- "While other axe/hammer robots jump as their weapon is deployed, Bonk’s custom made CO2 gas system minimises the jump. This allows all of its energy to be focused on the axe’s impact."
- — The Robot Wars website
Bonk, alternatively titled Bonk!, was a heavyweight robot built by Team Mute, which competed in Series 8 of Robot Wars. It lost its Group Battle after it was immobilised by Carbide and flipped over by Behemoth, the pneumatics system for its axe malfunctioning due to the cold temperatures of the arena.
- "The sharpened axe aims to penetrate opponents armour or shock damage opponents internal components. If the team do manage to penetrate an opponents armour with the axe and it gets stuck inside the robot, it could lift the whole robot up and carry any of its opponents."
- — The Robot Wars website
Bonk's weapon was a full-pressure 10 bar pneumatic axe. It was armoured in 8mm HARDOX wear resistant steel at the front, and 6mm wear resistant steel on the sides, with its bladed axe being not only capable of penetrating a robot's armour, but also righting the robot. It could also lift up to 130kg when attached to something, theoretically making Bonk capable of lifting a competitor when its axe was buried inside. Bonk also used a custom CO2 system to stay rooted to the ground while its axe is firing, as opposed to the way robots such as Terrorhurtz leap off the arena floor. Three forked wedgelets were found at the front of Bonk, to provide the robot with a low frontal clearance, although Bonk otherwise had a relatively high ground clearance. Bonk suffered from unreliability on the live circuit, and this carried over to its televised appearance, where it was immobilised promptly.
Bonk qualified for Series 8 through open application, possibly being chosen based on Mute's previous pedigree. Team Mute also intended to enter Series 8 with Mute, which competed in Series 7 of the original Robot Wars as well as the New Blood Championship in the second series of Robot Wars Extreme. However, they could not complete Mute in time, as its new batteries and speed controllers were making its motors too warm, requiring more testing than the time allowed. Bonk later applied for Series 9, but was not selected to compete,. Team Mute did not apply for Series 10, wishing to dedicate more time to the completion of Bonk's upgrades.
When the battle begun, Bonk saw Carbide as an immediate threat, and rammed into the back of it at full speed. It fired its axe to attack Carbide, but the axe became stuck in this position. This was due to the low temperatures of the arena causing Bonk's CO2 system to freeze, leaving Bonk at an immediate disadvantage.
Bonk was chased by Behemoth, where Bonk then became trapped on an arena spike, which held it above the ground momentarily. Despite the lack of a weapon or srimech after its axe failure, Bonk continued to contribute, and tried to pin Behemoth down when it flipped itself over. Bonk pushed Carbide aside, and shrugged off an attack from The General. However, when Carbide charged in to attack The General's tyre, Bonk was hit by the same blow, and was immobilised by a big hit. Behemoth pushed Bonk over the flame pit, and turned it over, where it officially started being counted out. CO2 vented from Bonk, as it was hit by Carbide twice more. Cease was called, and Bonk was eliminated, leaving Team Mute's record against Behemoth at one-a-piece.
- "Bonk, good luck with the train home!"
- — Dara Ó Briain
|BONK - RESULTS|
|Series 8 - UK Championship|
|Heat 1, Group Battle||vs. Behemoth, Carbide, The General||Eliminated|
- Wins: 0
- Losses: 1
|Main Series||Bonk Series Record|
|The First Wars||Did not enter|
|The Second Wars||Did not enter|
|The Third Wars||Did not enter|
|The Fourth Wars||Withdrew from qualifiers with Mute|
|The Fifth Wars||Failed to qualify with Mute|
|The Sixth Wars||Failed to qualify with Mute|
|The Seventh Wars||Entered with Mute and Micro Mute|
|Series 8||Heat, Round 1|
|Series 9||Not selected|
|Series 10||Did not enter|
|Robot Wars Extreme||Appearances|
|Series 1||Did not enter|
|Series 2||Entered with Mute and Micro Mute|
Robot Wars Live Events
Following on from the team's highly successful run at live events with Mute, Bonk made its Robot Wars debut at the Winter Tour of 2013. However, it lost in the first round. It returned for the Gloucester event in 2014 where it was defeated by Dystopia.
Outside Robot Wars
Bonk also competed regularly in Robots Live! events prior to its appearance in Series 8, notably chopping off the axe head of Titan in one battle. Its axe was also equipped with interchangeable heads (though only a bladed head was used on television), and the robot received the 'Best Promising Newcomer' award from the Fighting Robots Association in 2014.
By March 2017, Team Mute was in the process of working on an upgraded version of Bonk with a larger axe and more prominent front wedge shape. It subsequently appeared at the MakeFest Stoke event as a static display alongside Mute, though this version has yet to appear in combat.