abandon all hope ye robots who enter


 The Disk O' Inferno Image Gallery

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Tweets from Adam Savage, our new BFF, Adam Savage, on his rationale for voting for The Disk O' Inferno over Chomp.

The Disk O' Inferno got swept up in the excitement of the NBA finals. Video.

The ol' spin-the-basketball-on-the-hardened-steel-pointy-tail-tip trick.

Passing back & forth with Mark. What teamwork!

The Disk O' Inferno & Towering Inferno appeared on Good Mythical Morning's search for robots appropriate for a tabletop fight. Our bots were a little too big for the to use. Aaaand, I'm really not sure what this show is all about, but it's got a huge set of followers & views, so I'm clearly not trendy (surprise).

Towering Inferno posing for the Good Mythical Morning folks.

Regarding The Disk O' Inferno. I think it was wise of Richard to keep the safety guards on when these guys visited.


Final wiring. Most pictures of Mark are a blur--he's young, perky, & impetuous. Most pictures of Ross are in sharp focus--he's mature, meticulous, & cautious. The original odd couple!

We sported the casual t-shirts on work days. 3-piece suits were saved for special days. Bringing beach chairs was a good move on my part--until 3/4 of them got crunched & tossed out...

Tuning. Easy to transport the bot on its back, folded, with a giant F-shaped restraint keeping it from springing up. The disk is also pinned to prevent it from rotating.

Ready to go. Waiting. Probably the shortest (in height) robot in the whole event, & one of the longer ones too.

In the folded position, with the tail acting as top armor against overhead hammer bots, or poised to bring some downward slaps itself!

Spotlight added later to highlight the hundreds of disco ball mirrors.

All set up on the pit table on display: signs, sponsor banner, safety guards, etc.

Going through the rotating video capture exercise to generate on-screen animation graphics.

Still shiny during the photo shoots.

Debating poses with the photographer...both mine & the bot's.

One of the runs in the test box.

Grand entrance: strut, strut, strut, wiiiiiiind up, & POINTY POSE NOW!

The Bee Gees backing up Travolta.

Glad our sponsors got good on-screen exposure. Ross applies spotlight to disco ball, I do the pointy pose yet again, Richard & Mark roll their hands (Mark earns the difficulty multiplier for doing it while holding the radio transmitter).

Complicated action shot in the fight against Chomp: Chomp flames & swings down, The Disk O' Inferno puts the tail upright to block the swing, Chomp pops up high & doesn't land the blow. Full fight video.

Post-fight, our fans swarm us for a photo op.


First subassembly: Ampflow gearmotors, NPC Colson wheels, our custom hubs & hubacps. Detailed assembly drawings with BOMs make for efficient assembling!

That complicated chassis took a long time to machine. We did much of our wiring & layout on a 1:1 printout.

Mark getting ready to program the speed controllers, Ross planning wiring, & Jason kitting fasteners & other COTS.

The disco mirror precision layout was performed per ASME Y14.5M, with tolerances besting those of a finest CNC mill. Another masterpiece by Art By Ji.

Disk & tail weapon subassemblies were the next to come together, with flair & everything.

Richard & Jason test-fitting the weapon subassemblies. It's beginning to look like a bot!

Installing the drivetrain subassemblies & weapon motors. Routing wires, cutting them to length, & crimping on connectors.

The dense, compact, & light chassis is what allowed enough weight for 2 powerful weapons. But it did tend to make cable management challenging...


Disk weapon: 48 lb, cut from 1 billet of tool steel, single tooth w/ asymmetric pockets for balance.

Chassis Frame: 48 lb, cut from 1 billet of aluminum 6061. Not many screws needed to assemble this bot!

Tail Frame: 16 lb, cut from 1 billet of aluminum, awaiting disco dance floor paint job.

Tail Shaft: 7 lb of heat-treated tool steel.

Chassis Floorpan: 13 lb, cut from 1 billet of aluminum 6061, dozens of registraton featues to lock to Chassis Frame.

4 Tail Tips, each made from tool steel. 2 installed, & 2 spares.

2 Tail Pivot Blocks, which held bushings that supported the Tail Shaft. Interlocked into features in the Chassis Frame to handle abusive impacts.

EDMed giant steel wrench to torque giant Trantorque keyless bushing that held Disk to Disk Shaft.


Over 600 pounds of metal showed up one day. What a wonderful pallet that the forklift is delivering!

The Chassis Frame was the most machining-intensive & complex part, requiring several setups & cutting tools.

Some last-minute touches on the manual mill.

Mark Lui cranked & cranked for a couple of days to finish off the part. Richard Loehnig provided moral support & lifting strength. Jason Bardis worried, directed, acted as quality control.

The Chassis Floorpan incorporates dozens of registration features to stiffen the Chassis Frame.

Manual lathes sometimes can't be beat for shaft & pulley work.

We kept the EDM machine running for days non-stop to cut tool steel, bronze thrust bushings, & even a super giant open-ended wrench (because Habor Freight didn't have one big enough).

The 3D printer made many weapon guards, as well as a few models & mockups.


PhotoView 360 rendering of SolidWorks model of final assembly, with bling.

Front view, showing the single side tooth & the tail in overhead armor position.

Rear view, stretched out to highlight the tail tips.

Side low view highlights how short the bot is.

Hidden lines shown grayscale rendering, hinting at the complex parts within.

Super exploded view, showing all internal components & where they fit.
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