"Crank-E is a completely new robot with more power, better armour and a stronger weapon than Kill-E-Crank-E."
— The Robot Wars website

Crank-E was a heavyweight robot which competed in Series 9 of Robot Wars. It was the successor to Kill-E-Crank-E, built by Robin Herrick of the Cold Fusion Team. However, after encountering Aftershock in its Group Battle, it was quickly immobilised and eliminated.

After Series 9, the team updated Crank-E with new weapons and armour, but it was not ready to apply for Series 10.


"The new Crank-E is invertible and has two-wheel drive and a 22-kilogram central vertical asymmetric spinner which rotates at 6,000 revolutions per minute with a tip speed of 250 miles per hour."
— The Robot Wars website

Crank-E's turntable shot

Built over two months, Crank-E was constructed from high-performance structural steel and wear plate, and runs on a two-wheel drive, which makes the robot invertible. Its weapon was a 22kg vertical asymmetric spinner consisting of four hardened steel bars. The weapon rotated at 6000rpm to deliver a tip speed of 223mph. Its front armour was curved inwards to form a front shield, designed to make the robot 'spinner proof'. Crank-E was decorated with googly eyes.

The internal foil used by Crank-E

The insides of Crank-E were lined with aluminium foil tape, to protect the robot from the flame pit. Crank-E's wheels were the same type as use in Pussycat, following on from Kill-E-Crank-E's wheels reusing material from Bodyhammer.


"The name Crank-E was a step on the evolutionary ladder towards Kill-E-Crank-E, so while the robot design evolved forwards, the name evolved backwards."
— Robin Herrick on the etymology of Crank-E

The name Crank-E is derivative of the robot's predecessor Kill-E-Crank-E, which was in turn inspired by the Scottish Highland town of Killiecrankie, where a famous battle took place in 1689, also referencing the "crank" shape of the original machine which remained loosely intact with Crank-E. Robin Herrick notes that as Crank-E evolved the design of Kill-E-Crank-E forwards, he wished to 'evolve the name backwards' by shortening Kill-E-Crank-E to just Crank-E, a conscious move to differentiate the two machines.

Robot History

Series 9

Crank-E competed in Heat 1, facing a new machine from a Grand Finalist team, Aftershock, as well as Sabretooth and TMHWK in their group battle. It was going to face against Carbide, Crackers 'n' Smash and Meggamouse in Heat 5 but it was not finished in time and swapped heats with Trolley Rage.

Crank-E is tossed up high by Aftershock

However, when the battle started, Crank-E made a fatal mistake straight away by targeting Aftershock before its spinner had reached high speeds, and with TMHWK blocking its escape route, Aftershock threw Crank-E into the air, causing shards to fly from the machine as it landed directly on its face. This gave Aftershock the chance to launch a barrage of hits, buffeting Crank-E towards Shunt, where the two robots dealt the killer blows, taking Crank-E out of the running straight away. Panels of Crank-E were torn away from the body, and the robot was left dormant after a flip from Shunt.

"Pincered between the two, and Crank-E, very much in trouble."
Jonathan Pearce

Shunt damages the immobile Crank-E

Aftershock pushed the immobile Crank-E over the arena spikes, where it was axed by Shunt, held aloft by a spike. There, Crank-E was joined by the beaten TMHWK, and cease was called. Humorously, the arena spike next to Crank-E fell out of its position, but Aftershock and Sabretooth progressed, while Crank-E was eliminated.


Series 9
Series 9 - UK Championship
Round 1
Heat 1, Group Battle vs. Aftershock, Sabretooth, TMHWK Lost

Series Record

Crank-E with its team

Series Crank-E Series Record
The First Wars Entered with Bodyhammer
The Second Wars Entered with Bodyhammer
The Third Wars Entered with Pussycat
The Fourth Wars Entered with Pussycat
The Fifth Wars Did not enter
The Sixth Wars Did not enter
The Seventh Wars Did not enter
Series 8 Entered with Kill-E-Crank-E
Series 9 Heat, Round 1
Series 10 Did not enter

NOTE: This refers to the performance record of Robin Herrick alone


Crank-E in How to Build a Robot

  • Crank-E's VT, which would go unused on television, saw Robin and Matthew Herrick, and Isaac Potts, playing musical instruments on the beach[1].
  • Footage of repairing Crank-E was also used during How to Build a Robot.


External Links

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