Team Update - 9/15/2022

I hope your builds and strategy sessions are all off to a great start! We have a ton of updates to share this week, and are looking forward to seeing updates from y’all as we get deeper into the season. Who is going to be the first team to post a video of position-hold flight?

Shipping Updates

The best way to summarize the status of kit shipments is - everyone should have everything! We cannot thank you enough for your patience as we navigated the supply chain woes of 2022.

With that being said, PLEASE use the pre-printed return shipping label found in your Wave 2 kit to return your original ESC to us, per my last update. The reminders will start to get a bit less friendly the longer it takes…

Kit Updates

There are still some teams who have not filled out the “did you receive everything” survey. Please make sure to take a few minutes to inventory your kit and fill out this form - it is the only way to receive your complimentary Droneblocks curriculum activation, and the only way for us to verify that your kit has made it to you at all!

For the most part, it sounds like most teams have received the kits as intended. I will give you this tip, though - if you’ve gotten into the build already, you know that M3 fasteners are the bread-and-butter of the AVR Drone. It may be a good idea to pick up some additional spares, just in case you missed something in the inventory, or your shop cat steals the last screw of a certain size…

Tello and the Droneblocks Desktop Beta

Speaking of Droneblocks, check out this post from the Droneblocks development team, and make sure you are using the Desktop beta for the AVR competition. Although you can use the mobile app version if you really want to, the desktop version is going to be the best way to incorporate Mission Pads into your autonomous runs, and even includes “WASD”-style manual flight controls.

Event Registration

Just another reminder to make sure you’re heading over to and start registering for events! Unlike last season, we will not be assigning events to teams - you get to choose which event(s) fit your schedule the best.

If you have completed the payment process for your team registration, you can follow the steps outlined in this post to add yourself to an event. If your PO is still being processed, we will need to add you manually - please contact your Team Engagement Manager to do so.

Documentation Updates

All sections of the Assembly Guide are now live except for the “Peripheral Drone Assembly”, which should be coming in the next week or so, and will explain the intended default methods for implementing your thermal camera, laser, and other accessories.

Speaking of peripherals, it has come to our attention that the STL file that was initially linked for the AVR-GIMBAL-PAN component was an incorrect version for a period of time. If you have already downloaded and printed this part, please double check it! If you have printed it and your outer holes are 24mm apart - great! You got the correct version - lucky you.

Finally - as you approach the software-heavy portions of the Advanced Drone Assembly, don’t be shy! We know that things like SSH or networking setups can be intimidating at first, so Bell engineers are standing by here on the forum to answer any questions or issues you come across. These questions will then be used to continuously update the Troubleshooting documentation throughout the season and help all teams succeed!

Game Updates

To round it all out, it’s time for another Game Manual update, which should be live on by the time you read this post! Today’s update includes the following news:

  • All-new section 7.9, outlining this season’s Championship qualification criteria (!)
  • All-new “Appendix A”, with simplified drawings for key field dimensions
  • Additional Auton Checkpoint Line details in sections 5.1.6, 5.5.5, and Figure 23
  • Typo fixes and miscellaneous cleanups

We have also started moving rules questions into a “Q&A” section of the forum. Much like the troubleshooting documentation above, we will use these Q&A’s to drive future game manual updates whenever possible.

Cat Tax

If you’ve made it this far and are still reading, I’d just like to thank you by introducing you to Ravi, the best drone-building assistant. Although I think he is more interested in playing with dangly wires than playing firefighting games…

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