VEX Encoder Doesn’t Work!

Question:

I can’t seem to get my encoder to work no matter what I do!  It will only ever return a value of 0 or 1, and only for a moment. What’s up?

Answer:

Well, did you restart your software and hardware? Then check this out!  I’ll bet you have another analog sensor plugged into your cortex, like the sonar…. Found this after searching the web…. If using another analog sensor, the Quad Encoder MUST be plugged into a higher number port. Really? Yup. See the snip below. Spent at least a day on this then found the documentation on line, switched the ports with the sonar sensor so that the encoder was on 8 & 9, and the sonar on 4 & 5, and viola! Success!  Try it! Also… we NEVER got the error as shown below… It just didn’t work. Download the whole VEX pdf here: Quadrature+Encoders

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Are there other VEX Parts?

Question:

Do you have a list of all the VEX parts?  I want to order just a few, but I do not know what the part numbers are can you help?

Answer:

Sure can!  Ryan Stobaugh, CIM Master teacher, has put together an updated spreadsheet that has been updated with all of the parts with numbers and prices as of July 2017. Includes pneumatics at the end!   Just copy and paste the part numbers into your district’s requisition form, and add the prices!

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The VEX Testbed is boring….

Question:

The VEX Testbed is boring; do you know of another way to make learning RobotC programming more appealing to high school students?

Answer:

Well, in my classroom we build clawbots, then add all of the sensors to them. we then get to program the sensors on a real, mobile robot!  Kids love it and the culminating activity is a game where they get to drive the robots around; just like a real VEX competition.  In the meantime, they are learning how to program inputs and outputs, the difference between analog and digital, and the how closed and open loop systems work.

reddownloadClawbot TestBed

In the zipped folder above you will find the following documents:
  1. Clawbot Sensor Install: This document shows you how to install the sensors on the clawbot to complete some activities.
  2. Clawbot Checklist: This is a document that the students do screen captures of their RobotC programs on so that you can keep track of their progress as they go.
  3.  Cortex Wiring Diagram: An example of the Cortex wiring. I like to use a template in my class so each robot is the same; it makes troubleshooting easier. It looks like this:

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What else do we need to teach CIM?

Question:

What else do we need to really teach CIM? Are there any “extras” that you recommend?

Answer:

We get this question weekly. So here’s what we are going to do. Give you a preview to a Google doc that is live so we can update it on the fly. You will see it right below this paragraph. Be sure to scroll left and right and up and down to see all of the content! Links are live too!

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Get in touch

Jim Hanson

Chris Hurd

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