Improving the 1lber

A few weeks ago, I stopped by my friend Jim’s in South Philly to catch up on things and also to work on my 1lb bot “Absolutely Naut VDD”.
The bot took the worst beating it has in 2 years at Motorama. As you can see, after the teardown was done, there was more damage I didn’t see. The aluminum support on this side was tweaked… 1/4″ aluminum.. TWEAKED! Ugh. In any case, Jim and myself did some machining to improve the only weak part left on the bot: The weapon supports.

Here’s one of the rails we did. More meat in the center, switching to a dead shaft for strength. We also changed over from timing belts to round belts.

All that’s left to do is get needle bearings for the pulleys, and buy some roll pins to hold everything together. I also need to rework the frame, as I think it’s time to get away from carbon fiber rod. It’s strong, but the joints are the weakest spot on the frame. Come Motorama, this will probably be Naut’s last hurrah in its illustrious 4 year run. Hopefully finishing in the top 3 for the 3rd year in a row.


Jon is a recreational runner of many, many distances, a music lover at heart, seasoned veteran of combat robot fighting, and a frugal (stingy) shopper of everything. He's a proud husband, and clean and sober since 2012.


  1. Hey. I was wondering if you had any CAD models of the ant weight. Of course, if your willing to give away the secrets of your robot.

  2. Hello there, I didn't CAD this robot at all, never really CADed any of my bots cept for one. I kinda "go with the flow". I appreciate it though!

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