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"Gyrobot - From the word Gyrate which is to spin/revolve and to rotate in circles, and erm - robot!"
— Steve Wood, explaining the origins of Gyrobot's name

Gyrobot was a heavyweight robot that competed in Series 7 of Robot Wars. It reached the second round in its only appearance, losing to The Grim Reaper on a judges' decision.

Despite being present in the pits to work on Gyrobot, team member Neil Solomon chose not to appear on television, so was absent for interviews and battles, and captain Steve Wood appeared to be a one-man team on television. Since the passing of Neil Solomon[1], three new team members joined Steve Wood to form a larger Team Gyrobot.

DesignEdit

Gyrobot series 6

The underside of Gyrobot

Gyrobotinsides1

The insides of the Series 6 version of Gyrobot

Gyrobot was an invertible rim spinner, driven by four wheels mounted in pairs on either side. It was very quick at 20mph, while its outer ring weighed 35kg and could spin up to 750rpm, generating 40 kilojoules of energy. It was armed in lexan polycarbonate, originally steel, and cost £2000 to build. After taking damage from Fluffy in its Series 7 qualifier, a 4mm band of steel was added to the outer rim, making it 7mm thick, bringing Gyrobot very close to the weight limit. Gyrobot could also spin at speeds of up to 1500rpm by spinning the drive on the spot.

QualificationEdit

Gyrobot Series 6 qualifier

Gyrobot in its Series 6 qualifier

Gyrobot was built to enter Series 5, but withdrew from the qualifiers due to electrical problems.

In its Series 6 qualifier, Gyrobot fought Scrap Dragon, Shell Shock and The Stag. It started promisingly, attacking The Stag's wheel and the immobile Shell Shock, even immobilising Scrap Dragon with a strong blow. However, it was gripped and pushed around by The Stag, and it broke down over the mock flame pit, thus failing to qualify.

Series 7 Qualifier

Gyrobot pushes Terror Turtle in its Series 7 qualifier

In its Series 7 qualifier, Gyrobot fought an invertible box-shaped robot, Terror Turtle, and Fluffy. After sustaining early damage from Fluffy, Gyrobot played a tactical fight, avoiding the action while accelerating its rim spinner. Once Fluffy had become immobilised, Gyrobot took the opportunity to cause damage to its opponents, and pushed Terror Turtle into the arena wall. Although Gyrobot lost the use of its spinner, it was declared the winner of the battle, and qualified for its series debut. Fluffy and Terror Turtle also qualified.

Gyrobot S9

Gyrobot at the time of Series 9

Gyrobot teeth

Gyrobot's new teeth

After choosing not to apply for Series 8 due to time constraints, Gyrobot was upgraded to enter Series 9. Its weapon now weighed a huge 42.5kg, which would have made it the heaviest spinning weapon in Robot Wars, and the robot's teeth were upgraded to use Inconel hard edge welding. The team even 3D printed safety guards for these teeth, designed two interchangeable top panels, and applied under a team of four people. However, Gyrobot ultimately did not appear in the series.

Robot HistoryEdit

Series 7Edit

"Will this be employed later in the series, or be picking up a Robot Wars giro?"
Jonathan Pearce as Gyrobot enters the arena
Jackson Wallop vs Gyrobot vs Killerkat

Gyrobot and Jackson Wallop team up on Killerkat

Gyrobot competed in Heat B, where it was due to face Jackson Wallop, Killerkat and the third seed Terrorhurtz in its first round battle. However, Terrorhurtz was disqualified before the battle began due to arriving at the studio in an unfinished state, leaving the three remaining robots to fight on without it. Gyrobot began tentatively, getting its spinning rim up to speed before slamming into the sides of Killerkat and Jackson Wallop. It and Jackson Wallop continued to hit Killerkat until the latter became immobilised, although Gyrobot’s rim appeared to have stopped working fully by the time Jackson Wallop knocked Killerkat onto its side. Gyrobot then pushed Killerkat onto the Flame Pit as it was counted out by Refbot, setting fire to its leopard fur, before circling round the arena until ‘cease’ was called.

Gyrobot vs The Grimreaper

Gyrobot gets under The Grim Reaper

Grim reaper vs gyrobot

Gyrobot is flipped by The Grim Reaper

In the second round, Gyrobot fought The Grim Reaper. It immediately backed away from The Grim Reaper as the latter charged in to flip it, momentarily causing it to spin on its rim, before struggling to drive away from an angle grinder. Gyrobot was then pushed into Sir Killalot and flipped over by The Grim Reaper, before getting pushed out of the CPZ by Sir Killalot and being slammed into an angle grinder by its opponent. It bumped into and drove away from The Grim Reaper to try and get its weapon up to speed, driving over the Flame Pit and into Cassius Chrome in the process, before driving into the wall twice and getting flipped and pushed into Sir Killalot by The Grim Reaper once again. Gyrobot retaliated by pushing The Grim Reaper back when it missed its next flip, causing The Grim Reaper to get wedged on top of its rim, only to be flipped onto Sir Killalot’s lance and driving away to get its spinning rim up to speed again.

"For me, it’s all The Grim Reaper, and the Gyrobot, defensively, erm, now what do you call that tactic? I think it’s called… running away!"
— Jonathan Pearce, unimpressed with Gyrobot’s lack of aggression as it gets its weapon up to speed
The Grimreaper vs Gyrobot

Gyrobot stays in the arena

Grimreaper Damage 2

Damage caused to The Grim Reaper by Gyrobot

This compelled The Grim Reaper to strike Gyrobot with its rear panel, before flipping and chasing it around the arena once again, with Gyrobot driving into the wall and Cassius Chrome while doing so. Gyrobot was flipped a few more times by The Grim Reaper – at one point getting pinned between Sir Killalot and the wall - before ramming The Grim Reaper a few times as ‘cease’ was called. Despite Gyrobot landing a blow on The Grim Reaper’s side that damaged one of its panels, the judges’ decision went against it, as The Grim Reaper proved more aggressive throughout. This eliminated Gyrobot from the Seventh Wars.

ResultsEdit

GYROBOT - RESULTS
Series 7
The Seventh Wars - UK Championship
Heat, Round 2
Heat B, Round 1 vs. Jackson Wallop, Killerkat, Terrorhurtz (3) Qualified
Heat B, Round 2 vs. The Grim Reaper Lost

Wins/LossesEdit

  • Wins: 1
  • Losses: 1

Series RecordEdit

  • An early CAD design for Gyrobot
  • An early CAD design for Gyrobot, with four wheels
  • Gyrobot in motion, armoured in steel.
  • Steve Wood with the Series 6 version of Gyrobot
  • Gyrobot in 2004
  • Gyrobot's interchangeable motifs for Series 9
Series Gyrobot Record
The First Wars Did not enter
The Second Wars Did not enter
The Third Wars Did not enter
The Fourth Wars Did not enter
The Fifth Wars Withdrew from qualifiers
The Sixth Wars Failed to qualify
The Seventh Wars Heat, Round 2
Series 8 Did not enter
Series 9 Not selected

Outside Robot WarsEdit

After the Seventh Wars, Gyrobot was upgraded to spin and accelerate faster, also gaining studded wheels and an improved battery life, with the intention of entering another series of Robot Wars. However, the show entered its 12-year hiatus before it could compete with the upgrades. Gyrobot remained operational over this period, but could not compete at live events due to the restrictions affecting spinning weapons prior to 2017.

In 2017, Team Gyrobot built an antweight called Vibrant, which is an invertible, wheeless 'brushbot' armed with twin horizontal bar spinners. The robot relies entirely on the vibration of the spinners for forward movement and steering, and is capable of using torque steering for faster turning through adjustments to the speed of each weapon motor.[2]

TriviaEdit

  • There is a robot listed in the Honourable Mentions of the Combat Robot Hall of Fame, by the name of Gyrobot. However, it is not this machine, nor is it related, as it is an antweight class machine.
  • Gyrobot was the only robot in Series 7 from Wiltshire, originating from Swindon. In fact, it was the only robot from Wiltshire to compete after Series 3.
  • With a volume of less than .08m3, Gyrobot was the smallest robot weighing 100kg ever to compete in Robot Wars. In comparison, Onslaught in Series 5 was roughly .14m3 and weighed 99kg.
  • Gyrobot has occasionally been on display at the Museum of Computing in Swindon. It currently resides in Steve Wood's garage.

ReferencesEdit

  1. https://www.facebook.com/GyrobotUK/posts/778808432257966?comment_id=778916278913848&reply_comment_id=778927752246034&ref=notif&notif_t=share_reply&notif_id=1477607293617177
  2. https://www.reddit.com/r/robotwars/comments/6fg6ot/a_video_of_vibrant_testing_out_the_brand_new/dii2oi4/

External LinksEdit

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