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Cleaning lego tires

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  • Cleaning lego tires

    What would be a good thing to clean lego tires with, to enable maximum grippyness on the FLL table? I was thinking rubbing alcohol? Basically the opposite of Armor-all.
    2014 World Class Learning (coach)
    2015 Trash Trek (coach, judge)
    2016 Animal Allies (coach, judge)
    2017 Hydrodynamics (coach, judge)
    2018 Into Orbit (coach, head judge)

  • #2
    Our team examined at the tires in detail and had a long discussion regarding locating tires exactly the same circumference and trying to improve the traction. The discussion included sanding the outside of the tires in order to make them exactly the same size as well as to attempt to change the friction. We also explored using different cleaners on the tire.

    Ultimately, we came to the conclusion that any change to the Lego piece violated the rules because it would be altering the Lego piece. The rules are pretty clear that only the string and tubes can be changed. Therefore, the kids decided not to attempt anything other than cleaning them with plain water and a cotton rag. This actually did a very good job at cleaning the tires and improving the traction. Also, many liquids will ultimately dissolve the tires or make them harder and make them dry out faster. Rubber is very picky about the chemicals that come in contact with it.
    FLL coach from 2015, state 3x, World 1x, state ref, state judge.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by DJR View Post
      Our team examined at the tires in detail and had a long discussion regarding locating tires exactly the same circumference and trying to improve the traction. The discussion included sanding the outside of the tires in order to make them exactly the same size as well as to attempt to change the friction. We also explored using different cleaners on the tire.

      Ultimately, we came to the conclusion that any change to the Lego piece violated the rules because it would be altering the Lego piece. The rules are pretty clear that only the string and tubes can be changed. Therefore, the kids decided not to attempt anything other than cleaning them with plain water and a cotton rag. This actually did a very good job at cleaning the tires and improving the traction. Also, many liquids will ultimately dissolve the tires or make them harder and make them dry out faster. Rubber is very picky about the chemicals that come in contact with it.
      +1

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      • #4
        If you want to clean your tires to verify the missions work with clean and dusty tires, that is a great idea. If you want to clean the tires to make the robot more cosistent you will regret it later. A sloppy robot is a happy robot. Reliable turns are the enemy of reliable solutions. Designing your solution so it can survive a slip or wobble works better than avoiding slips and wobbles, and the only way to test your solution is to let (or force) the robot to slip and wobble.

        Water and a microfiber cloth are great for cleaning rubber tires
        Last edited by Dean Hystad; 08-12-2018, 11:26 AM.

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