Projects blog

Pneumatic Screwdriver by Vincent Groenhuis January 10 2020

By developing and publishing practically usable designs, we can show that 3D printing can be part of everybody's life where the production is actually met by demand. Vincent Groenhuis is a researcher at Robotics and Mechatronics, University of Twente, in the Netherlands. He developed this Pneumatic Screwdriver with the hope of making DIY pneumatics more popular in the 3D printing community.

 

"I myself enjoy developing all sorts of 3-D printable pneumatic devices," Vincent explains. As a research project at first and later also as a hobby, he first created the R-52 and R-66 pneumatic rotary engines. To make these engines usable next step had to be building a casing with a handle and controls around it, creating the Pneumatic Screwdriver. 

Working on a highly technical project like this also poses many unforeseen challenges. "On the technical side, I gained useful experience in, for example designing gearboxes and how to efficiently combine a throttle lever with a direction valve inside a small volume," Vincent explains.

He learned that starting with a simple design that does the job is more effective than jumping head-on into a very complicated design that may take way too much time to make it actually work.

Vincent's direct goal was to develop a pneumatic screwdriver that is not only sufficiently compact and powerful but can also be built using current-day 3D printers while using a minimum of external parts. This screwdriver does not drive the screw too fast and can be an easy used in practical screw-driving tasks.

"I myself call this mission a success!" Vincent says with excitement. "I made two functional pneumatic screwdrivers. The one with the bigger motor (R-52) works best. I hope it lasts for a long time before breaking down. A future improvement would be the inclusion of dual-speed gear transmission allowing drilling applications."

The whole Pneumatic Screwdriver was printed in PLA Extrafill with the minimal additional items. For a mechanical print like this, PLA is an unusual material choice. However, for Vincent, this was an ideal option."PLA is easy to print and good enough for many mechanical applications. If a specific part ever breaks down, then I usually prefer to re-design the model rather than pushing the material limits by using a different material," he explains. Using PLA Extrafill Vertigo Starlight for the bodywork, Gold Happens for the bodywork details, Rapunzel Silver for the gears and Everybody's Magenta for the throttle and direction switches. This resulted in a neat, unique look.

We asked Vincent why did choose the Fillamentum filament and a PLA for technical print such is this "Fillamentum filament look good especially the metallic (Pearl) ones. It definitely gives the model some added value. I also have a multi-material printer, and it turns out that the Fillamentum (metallic) PLA filament consistently allows for reliable automatic color changes using just stock settings in the slicer," Vincent explains.

Get the Pneumatic screwdriver model on Vincent's and the Pneumatic Rotary Engine also on his Thingiverse. You can find there all the assembly and technical information.

Models:
Pneumatic screwdriver 
R-38 Pneumatic Bourke Rotary Engine

Printed with:
PLA Extrafill Vertigo Starlight: bodywork (most layers)
PLA Extrafill Gold Happens: bodywork details (switch filament during printing: between 2.5 and 3.5 mm and between 26.5 and 27.5 mm) 
PLA Extrafill Rapunzel Silver: gears (including bit holder), spring for the throttle return
PLA Extrafill Everybody's Magenta: throttle and direction switches

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Mechdonalds Printed by Grafit February 27 2019

He is from Hungary and we met on Twitter while he was using our materials for really nice and clean printing. “I am already helping Fernando with his top secret project, beta testing at 40% size”. We knew we are on the same page to make some good collaboration!

*Fernando Jerez is our long-time friend, he’s talented designer who started the wavey madness with his generative design.

Hello Grafit,
When I was asking you about some ideas for a new bigger project, you wanted to print exactly this amazing design by Juri Pranjic. How did you find the model?
I have seen this earlier on Twitter when Juri designed it and started printing his own. I became a follower of @3dworkbench instantly.

Two materials in seven different colours, tell us more about the printing process ... Which printer you used, how long did it take to print? Did you use any tricks or special set up for printing?
Well, the CPE Red Hood filament was a completely new material for me. And because it needed high temperature, I used my Prusa i3 MK3 for that job. No failures there. It came out nicely in the first round. On the pictures you can see, it is the tomato slice.
Since I scaled up this awesome model to 140% I had to use some tricks. For example, on the original model, every part of the burger is solid. However in a perfect world, you will never see the inside of the tomato slice, and the meat etc. so I decided to cut out most parts. The tomato slice is a ring eventually. I will post some making-of photos on my twitter later.
Ender 3 printed the burger buns (Light Ivory PLA), and the limbs (Vertigo Grey PLA). Everything else was printed on the Prusa i3 MK3.
Fries & Cheese (Melon Yellow PLA), Lettuce (Grass Green PLA), Meat (Purple Red PLA), Shields (Traffic White PLA)

Did you have any issues with stringing on CPE? Because when it’s moist, it can be  hairy printing.
Moisture did not get any chance since that was a perfectly packaged brand new spool; and after printing, I put it right back to the reusable ziplock bag. :)

It’s not an easy design but definitely worth it. What did you need for assembling it?
For the burger, I have used hot glue gun. And I designed and printed a custom fitting ring for some of the parts. The legs and arms are just slide in. For the thrusters, I used a small strip of kapton tape to make some friction so they would not fall out.

With upscaling to this giant size there can be an issue with stability which isn’t there in the original size. We almost didn’t manage to make it stand. Do you think it’s something what can decrease the head part weight to reduce the pressure on the legs? Of course he is super-awesome while sitting too, but.. : )
Yeah, the upscaling generated some issues with the tolerances. His joints became a lil’ loose. I think the main issue are the knees. I would glue them to a fix position, or drill and use a screw and a nut through the knee joint. I was able to get him standing with fries box on his back. :) I have a proof.

What are your feelings from Fillamentum materials?
I really love just everything about Fillamentum. The box, reusable ziplock packaging for moisture defense, beautiful glass clear spool, and of course, filament itself. It comes in beautiful vivid colours and quality material. I’ve never had any problems related to the material. Oh, and the surprise stickers! :)
Thank you 💛

The world is divided into two parts…. Ketchup or mayo to your french fries?: )
Lol! Ketchup.

Any ambitions for next projects?
I really like multipart models where you can combine a lot of filaments together.
That is where nice colours and glittery materials can show their beauty and form awesome combinations together. So definitely I would print something big, multipart thing with perfect material combinations.
I recently started to paint some models but then you can just use any filament. :)

 

Laila for scale : )

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