SPARC Getting Started Guide

How do I get involved?

This is a question that gets asked by almost every new roboteer when they get started. For a long time the answer to that question has been messy. Depending on who you ask, you may get the better part of a dozen different websites to look at, an email address, or a hurried speech discussing some of the ways to get started. The SPARC Getting Started Guide is an attempt to pull together the information that would typically be spread across the internet and the minds of experienced builders and put it into a single location. This is by no means a detailed instruction manual for building a fighting robot. It is however a guide that will help you move from “I want to build a fighting robot” through to “I’ve just finished my first event.”

The guide is broken up in to six major categories to make it a bit easier to find the answers you’re looking for:

Part 1 discusses what to do before you build your robot including finding an event and determining the route you’ll take to your first robot (be it custom, kit, or complete purchased machine).

Part 2 looks at the major components involved in a typical fighting robot as well as some of the more common construction methods and locomotion systems.

Part 3 covers a wide range of common weapon systems found on fighting robots of all sizes.

Part 4 provides information on many of the common custom fabrication resources available to fighting robot builders.

Part 5 focuses on the tools you should bring to your first event.

Part 6 goes through what you can expect when you’re at your first event.

The SPARC Getting Started Guide is and always will be a living document. As the sport, rules, and resources change over time these documents will be updated to reflect the current state of things. If you’ve got questions, comments, or suggestions for additional material please post them to the questions section of the SPARC Forum: