Building with the V5 Workcell - Part 2: Motion

Assembling the VEX V5 Workcell is a fun and educational activity.



The Build Instructions found in the Seek section of the V5 Workcell STEM Labs provide parts lists and detailed illustrations to guide the learner with the assembly.

However, there are some tips and tricks which can make building even easier.

What are V5 Motion products?


The V5 Motion products which are utilized for the V5 Workcell include the V5 Smart Motors, the High-strength Sprockets/Chain, and Tank Tread.

The V5 Smart Motor is what moves the joints on the robotic arm, the conveyors, and the diverter attached to the V5 Workcell. They serve as the actuators for the V5 Workcell to cause the motion which takes place.

There is much additional information about V5 Smart Motors in the Motor section of articles.

The conveyors for the V5 Workcell consist of High-Strength Sprockets and Chains and Tank Tread.

Note: The transfer conveyor of the V5 Workcell has some conveyor links which are custom designed for the V5 Workcell.

Tips and Tricks when working with V5 Motion products

The V5 Smart Motors have a square socket which rotates. A square shaft can be inserted into this socket and it will be forced to spin. Some tips and tricks to help with this include:


Ensure the shafts are fully inserted into the shaft socket of the V5 Smart Motor.

There needs to be a shaft collar located on the shaft opposite from the motor socket and orientated so it will keep the shaft from coming out of the motor socket.

For more information about utilizing shafts with the V5 Smart Motor see the Using V5 Shafts article.

Some tips and tricks to help when assembling the conveyors and diverter include:

    • The High-Strength Chain and Tank Treads are assembled by connecting individual links together and this allows for custom lengths to be used between sprockets. The links can be assembled by bringing two together at a slight angle, aligning the hole on one link with the boss on the next. Then twist the two links until they snap together as a unit.

      Example of High-Strength Chain.

      Example of Tank Treads.

    • To disassemble chain/Tank Tread links, reverse the procedure.


One technique which may help when connecting the two ends of an assembled chain/Tank Tread is to lay the chain/Tank Tread on a sprocket while connecting the two ends.


Ensure the square metal inserts or round plastic inserts are placed in the High-Strength Sprockets prior to assembling them onto a shaft.


The diverter needs a Shaft Lock Plate attached to it so it will turn with the shaft. A lock plate and a bearing can be confused because they look similar. The Shaft Lock Plate has a square center hole and a bearing has a round center hole.

For more information, help, and tips, check out the many resources at VEX Professional Development Plus

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