6168 Maniacal Mechanics

We are FTC team 6168, the Maniacal Mechanics, an 11th-year team located in Rolla, Missouri. We are one of 4 teams under the Rolla Robotics umbrella. Our team members range from 7th-12th graders that attend school in the Rolla Public School District. We pride ourselves in being a student-driven team, meaning that as members we are responsible for all decisions made regarding the robot, setting up fundraisers, servicing the community, and taking the initiative to accomplish our goals. We have knowledgeable coaches who know when to allow us to make an attempt at something, regardless of the success rate, and when to step in to prevent us from hurting ourselves. Most importantly, our team builds one another up, helps each other out, and establishes friendships that extend outside of the workshop. We enjoy a feeling of fulfillment in knowing that we participate in this driven family of competition.



Current Community Outreach

Alumni Event

During a team meeting, we came up with an idea to reunite alumni from all of Rolla Robotics. The whole team thought it was a great opportunity for us to give back to all of our alumni. We are very thankful for all of our alumni and veteran members because Rolla Robotics wouldn’t be the same without the imprint they all left behind for the team members now. We reached out to many different facilities to find out which place would be the best for us to host an alumni event. After looking through the many different options, we decided that we were going to host the party at the Lion’s Den in Rolla, Missouri. The party was a great success with many connections reunited. Everyone got together and shared stories from the beginning years of Rolla Robotics.
We made a slideshow of years of photos from every team and robot. We played games like musical chairs, Just Dance, and Kahoot over the history of robotics. We chaperoned the party whilst our sister FRC Team 6817 catered the event. Overall, seeing the alumni have a great time has inspired us to host an event every year around the same time to give back to them.

Assistive Devices

One of the outreach projects we are most proud of is reconnecting with our local organizations like the VFW, nursing homes, schools, and hospitals. Over the last three seasons, it has been difficult with the COVID-19 pandemic to find opportunities to help out the long-standing supporters of our program. But last season our coach mentioned that–for various reasons–people may struggle with certain tasks involving grip strength and dexterity. So with that as our inspiration, we reached out to some of our local organizations to ask if we could meet with them and talk about assistive technology. Since we worked on this project last year, we didn’t have to do much research on 3D printable assistive devices. Our main focus was on promoting our ability to help others. We then brought these models with us to talk to the organization leaders. After speaking with them, they suggested that we put up flyers so that anyone at these places could contact us and request our 3D modeling and printing services.

Christmas Drive-in

During one of our meetings our mentor, Riley, brought up an outreach idea to us. While he was working, a lady named PJ was buying supplies for the Christmas display at Lion’s Club. She was having issues trying to come up with an idea to make it look like an elf skating around an ice rink. So whenever it was brought to us, we decided that we were interested in doing it. So, that weekend, we went out to Menards and bought supplies for what we wanted to do. We bought a toddler train for the base to make it go around in a circle. We then thought about how we were going to make it continue to go around in a circle since the only way it would move is by
holding a button. To that issue, we rewired it so the wire had a straight connection to the battery. For the backdrop and front drop, we had the Design Academy from RTI print out a design for us. We ran it from December 7th through December 22nd, but we had issues with the weather, things not staying in place, and things falling off.

Mark twain elementary school assembly

Our team visited a local elementary school. This visit was a great opportunity for us to spread the word about FIRST, as well as a fun way to get younger generations excited about STEM. At the assembly we let students and teachers drive our robot around an obstacle course. Not only that, but we also gave a brief presentation about First Tech Challenge and what it’s all about. We plan on returning on the 7th of February to the school’s STEM night to give the students a more engaging presentation. We also let the students Our team loves opportunities like this because it allows our members to become positive role models for youth in our community and connect with them on a deeper level.





This Years Current Challenge (2022-23)