small drum bots like Alos  and Solaris putting up good shows and Team Logicoms new "Shrederator" performing well despite some teething problems.

Another rain storm with high winds caused another break and since we had a long run home  we left at about 5pm before all the finals were complete. It had been a depressing Saturday for me after Xi had gone out expensively but Andrews comment that it had been the best day of his life (he's only Ten!) made up  for it and the Competition itself was great to watch. It did finally prove that we need to get our NC events indoors. After freezing at a couple of NCRSFs and alternately cooking then drowning at RA we need to get the  comfort level up.

The cuts from Pinchpoints disk.

The Melted brush holder on Xtreme impaXs DeWalt drive motor.

Frontal Damage to CheepShot

Rear Damage to CheepShot.