Ultimate Tornado Tube

by USWaterRockets, published

Ultimate Tornado Tube by USWaterRockets Apr 27, 2016

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Alibre Design Personal Edition

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This is our take on the classic "Tornado Tube", used for joining soda bottles together to create huge water rockets.

A short video about this design can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/j6wLRHK3ATE

The "tornado tube" name comes from a science toy used to connect bottles together to create a vortex when water moves from one bottle to another. Water rocket builders quickly seized upon the science toy and repurposed it as a water rocket coupler. However, the science toy version is notorious for leaking pressure and also known for choking the flow inside the rocket.

Our design uses an external o-ring seal on each end, which we discovered when designing our Gardena water rocket nozzle (you can find it among our other things). This creates an unrestricted flow between bottles for optimum performance.

To use this design, you will need a #213 O-ring for each end, or you can optionally use a flat hose washer between the bottles, but this does not seal as well.

Caution: You use this part at your own risk. We cannot guarantee the safety of this part due to the differences between printers and filaments. Always safety test parts like this and follow proper safety measures when dealing with Water Rockets. Use with adult supervision.

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0.1mm Layer Height




I've printed in ABS, PETG, and PLA. They all come out great. If you threads are tight and hard to get on the bottle, try scaling your print larger by a tiny amount. You could also be overextruding and need to calibrate the extruder.


The overhangs are all created to require no support, so you should only need minimal cleanup.

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I have a question, What makes this so "ultimate". Is it any better than the others?

I don't have a 3D Printer. How can I get some ultimate tornado tubs? My son would love to make some water rockets. Can you please help me?

check you local libraries and colleges some of them might have a 3D printer that they might let you use at cost or for free.

How can I order about 15 ultimate tornado tubs. I want to help my son make some. I home school him. He loves anything that has to do with science.

Download the files and go to 3Dhubs.com to have them printed for you. Make sure you specify in the comments that this has to screw onto a 2 liter bottle so the person printing it can test it out for you.

Time for a new summer hobby haha.

hello im from korea.
i enjoy looking your activity about rocket. so i printed this things but unfortunatly this size is not collect in korea bottle cap ㅠ.ㅠ how should i do??
help me please~

This is likely caused by the calibration of your printer. This part has tight tolerances. If your printer is overextruding or is not printing to scale, it will be hard to screw on. If you think the part won't screw on, you can try scaling it up a tiny amount and that works around a lot of calibration issues.

Should I scale it up by 0.1 or 0.05? Also will it still work without the o rings?

I would start with the smaller scaling value first. If you scale it too much it will be loose and could pop off under pressure. The design has the ability to use the two O-rings or a single 1" flat waster between the bottles. If you leave out the seals then it will most likely leak air or water. If you use a flat washer, then you won't be able to slide a launch tube through the tube because the washer is in that area.