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Camera Slideshow displaying pictures of the competition arena and parts of the vehicle.

How to build movies

This is a series of short 1 to 4 minute movies showing the necessary steps to build the SUMO car's body. the link will open in a new window at a diferent website. You can view them online or on an iPod. you will need Apple's QuickTime to view them. It is free.
Put more of your color ping pong balls in your home than your opponent.
COST ($15.50)
Each kit to build costs $15.50. A team only need to buy one kit. This kit will include a wood platform to build on. At least two motors, a caster, 2 sets of gears, 2 drive wheels, 2 sets of pulleys, and the hardware to put everything together. To build this you will need a flat tipped screw driver, a nail or scratch awl, a hammer and the video instructions found at The money is due by Friday, January 28, 2010. We will order Friday afternoon.
CONTEST DUE DATE: 1st long lunch in May in rom 265

The vehicle will start behind the line. No part of the vehicle may extend beyond the plane of the arena before the contest begins.

There are to be no other strings or cables other than the electricity supply cables from the ceiling extending inside the arena.

Your vehicle must have a theme.

Each car will have an umbilical cord that supplies the power to each motor. A car may not damage the umbilical cord of another vehicle. If a cord is intentionally hit, the offending car will be disqualified.

You may add pieces to your vehicle other than the ones that came in the kit. There will be an extra line of

The vehicle may NOT launch any projectiles.

The vehicle cannot have a total mass greater than 1090 grams. (2 lbs).


The vehicle may NOT utilize fire, explosives, water or any dangerous implements.

Each "home " ball behind your the barrier is worth 2 points, each opponents ball behind your barrier is minus 1 point. In the event of a tie, which ever side has the odd colored ball on his/her side wins. Sides will be split diagonally in the arena. (It's the dotted line in the diagram.)

The vehicle may not be designed to do damage to another vehicle or the person doing the controlling.

If neither car wins in the time period, then the car that can still move forwards, backwards and steer, will be declared the winner. In the event that both are equally matched in mobility, then the side that has the odd colored ball will win. If the odd colored ball is in the middle, then a draw will be declared and both cars will go on to another match. If one of these cars draws again, then that car will be determined the lower.

You are allowed to work on your car in between rounds. Time is critical. If you are not ready at the appointed time, then your opponent will be given a 5 second head start during the competition. If both teams are not then if a draw is determined both vehicles will be determined the losers.

Engineering is about failure; predicting it and learning from it when it happens. You are expected to have failures during the design and construction phase of your car. You are expected to help each other and learn from these failures until you succeed!

The contest will be run during your class period.



You are not required to use any of these materials. This is just a list of suggestions to choose from.

  • Duct tape
  • Cereal/food boxes
  • Empty tennis ball canisters
  • PVC pipe
  • Light (thin) wood
  • Plastic piping
  • Foam core poster board
  • Foam house insulation
  • Adamantium metal


by Tony Wayne ...(If you are a teacher, please feel free to use these resources in your teaching.)

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