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Floats like a butterflyAs
the Third Wars of the BBC television series Robot Wars takes to our screens,
there is one class of fighting robot that has yet to enter the now familiar
arena. Despite having a rapidly increasing fan and owner base, these robots
have been ignored by the general public - but not for much longer. Fear
for your hands, the Antweights are coming!
are currently about 20 antweight robots in existence or being built now.
The weapon systems range from flails and scoops to cutters and axes.
robots are basically very small fighting machines, following in the same
vein as their heavyweight brothers. To qualify as an Antweight, the robot
must be less than 150 grammes in weight and must physically fit inside
a 4 inch cube. Aside from this, pretty much anything goes. Ants can have
any type of weaponary including flame throwers (something regarded by safety
experts as too dangerous for the heavyweights to have) and can be made
of household objects just as easily as they can from bought parts. |
|Antweight ||Weapon |
|Pants ||Righting arm / Axe |
|Cannon Fodder ||Silver flail |
|Dozer ||Shovel |
|Odessey ||Lifting scoop |
|Type 0 ||Walker - no weapon |
|TyrAnt ||Scoop |
|Toecutter ||Scoop |
|Scorch ||Flame thrower |
|Flipper ||Pneumatic flip |
|Grassbox ||Shovel ||Because
of the weight problems (and to prevent 'indestructible robots') metallic
armour is not allowed, so the robots have been made from card, balsa wood
and plastic. There is more of a challenge than heavyweights from the angle
that it is notoriously difficult to fit any weapons into something so light.
By the time you have radio control and drive motors, most of the 150g is
is another side to ants as well. In RW, people build a machine and then
wait for someone to provide them with an arena to fight in. With ants,
the arenas can be built as well. These can range from a simple 1 metre
square piece of MDF to a multi-level, electronic toy fest. And you can
challenge anyone to fight on any arena. Right here - right now!
round of the Antweight World Series, the only current competition, has
already been held and video and results from that event can be found on
A future event is now being planned for early 2000, with an increased line-up
and more arenas. The joy of watching your creation be thrown off a table
top only or cut through the body armour of another has to be experienced
to be believed. It's just fun! But don't under-estimate the little buggers.
A friend of mine was worried I was about to push his coffee off the desk
with Pants (my own antweight). He put his hand infront just as I released
the axe....and still has the scar to prove it. These things are dangerous
in ways you don't expect.
can build an ant. Rules can be found on this very site and once you have
some radio gear, then you can trawl the house and bins for inspiration.
But, if you want to take part without having to build, mail
us here at RobotWars101 to have an antweight or arena custom built
for you. Go on, you know you want too!