Bagged and Tagged!

The final day of build season has come and gone. In the past it was known as Ship, but now it’s known as Bag and Tag. Instead of FedEx making rounds to collect thousands of robots around the world, now teams will be responsible for moving their robot to competition themselves.

Around 8:30 last night, the Hitchhikers finished up their changes on Benji, finalizing the build and tweaking the code. We managed to fit in some time to drive Benji around and shoot some baskets between all the work and modifications.

But all good things must end, and Benji was bagged and tagged before we all left for the night. The very last things were perfected and then Benji was locked away to await our trip to South Carolina in exactly one month.

Just because build season has ended doesn’t mean work stops for us. We still have some building and programming left to do. If we can fit it in, we also have to let our drivers get some training and work out their strategy. Oh no, the work during build season is more intense, but it certainly isn’t the only work we do.

All in all, our build season was a huge success. We managed to bag a working robot in Benji and not have to hold back too many pieces. Nothing catastrophic happened to Benji or any member of the team, which is something very important in FIRST.

Keep your eyes open over the next days and weeks for pictures and videos of Benji. Just because we can’t touch him doesn’t mean we can’t share him.

If you use Twitter, don’t forget to follow us @team2059. We’ll be keeping our feed up to date with our activities throughout the season, up to our competitions and beyond.

See you all in South Carolina!

The Day at the End of Build Season

The final day is upon us all! After six weeks of frantic planning, building, and testing, bag and tag day is here. Before midnight tonight, every FRC team will have to stop working and put a bag around their robot. It will have no fresh air until their first regional competition. Then will begin a frantic three days of fixing and competing.

Today the Hitchhikers will begin their last long workday before a well-deserved break. Starting at nine, we will work until midnight when we zip Benjy away for just over a month until the South Carolina regional in Charleston, March 22th to 24th.

Many things remain to be tweaked on Benjy today, and our twitter feed will be updating with periodic reports on his status.

Remember teams! Zip by midnight, then take a hard-earned break. You’ve done well; you deserve it.

Upcoming dates:

  • Bag and tag: Today!
  • South Carolina regional: 30 days
  • North Carolina regional: 44 days
  • Championships in St. Louis: 67 days

Build Season Update: Week 5

Week Six Already?

It’s hard to believe, but the final week of build season is already here! It’s an exciting time for every team, one full of challenges and achievements, one full of undertakings and overcomings. One full of successes and failures.

The Hitchhikers have had a mixed bag of all these in the past week and on Saturday. On February 10, we met for our first officially extended meeting of the season, staying two extra hours. Drafting of both Chairmans and the Woodie Flower Award submissions were begun from the outlines our outreach team made, the robot’s tower was assembled, and the frame for the shooter was finished.

Saturday saw the longest workday of the season thus far (over thirteen hours!) and the compilation of the qualities each team will see. Progress was made, but not as much as many would have wished to see. The robot’s base and tower were nearly completed and the shooter was finished.

Unfortunately, the shooter made for the robot was not as successful as the prototype developed by the team. Due to a variety of factors, it does not shoot the ball as far. Immediately after the shooter was experimented with, revisions were worked on it to procure a better result. At the end of the night, results had improved.

After several hours of work Saturday morning, the first drafts of the Woodie Flowers and Chairmans awards were completed just before lunchtime. Afterward they were sent through an initial revising process and will continue to be edited and perfected until they are submitted. Teams, these awards are due on the sixteenth! Don’t forget and miss the deadline!

The Hitchhikers have now registered for two regionals. We will be attending both the North and South Carolina competitions. Those are coming up in little over five weeks.


  • Award Submissions: 2/16 (4 days)
  • Bag and Tag/Ship: 2/21 (9 days)
  • SC Regional: 3/22-24 (39 days)
  • NC Regional: 4/5-7 (53 days)
  • Championships: 4/28-30 (76 days)

Build Season Update: Week 5

It moves! Our robot has finally begun to zip around the build room with ease. Wheels are mounted, our program works, and we’ve begun to test everyone’s driving skills. We had our first driver tests today and it seems like everyone is somewhat competent at not crashing into things.

A big announcement, we’re having special guests tomorrow! Hawktimus Prime is coming to visit and work together with The Hitchhikers. We hope to have a fun and productive time with our guests.