The field is where the Robot Game takes place. It consists of a field mat, on a table, with mission models arranged on top. The field mat and the LEGO® pieces for building the mission models are part of your Field Setup Kit. The instructions for building the mission models are not part of the field but available online: www.first-lego-league.org/en/fll/robot-game/buildinginstruction.html. The instructions how to build the table is online: www.first-lego-league.org/en/general/participation.html#4. How to arrange the mission models on the playing field is explained in this document.
Step 1: Vacuum the table top carefully. Even the tiniest particle under the mat can give the robot trouble. After vacuuming, run your hand over the surface and sand or file down any protruding imperfections you find. Then vacuum again.
Step 2: On the vacuumed surface (never unroll the mat in an area where it could pick up particles), unroll the mat so the image is up and its north edge is near the north/double border wall (note the location of the double wall in each table sketch below). BE VERY CAREFUL TO NOT LET THE MAT KINK (BEND IN TWO DIRECTIONS AT ONCE).
Step 3: The mat is smaller than the playing surface by design. Slide and align it so that there is no gap between the south edge of the mat and the south border wall. Center the mat in the east-west direction (look for equal gaps at left and right).
Step 4: With help from others, pull the mat at opposite ends and massage out any waviness away from the center and re-check the requirement of Step 3. It is expected that some waviness will persist, but that should relax over time. Some teams use a hair dryer to speed the relaxation of the waviness.
Step 5 - OPTIONAL: To hold the mat in place, you may use a thin strip of black tape at the east and west ends. Where the tape sticks to the mat, it may cover the mat’s black border only. Where the tape sticks to the table, it may stick to the horizontal surface only, and not the walls.
Step 6: For a competition setup, dummy walls are not needed. Secure two tables north-to-north. The total span of border between two tables must measure between 3” (76mm) and 4” (100mm).
Alignment of mats on double / single (competition / practice) field
Mission Model Construction
Build the mission models. Use the LEGO elements from your Field Setup Kit, and instructions from this page www.first-lego-league.org/en/fll/robot-game/buildinginstruction.html. It will take a single person four to five hours to do this, so it’s best done in a work party. For any team members with little or no experience building with LEGO elements, mission model construction is a great way to learn. This step is also a nice time for new team members to get acquainted with each other.
Usage of Dual Lock
Some models are secured to the mat, others are not. Where a model needs to be secured, the connection is made using the re-usable fastening material from 3M called Dual Lock, which comes in the flat clear bag with the LEGO elements in your Field Setup Kit. Dual Lock is designed to stick or “lock” to itself when two faces of it are pressed together, but you can unlock it too, for ease of transport and storage. The application process for the Dual Lock is only needed once. Later, the models can simply be locked onto the mat or unlocked.
To apply Dual Lock:
Step 1: Stick one square, adhesive side down, on each box you see on the mat with an “X” in it.
Step 2: Press a second square on top of each of those, “Locking” them on, adhesive side up. Instead of using your finger, use a bit of the wax paper the squares came on.
Step 3: Lower the model onto the squares.
Pay attention... Some models look symmetrical, but do indicate a directional model feature somewhere. Be sure to place each square precisely on its box, and each model precisely over its marks. When pressing a model down, press down on its lowest solid structure instead of crushing the whole model. Pull on that same structure if later you need to separate the model from the mat. For large and/or flexible models, apply only one or two sets at a time. There’s no need to do it all at once.
Remove any obvious splinters, and cover any obvious holes.
Make sure the mat touches the south border wall, and is centered east to west. Avoid cleaning the mat with anything that will leave a residue. Any residue, sticky or slippery, will affect the robot’s performance compared to a new mat (many tournaments use new mats). Use a vacuum and/or damp cloth for dust and debris (above and below the mat). To get marks off, try a white-plastic pencil eraser. When moving the mat for transport and storage, be sure not to let it bend into a sharp kink point, which could affect the robot’s movement. Tournaments using new mats should unroll the mats as far in advance of the tournament day as possible. For control of extreme curl at the east or west edges of the mat, tape is allowed, with a maximum of ¼” (6 mm) overlap. Foam tape is not allowed. Do NOT put Dual Lock under the mat, or use it in any other than securing models as described.
Keep the models in original condition by straightening and tightening solid connections often. Ensure that spinning axles spin freely by checking for end-to-end play and replacing any that are bent
Arrangement of Mission Models on Field
The correct placement of the mission models on the mat is described in the text as well as shown on the corresponding pictures and location marks on the mat. Details which are not mentioned or shown are left to chance and are officially irrelevant.
If placing another animal other than reindeer, put reindeer on that animal’s mark facing west: