I think you pretty much nailed it.I see your point, however, you did over exaggerate to an extent.
Scoring works like this:
55 points for the device being legal, labeled, fits in 40*40*60 cube etc.
100 points for finishing building in 30 minutes
17 points for correctly aligning the mousetraps
58 points for starting the task
60 points for setting off all 4 mousetraps in 1 minute.
2 points for each second that the device operates under 1 minute
42 points if it operates for 5 seconds before setting off 1st trap
35 points for each mousetrap tripped by the device (This is vague, let me know what they say if you send in a rule clarification on this)
Then you can get up to 250 points for tripping the traps in the order of N, S, W, E (N is worth 25, S is worth 50, W is worth 75, E is worth 100)
I personally don't see anything on a penalty for the mousetrap bouncing around, but let me know if I am.
18 point penalty each time the device is touched
8 points per cm that the mousetrap is off from defined distance (If this is what you mean by that, I take this as aligned before the device starts operating, and it doesn't matter where it goes after it snaps.
The impound is going to be annoying though, since the box is so small, nothing will fit if it's put together beforehand.
Also, (Eyeball can yell at me for looking too far ahead here) but how would I go about finding a formula for how long my tubes should be/how heavy my marbles should be, etc. for the National level, where the lengths can differ from mousetrap to mousetrap? Thanks.
in the penalties part of the rules say that touching a marble to roll down a ramp is a direct touchAs for your first question - no, that would be fine.
"Direct touch" means, you doing anything other than releasing the golf ball, ie: setting off the mousetrap with a pencil, pushing some other element that didn't go off correctly...
Basically: all you're allowed to do is release a golf ball. Anything the device does on its own after that is fine, anything you have to activate or do or touch will incur a penalty.
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