we may not get there

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PostPosted: October 3, 2013 1:16 AM 

Anybody check out Mahli sol 411 images? The wheels are full-o-holes.


Posts: 125

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PostPosted: October 3, 2013 11:18 AM 

I was thinking the same thing. If the wheels get much worse they will have to send AAA up there to change a tire or two.

I thought they would have been tested the wheels thoroughly for tough Mars conditions before launch?

Kye Goodwin

Posts: 1166

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PostPosted: October 3, 2013 10:19 PM 

Thanks John. Wow! Dents are one thing but now it looks like two substantial holes right through the metal have appeared in this wheel. In this image (post 0) the holes are just above and just below the bend in the box frame "axle". The edges of the lower hole seem to be fractures!? The upper hole shows light through and a bent tab of metal. Somebody tell me I've got this wrong.


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PostPosted: October 4, 2013 1:33 AM 


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PostPosted: October 4, 2013 2:56 AM 

I did read on UMSF forum that it poses no problem. The wheels are thin as a beer can and can even drive on the spokes if it comes to that. Lets hope so. There is another sol 411 image that shows two wheels and both are full-o-holes. I wonder why the reason for imaging the wheels.


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PostPosted: October 4, 2013 6:17 AM 

It is not a problem whatsoever, if you look at videos etc. of the test vehicles here on Earth you will see the wheels are tattered at the end of the tests.

Basically MSL could operate even if the wheels were worn down to the basic Titanium frame it moves so slowly sqaure wheels would work! Shocked


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PostPosted: October 5, 2013 4:31 AM 

Kevin, do you have any links.....?


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PostPosted: October 5, 2013 7:08 PM 


Sweet i bought some and the certificates are amazing Very Happy


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PostPosted: October 7, 2013 8:44 AM 

Hi John,

NASA sites are down but if you go 7 minutes into this video there is an explaination on how durable the wheels are and large holes and dents are expected to occur.



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PostPosted: October 8, 2013 3:21 AM 

Thanks Kevin.


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PostPosted: December 25, 2013 2:05 AM 

It has been said. The holes are of no consequence. Yet they seem to image the wheels at different times. Is it on a regular basis? Or is it a not on a regular basis. I guess I'm going to have to go back sol by sol and see if there is a regular interval they look at the wheels. Like checkups at a certain distance driven? Or are the wheels looked at after seeing something in a wheel track? They imaged them before there were holes. OR does anyone here have info on this? If we could come up with what and when graphs , we could figure out WHY the wheels are imaged.


Posts: 125

Reply: 11

PostPosted: December 25, 2013 10:59 AM 

John, Reply 10. JPL engineers are concerned about the recent holes and cuts in the wheels and have undertaken a study; thus all the recent photos of the wheels from different angles. They may be contemplating taking routs that are less rocky to prevent more damage. Check here -


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PostPosted: December 26, 2013 7:07 PM 

Thanks RJS. I googled wheel imagery and found starting at sol 469, they started really looking at the wheels HARD. Between your link and the flurry of wheel images, seems they ARE worried.

Bill Harris

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Reply: 13

PostPosted: December 27, 2013 3:53 AM 

The whole Curiosity wheel, errr, spin reminds me of the Monty Python "Black Knight" skit from the Holy Grail: "I've 'ad worse" "just a flesh wound" "no problem". The wheels are showing more damage and faster deterioration than I would have expected after just a few months of operation. Look at Oppy's and Spirit's wheels after several years of roving.

And given the loud denials of a problem by the JPL Lackeys at USF, I suspect that there is a problem of concern... Wink

My prediction is that we'll see an early demise of MSL due to wheel failure.



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PostPosted: December 27, 2013 8:53 AM 

Well NASA have been keeping an eye on the wheels and are going to try and traverse smoother terrain on its way to Mt.Sharpe. They know the wheels can take quite a pounding but recently the dents and cuts seems to have accelerated and that needs to be managed.



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PostPosted: December 28, 2013 6:37 PM 

I was reading this same thread on UMSF and found it absolutely hilarious to compare the completely condescending and dickheadish remarks by some ahem, djellison, at the beginning of that thread about how "everything is perfectly fine, concerns about wheel damage are not..repeat NOT valid, I'm not sure how long it's going to take until saying 'the wheels are fine' before it gets boring, and heavy to industrial strength sighing, etc.," to the reality later in the thread that the team is genuinely concerned about the wheels to the point of altering drives to reduce wear.

Funny stuff.

Joe Smith

Posts: 86

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PostPosted: December 29, 2013 9:44 AM 

What really gets me about that other site is
''no thinking allowed'' ,,, No Opinions,,, no
arguments,, no problems,,,,just pictures.


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PostPosted: December 30, 2013 9:40 AM 

No two ways about it NASA are looking at the routes they are going to traverse even if that means going the long way around. If Oppy can last 10 years in theory so can Curiosity so why risk losing the wheels and turning it into a Lander?

This site is the best as there is more free thinking and quite often our thoughts and ideas are vindicated.

Mark Wilson

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PostPosted: December 31, 2013 3:25 AM 

Oh,, I was thinking about the thread on "that other site" when this JPL press release about the wheels came out. Anyone that expressed any concern was swiftly slapped down in their usual style lol


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PostPosted: December 31, 2013 6:38 AM 

Well Doug is on You Tube telling the world that the wheels can break down to their basic skeleton and still work so no one must say otherwise.


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PostPosted: December 31, 2013 11:48 AM 

So why would they have put the webbing on the frame if it wasn't necessary? And might not the webbing be protection from some of those sharp rocks getting into the mechanism in the wheels themselves? Couldn't such putative damage stop affected wheels from moving?

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