ThinkTank Development Team

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The Robotics Resource Center at WPI is designed to provide support to on-campus and off-campus activities and groups for projects and competitive robotics. The RRC hosts a number of robotics events each year, provides guidance and materials for student projects, and supports the Robotics Engineering major. The staff consists of Ken Stafford, Brad Miller, and Colleen Shaver.

Using Belts & Belt Drives

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Presented by Eric Bjork from Gates Corporation at the 2012 FRC Kickoff Workshops.

The presentation with audio is available through the link(s) on the right. Due to internet connectivity issues during recording, it is possible that some videos may have low quality audio at times, cut in and out, or not show video at all times.

The video links on the right likely required the GoToMeeting codec to be downloaded in order to be viewed successfully. Due to this, some Apple machines and products may have difficulty viewing, although we are working on creating Mac-friendly copies. To download the codec, go to

Belt drives are a great power transmission substitute for roller chain and can offer many advantages to the design and functionality of the system which is goes on. Essentially maintenance free, synchronous belt drives do not require any lubrication or other special dressings to prolong the life of the drive, and also helps with the cleanliness of the drive (no grease). When paired with aluminum sprockets, belt drives weigh less than a comparable roller chain drive. Also with the close fit of the tooth/groove engagement, the backlash is minimized which increases the responsiveness of the drive. This presentation will discuss the advantages and disadvantages with using a synchronous belt drive as a power transmission means on your robot.

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