Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
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Official Q&A: VRC 2023-2024: Over Under

Usage Guidelines All Questions

Is adding lube to motor cartridges illegal?


3225E
8-Aug-2023

R14 simply states:

No modifications to electronic or pneumatic components are allowed.

R14c states:

Teams may make the following modifications to the V5 / EXP Smart Motor user-serviceable features. This list is all-inclusive; no other modifications are permitted. Where applicable, the components listed below (in the specific applications listed below) are permissible exceptions to R20. >i. Replacing the gear cartridge with other official cartridges. >ii. Removing or replacing the screws from the V5 Smart Motor Cap (276-6780). >iii. Removing or replacing the threaded mounting inserts (276-6781). >iv. Aesthetic/non-functional labeling (e.g., markers, stickers, paint, etc.).

It is very clear that no modifications may be done to motors or motor cartridges except for the 4 things listed in the rulebook. However, I would like some clarification on whether or not adding any lube that is allowed by R7b, would be allowed for motor cartridges.

Motor cartridges come with some factory lube already applied, but I have had motor cartridges that due to how long they have been sitting around, the lube would dry up and impact the over all performance of the motors. Can we take apart the motor cartridge, clean the dried lube, re-lube the gears, then putting the cartridge back exactly how it came? Or are we expected to buy new cartridges when the old ones preform worse? Wouldn't this count as basic maintanance instead of modification? Thank you.

Answered by committee
17-Aug-2023

Thank you for your question. Disassembling a motor cartridge and adding non-factory lubricant is considered a modification of the V5 Smart Motor and is prohibited by rule <R14>-c.

Teams may make the following modifications to the V5 / EXP Smart Motor user-serviceable features. This list is all-inclusive; no other modifications are permitted.

Rule <R7>-b will be revised in a future update to the game manual to indicate that this is not a legal use of grease.