Donner Domination




Vishesh, Scott, Alan

Section A, Group 10





Click here for video

(We have since removed the arch and attached the rubber bands to the underside of the chassis)


Operating Principle: Step By Step Details

Four of our rubber bands are on the underside of the chassis attached to eye hooks, and they start off pulled back, wrapping around the rear axel.There is a string attaching the front axel to the mousetraps, and it is initially slack.Upon release, the rubber bands unwind to propel the car down the first 20í of the track.This whole distance the string is winding around the front axel, and it becomes taut at 20í, tripping the traps.The mousetraps, aided by the remaining two rubber bands, rotate the dowel through an arc, unwinding the string from the front axel and propelling the vehicle back to the finish line.


Interesting and Original Features:


Repeatability and Performance:


Trial Times:


Our car is not as consistent as we would like.There are times when the traps trigger early, but it is never more than a foot, so we can compensate by overshooting a small amount.There is also a small chance of skidding as the mouse traps release, causing it to go out of bounds, but we rotated the wheels and the problem has mostly disappeared.


Biggest Roadblock:

The problem we encountered that was most difficult to overcome was steering.The axels are not perfectly parallel, so the vehicle had a tendency to swerve to the left.We added an additional layer of rubber bands to the wheels on the left to increase their radius, but that didnít completely solve the problem.We determined part of the problem was the left wheels didnít have enough traction and were slipping, so we tried redistributing the weight of the car to increase the normal force on the left wheels.Now, the car drives fairly straight.