A Clothesline Racer is a vehicle that can start at one end of a 100 foot long, 3/16 inch galvanized steel cable, and go to the other end and return.
The photos here are from various Net sources. These will be replaced with racer entries for this contest in early March 2012
The Races; Where and When
Race qualifying and practice rounds will take place on 2 March, 2012 (Friday morning 10 am and Friday afternoon 4 pm). The finals will be held on 3 March, 2012 (Saturday morning 11 am). The location will be the Northwest corner of the parking lot at 9680 Granite Ridge Drive, San Diego, California, 92123.
To allow organizers to plan the events, all contestants must
register. Use the form at one of these links:
Registration in .PDF format
Registration in .HTM format
Return the completed form to Mr. Vannoy's mail box in the upstairs instructor's office or via email to RoboticsProfessor@GMail.com. Deadline for registration is Monday, 27 February, 2012.
- The 'Clothesline' will be 3/16 inch galvanized, woven steel cable.
- Cable length will be approximately 100 feet.
- The cable will be suspended aproximately four feet off the pavement.
- Near each end of the cable there will be a wood plate
(called the STOP) one foot square. The stops will be approximately 94
feet apart. This plate will either be painted white be covered with
white paper to make it reflective for racers using infrared or acoustic
distance sensors. This plate serves two purposes:
- To act as a mechanical stop at each end to prevent the vehicle from hitting the cable suspension hardware.
- To allow vehicles so equipped to detect, either mechanically or electronically, each end of the cable. (Notice the diamond shaped back plate in this photo.)
- The desire is to design and build an electronic timing mechanism that can accurately (to one one-hundredth of a second) measure the time it takes a vehicle to travel the 94 foot track and return. If an accurate timer is not available, a human operated stop-watch will be used.
Race Track Details
This diagram shows the details of the track. The 94 feet dimension is approximate and could vary slightly depending on the placement of the cable tension hardware. The most important dimension is the three feet between the STOP and the electronic sensor. That three feet will be maintained at 36 inches plus or minus one inch. This allows all racers to be able to consistantly and accurately know when they are approaching the sensor. Since the sensor must be triggered at the far end of the course BEFORE the racer begins travelling back to the start, it must always be in the assigned place.
Must weigh less than four pounds.
Must be battery powered. (Later contests will allow any form of propulsion, but for this event, batteries only.)
Must be able to fit within a 12 inch cube and can not extend beyond those dimensions at any point during its race.
Must begin the race between the start-end stop and the Start/Finish sensor.(See Note 1)
Must be detected by the far stop and return to the start/end sensor.
Must be fully autonomous after the GO signal is issued. (Any manual or remote trigger mechanism is allowed to start the vehicle.)
Must be able to be quickly placed on the wire without requiring unconnecting the end of the wire. The wire will be fixed at the start of the event and remain fixed for the entire event.
May not damage or adulterate the wire or stops in any way (no residue, soot, char, rubber, goop, or anything else left behind, no cutting or abrading, or smashing into so hard as to break, and yes, we expect things to bonk into the stops pretty hard.)
Must finish the race with all parts it started with and still be able to fit into a 12 inch cube volume.
Must be safe for racers and spectators alike. Any racer deemed unsafe by the contest judges will be disqualified.
Note 1: Sensor is defined as any mechanical, electronic, acoustic or laser device that can be used to positively determine that a racer has actually reached the designated point. The exact technology is not yet determined.
There will be two separate classes of racer:
Low Tech Vehicles
A low-tech vehicle is defined as any vehicle that does not use any form of computing. (microprocessor, microcontroller, PIC chip, CPU, etc.)
High Tech Vehicles
A high-tech vehicle is any vehicle that uses any form of computer to read sensors, control speed or perform any other tasks for the race.
At a minimum, there will be certificates for top finishers. Other prizes to be determined.
Each racer gets up to three tries to starts. Racers may complete two runs, the best time being the score.
Failure to complete the course after three attempts disqualifies the racer.
Judges may rule that a racer is failing to make headway if a racer has not moved within a period of at least 30 seconds at any point.
Non-race vehicle contact of any kind with the cable, stops or racer after the GO command is given, will disqualify that start Contact is allowed after race completion, or admission of failure of an attempt.