Robots

The Volleyball Machine

Automatic Volleyball Machine

Profta
Rating

5

About the Project

Practice makes perfect. Watching my daughter's team practice, I quickly realized that the girls who had siblings who also played volleyball to practice with, improved at a MUCH higher rate than the other members of the team. The ability to hit hundreds of balls a day, to practice passing and setting with another player for hours outside of regularly scheduled team practice, was a huge advantage. I immediately went looking for a practice machine - they have them for baseball, tennis, and other sports; there must be one for volleyball! And there were. The machines I found were expensive. They were very limited in their capabilities. And the ones that offered more capability were even MORE expensive! There wasn't a high quality, versatile volleyball practice machine at a reasonable price on the market. So I decided to make one! Before getting to this point and launching this campaign, months were spent building various prototypes using different mechanisms to launch the balls. Getting it right meant not only getting the power to achieve the correct height and distance ranges, but duplicating the "feel" - the speed, spin, and lay, of a hand-set or hand-passed volleyball in play. The pneumatic arm-and-hammer design I landed on works far better in this capacity than electric motors or actuators, air cannons, spinning wheels, or direct impingement pneumatic rams. I wanted to add features while keeping the cost low. Adding Bluetooth music was a no-brainer! The ability to fire the ball on-panel or by wireless remote. Height and angle adjustment at the touch of a button - and also by remote! A reliable ball feeding mechanism that wouldn't bind or jam. Battery operation with long life for hours of practice (and music!) without difficulty. And it has to be light enough for a 12 year old girl to move around safely and easily - even over sand. And that's what I've built. I hope you like it!

View on Kickstarter

  • Founder: Richard Rood
  • Company: The Volleyball Machine
  • Goal: $100,000.00
  • Entry Level Price: $599.00
  • Campaign Ended On: July 31, 2017
  • Delivery Date: December 2017

"About the Project" and "Claims" content are taken from the campagin as is.

Reality Check

  • Claim:

    The ability to fire the ball on-panel or by wireless remote.

  • Reality:

    The tech is existent and possible for a wireless remote to control the ability to launch a volleyball.

  • Claim:

    Height and angle adjustment at the touch of a button - and also by remote!

  • Reality:

    The possibility for this to function is already existent as well.

Something To Think About

As you think about backing The Volleyball Machine, consider that there is not a fully demonstrated prototype that showcases in detail the function of the adjustment, remote, and further elements of The Volleyball Machine.

  • Claim:

    Battery operation with long life for hours of practice (and music!) without difficulty.

  • Reality:

    Working on the power of a battery is possible. However, the specifications are missing on the campaign and website.

  • Claim:

    And it has to be light enough for a 12 year old girl to move around safely and easily - even over sand.

  • Reality:

    Without dimensions, weight specs, and further details in working through the different prototypes, the ability for a 12 year old to carry The Volleyball Machine is elusive.

Bottom Line

The idea of seeing a need and producing a product that resolves the need is inspiring! The Volleyball Machine tells the story of that very idea. The stats and supporting information that provide a foundation for this project and the end user to back it are elusive and lacking.

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