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Andymark, a company that invents and designs components for robotics and mobility applications, has improved the design of its aluminium gearbox kit by using an RTP 200 series long fibre-reinforced nylon 6/6 composite for the housing.

The company supplies components for robotic competitions such as those sponsored by First — a non-profit organisation that helps students compete for scholarship funds by building their own robots.

Co-founder Andy Baker, a mechanical engineer, believed the gearbox housing could be made with a reinforced plastic, which would mean fewer parts, simplifying assembly, reducing weight and increasing durability.

Baker sought advice from RTP Company, which recommend using its RTP 200 series composite for the housing. The resulting gearbox redesign, called the Cimplebox, has fewer parts, is more durable and is 0.1lb (0.25kg) lighter in weight.

Key benefits of product application

  • The Cimplebox is now the standard gearbox for all First robot kits and more than 2,000 teams used it in the 2011 competitions without a single failure.
  • RTP Company provided Andymark with excellent technical support; RTP’s CAE engineers did a flow analysis and ran deformation studies of different materials under load to help the company identify the best solution, according to Baker.
  • Andymark is now working with RTP on redesigning another part.

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