2024 Build Season Issue #1 Newsletter

1/7/24 – 1/13/24

Our Team

After a highly successful Kickoff, with our auditorium being packed with over 30 FMA teams, Team 1403 reconvened to discuss FIRST’s announcement of the competition challenge and game reveal. This marked the beginning of an exciting Build Season. Throughout the week, we have been working on prototyping and designing several subsystems, such as the intake, shooter, and endgame hanger. Team 1403 has also started work on our submission for the Impact Award, including the Impact Essay, Executive Summary, and Video. 


Mechanical has been creating field elements that can be used for testing the robot. They have also started building the drivetrain, using swerve modules, allowing it to move in all directions. Going forward, Mechanical will coordinate with the Design subteam to start assembling the structure of our robot.

Members of the Mechanical subteam working on parts for robot prototypes


Electrical has been mapping out the electrical board that will be used for the robot. This includes the process of shaping it to certain dimensions before creating a 2D CAD of the electrical board with all of the components required placed on it. 

 Experimenting with sensors on one of our past robots


The Design Subteam is finalizing the geometry for the arm, allowing newer members of the subteam to research optimal designs for implementation. Other robot features still being planned are the final pivot point location, the width of the shooter, and clearance measurements to ensure that the robot meets all game specifications.


Programming has been testing the capabilities of photon vision, a vision system for the robot that scans the area of the field and determines the robot’s position relative to that. They are also working on preparing base code for various autonomous routes, experimenting with sensors and robot movement. 

 Experimenting with sensors on one of our past robots


This past week, Strategy held a team-wide strategy session, teaching members about the game rules and guiding members through a Needs-Wants-Wishes list for the robot. Strategy has been discussing possible autonomous routes with our Programming subteam, considering multiple piece autos. 


The A/V Subteam has been tasked with multiple jobs, such as creating the Impact Video as part of the team’s submission for the Impact Award. Additionally, A/V is creating Instagram Reels that will be posted to our account (@team1403), furthering our social media reach. Finally, members of A/V are going around the meeting to record footage of Build Season to demonstrate Team 1403’s efforts throughout the year. 


The B/C Subteam has been assigned new projects and tasks for the 2024 Build Season. The subteam has been working on completing grant applications for supplemental funding and creating social media posts for our various platforms, such as our Instagram and Facebook pages. Additionally, B/C has updated our Sponsorship Packet and written a letter for the annual Parents’ Meeting. 


The Outreach subteam has continued its efforts in maintaining team initiatives as well as reaching out to the community to start new ones. For example, the subteam, inspired by former football player Eric LeGrand’s presentation at our high school, has reached out to him for a possible partnership to learn what we can do to help the community become more accessible for others.

Written by The Business & Communications Subteam

Instagram: @team1403

Email: cougar1403@gmail.com