Official Q&A: VIQC 2019-2020: Squared Away Usage Guidelines

Robot Size and Starting Posistion Problem


Samuel Schursky (Event Partner)
3 months ago

Hi all, I spoke with are regional rep, and he directed me here for this question. I notice that there have been similiar problems but people didn't seem to realize what is causing the difficulties.

As stated in the following rules, the robot must be 11 x 19.

<G5> Expansion is limited during a Match. During the Match, Robots may not expand beyond the following restrictions: a. Horizontally, beyond an 11” x 19” (279.4mm x 482.6mm) area. b. Vertically, beyond the 15” (381mm) high starting requirement.

Also as stated by the following rule, it must fit inside the starting area of 11 x 19.

<R4> Robots must fit in the sizing box. At the start of each Match, the Robot must be able to satisfy the following constraints: a. Only be contacting the Floor and/or the Field Perimeter. b. Fit within an 11” x 19” (279.4mm x 482.6mm) area, bounded by the Starting Position. c. Be no taller than 15” from the Floor.

The problem that I have discovered is the following. The starting areas are NOT 11 x 19. On our two fields bought two years apart the starting areas for length and width are both about a 32nd of an inch short in either directions as shown in the two following pictures.

![img](https://www.robotevents.com/storage/markdown/uploads/V1LBoQXTadECev05s71ZmGlbLwNoDcZmln6DZHIf.jpeg)

![img](https://www.robotevents.com/storage/markdown/uploads/8N9M2WQn1YBOlJz9LdjfXkG6bPfK6NUE35Jm0Kn8.jpeg)

In previous years and games, this was not a problem. This year though the tolerances are very small. We have groups that have robots that are exactly 11 by 19. They would pass inspection (assuming the measuring device does not rely on the field which might have the same problems) but be ever so slightly outside of the starting positions. Their definitely needs to be a rules clarification on this.

Making the robot size smaller would not work. The way the pieces are made, the robot would have to be smaller in increments of 1/2 to 1/4 of an inch. This would make it much more difficult to incorporate everything needed to play the game effectively.

A rule addition allowing the robots to be slightly (thickness of an axel) outside the starting area as long as it passes inspection of course would be a good solution. 

Thanks for the time.

Sam Schursky
Team 6277
The Harvey School
Katonah, New York
Answered by Game Design Committee

First, please review this similar Q&A. Although it is asking a slightly different question than yours, it includes some relevant background information regarding Robot size rulings and tolerances.

www.robotevents.com/VIQC/2019-2020/QA/382

It looks like your root question is the following:

We have groups that have robots that are exactly 11 by 19. They would pass inspection (assuming the measuring device does not rely on the field which might have the same problems) but be ever so slightly outside of the starting positions. Their definitely needs to be a rules clarification on this.

A rule addition allowing the robots to be slightly (thickness of an axel) outside the starting area as long as it passes inspection of course would be a good solution.

Thank you for your suggestion, but this rule addition will not be made. The intents of VIQC's sizing rules are for Robot size to be checked during inspection and then enforced at the beginning of each Match. Having a different sizing rule for a Match vs inspection would negate the purpose of the inspection process.

They would pass inspection (assuming the measuring device does not rely on the field which might have the same problems) but be ever so slightly outside of the starting positions.

The official VIQC Sizing Tool does utilize the field as its reference. Relying on a common field ensures a standardized expectation for Teams, inspectors, and Head Referees, regardless of which event they attend. Some manufacturing variance is to be expected in any physical product, as is variance if using different measuring methods.

For example, the VIQC Field Perimeter has a very slight draft angle as an injection molded plastic part; so, if you lay a ruler from the perimeter to the black line, a difference of less than 1mm could easily occur depending on where you rest the ruler against the wall.

So, as an overarching answer to this question, we are going to refer to rule G3:

<G3> Use common sense. When reading and applying the various rules in this document, please remember that common sense always applies in the VEX IQ Challenge.

The intent of G4, G5, R5, and R6 is to provide a design constraint in the form of Robot size that is reasonably observable by a volunteer inspector/referee, and consistently enforceable across all events worldwide. It is not a reasonable expectation for an event to use digital calipers to measure Robot size; it is a reasonable expectation for an event to use the tools that are available to all Teams, such as a standard field, a publicly available physical sizing tool, and human observation. To avoid potential conflicts, we would advise Teams remind mindful of these realities when designing their VEX IQ Robots such that they do not rely on a possible variance of 0.03" to determine their legality.