Tuesday, June 14, 2005


Bolt-based Polymorph Pusher MkII Proposal

Having seen Adrians wondrous system using the pinch bolts - and incidentally having just got hold of my pinch-wheel design out of the Stratasys - I've had another bit of activity in the brain cell. Why not use the bolt thread?

Trap a Polymorph rod next to a bolt in an enclosed space, turn the bolt and keep it steady - Polymorph moves along the thread. There's an inherent high gearing and ratchet from using the thread, but we might need to put a bit of spring-loading (easily FDM'd) in there to hold the Polymorph firmly against it and make up for any imperfections in the feedstock.

Also, the bolt can then hold a drive gearwheel, keyed onto a nut (or two if you want to be really sure, and want to locknut it without compressing the gear). The stress on the gear wheel might be low enough to enable the use of extruded plastic gears.

No prototype photos yet - I only had the idea this morning. Funding permitting (Suz is still very budget-conscious) I might get a cheap electric screwdriver on the weekend and see if it can drive the thread directly.

Vik :v)

This is brilliant because it's so simple. I've done some initial experiments, and the friction forces (which might get in the way) don't seem too high. So I've designed one and am RP-ing it now (Friday). Hope to have it working and blogged over the w.e.
If anyone asks why someone would want a home RP machine, this is a good example. You need a part, so you design it, print it and have it ready for the weekend.
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