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General Updates

AluminumHighlight

2019 is the International Year of the Periodic Table, and Big Blue Saw is ready to serve you with all the right elements. Big Blue Saw is starting off the year with discounts on custom parts from 3 of our most popular stock materials, made from some amazing atoms. We have both aluminum 6061 and stainless steel 304 on sale during the month of January.

aluminum 100stainlesssteel 100aluminum 100stainlesssteel 100aluminum 100stainlesssteel 100aluminum 100

 

AluminumHighlightPerspective Monday, January 7-Wednesday, January 9: Save on 0.5 inch (½")  thick aluminum 6061

IronHighlightPerspective  Monday, January 14-Wednesday, January 16: Save on 0.12 inch  thick stainless steel 304

AluminumHighlightPerspective  Monday, January 21-Wednesday, January 23: 0.16 inch aluminum 6061

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All orders placed online for the sale materials during the sale period will automatically receive a quantity discount. That means that when you order as little as one part, you get the same price as if you had ordered 10.

Questions and Answers about Big Blue Saw's Sales During Robot Building Season

  • What is on sale?
    Custom parts from your designs made using 3 different stock materials. Each stock material is on sale during a different week. See the list above for material specifications and sale times. 

    Low-taper is not on sale.
  • How much will I save?
    Orders as small as 1 part will automatically receive the quantity 10 discounted price. The dollar amount depends on the design and quantity ordered. 
  • How can I order with the sale price?
    Just upload your design to our online quoting and ordering system, and check out through the website shopping cart. You will automatically receive the discount price when placing your order. No need to use coupon codes or other tricks.
  • I don't have a design. How can I make one?
    Use your favorite CAD or vector image software. If you don't have this kind of software, check out our list of free or low-cost alternatives. Also, be sure to  read about how to format your CAD files for use with Big Blue Saw
  • I didn't hear about your sale until just now and don't have time to get my design ready. When is your next sale?
    Sign up for our mailing list to get early notifications about the next sale.
  • I have special requirements for shipping, secondary machining, or rush processing my order. Can I still get the sale price?
    To get the sale price, orders must be placed through the website. So typically we cannot accommodate special requests for sale parts.

More About the Sale Materials

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Aluminum 6061, is our most popular material. Its primary component is, of course, aluminum, element 13. But it gains extra strength by being alloyed with its periodic table neighbors magnesium (element 12) and silicon (element 14).

IronHighlightPerspectiveChromiumHighlightPerspectiveNickelHighlightPerspective

Next is stainless steel 304. As the name suggests, it's mostly made of iron, element 26. But by blending iron with a healthy amount of chromium (24) and nickel (28), it becomes corrosion resistant stainless steel and able to stand up to harsh environments.

Let's Begin

Ready to order? Upload your design now to order waterjet cut parts online!

claw arm

If you're like many of our customers, you have questions about ordering from us. We've put together a list of Frequently Asked Questions to eliminate uncertainty and banish bewilderment. This has been a feature of our website from early on, but thanks to the diligent work of Customer Advocate Julie Simancek, we have recently added answers to many more of the most common questions we hear. Check them out:

And be sure to visit our full list of FAQs for the answers to more questions. Need to know something that's not in the FAQ list? Just email us at info@bigbluesaw.com or contact us via our contact page.

Motorama testbox

Jonathan and Duck Yeah at Motorama 2017

 Before he became world famous as the builder of HUGE, Jonathan Schultz was a senior in college who had never built a single robot. In 2016, he turned to Big Blue Saw to provide the parts for Duck Yeah, a 30 pound robot which fought at the Franklin Institute  and Motorama events.

I designed it after similar robots like Shaka that also compete in the 30lb Featherweight class in the northeast. The main difference that I tried to go for was to not pack electronics under the front wedge like similar competitors, but to have it be a breakaway wedge leaving smaller wedgelets underneath. And to have the wedgelets be breakaway from super thick front panels. 

Pretendobot 1

Duck Yeah in the assembly phase
 

 This worked well in competition, keeping all opponents from digging into the main chassis at all, leaving the internals untouched even though it suffered some fairly brutal losses. I just didn't account for how little grip the tires would have, resulting in opponents not being able to actually climb the wedge to get to the disk often. And a motor exploded just from general shock and vibration of combat.

Franklin Workbench

 Duck Yeah's 2016 appearance

 I brought it to the 2016 Franklin Institute event first, but it was unfinished and suffered reliability problems. I then brought it to Motorama 2017, and did well, getting a 3-2 record. 

Duck Yeah in action vs Poncho at Motorama in 2017

  

Robot Presentation

Who says fighting robots aren't educational? Jonathan's Senior project presentation.

 In its final fight, its disk got smashed to bits and I've spent the couple years since focusing on Huge-related stuff. I may drag it back out in the coming months, it still runs and drives fine, just needs a disk.

Broken Disk

The price of experience

Duck Yeah and HUGE

 Duck Yeah and Huge (not HUGE)

6061 T6 Aluminum .375 Assembly Sized.DXF.dxfS7 Tool Steel .750 Disc.DXF.dxf UHMW PE .250 A Sized.DXF.dxf UHMW PE .375 B Sized.DXF.dxf

Various CAD designs for Duck Yeah's parts

Big Ripto

Here's Big Ripto, Kyle Singer's 30 pound combat robot. Big Blue Saw helped supply the business end of this machine: the cutting disc low-taper waterjet cut from ⅞ inch thick S7 tool steel.

Since S7 is not a material we typically offer, Kyle sent us a piece to work from.

He designed the entire robot using Alibre Design CAD software.

BigRipto

Have a look at Big Ripto's big disc doing its thing against Duck Yeah! at Motorama Robot Conflict in 2017. Incidentally, Duck Yeah! also was built with parts custom made by Big Blue Saw.

A closeup of the disc and some of the damage it did: FB IMG 1538860573729

Can we cut metals for you like S7 that are not on our list of standard materials? Usually, yes! Just contact us to get the process started.

lukeFaulkinghamShake3

Luke Faulkingham wrote in to tell us about his fighting robot Shake 3. It's made with custom aluminum parts in 2 thicknesses, waterjet cut by Big Blue Saw! Here's what Luke has to say about the robot's design and manufacture:

The design is inspired by bots such as Sewer Snake and Tormenta 3 armed with a lifter that also operates as a front hinged flipper when run in reverse. The bot is made out of 6061 Aluminum, mostly 1/4” thick with some 1/2” parts in the weapon system for added strength, and uses NutStrip to hold the pieces together with tabs and slots for added strength. The bot also runs on two brushless motors for drive, allowing a high top speed and lots of pushing power. From the beginning the bot was designed with the intent of using waterjet cut pieces to make up the entire bot, using the precision and low tolerances to allow for added strength while also saving weight in the bot.

 W9W8 Y4G8 Shake 3 Frame.DXF

G9N1 E2B8 Half.DXF