Pin Connectors V3

by emmett, published

Pin Connectors V3 by emmett Nov 5, 2012
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UPDATE: I have made an improved and simplified pin connector library that I would recommend instead of this now: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:213310. This V3 library may still be best for certain situations, but for most, I think you'll like the new one better.

This is an update for tbuser's awesome pin library. I've been making enough use of these that I found a few changes that I think improve them significantly, though this should still function as a drop-in replacement for the V2 library. For all the people who've had trouble cramming the pins into my heart gears, this may help you make easier pins.

The primary changes are:

1) Wider gap keeps the pin nubs from getting jammed in a tight hole
2) Tolerance parameter on the pin side (instead of the hole side) because it's easier to reprint new pins if the fit is wrong
3) Extra tolerance parameter on holes (only for loose fit)
4) A fixed hole option that completely prevents rotation
5) Pinshaft module for making solid pin sections for longer pinpegs
6) Different pin sizes now have a more consistent shape
7) Minor changes to hole shape


Put pins.scad in your working directory and call it with the "use" command in your OpenSCAD file. Read through pins.scad for directions on using the modules (it's mostly very similar to tbuser's original).

UPDATE: At the request of PrettySmallThings, I've made this library customizable. That won't affect its usage in OpenSCAD, but now you can export custom pins and holes using Customizer, to import into your other CAD programs. I still suggest learning OpenSCAD, but now you can avoid it a little longer.

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I'm using these pins in a huge project for a contest in my fablab, and I have a question for people who tried it:
In the default dimensions, how much load can a pin hold? I am actually 5500km far away from my printer, and won't be able to test myself :(
For information, I'm making an "engineering lampshade", with gears and lot of mechanical stuff, and the lampshade itself (~~500g according to solidworks) is verticaly holded by 6 pins!
Do you think they can hold it?

I would love to use these pin connectors in my project, but I can seem to find the file for the "hole" for the pins. Thanks!

I'd like to be able to treat pins.scad as a library in another project, and be able to point people to the original so that it can be downloaded and imported without modification.

However, the "object=0;" and associated "if" clauses at the top mean that upon import, pins.scad will automatically generate a pin in the middle of the stage, even if that is not desired.

It's helpful to have a built-in example for new developers, but this behavior in "V3" is different than tbuser's original "V2" (which imports cleanly) and means the new pins.scad can't be swapped into place without modifying the source.

Actually, what you're looking for is the difference between the import() command and the use() command. One of those ignores top level objects in the library file and only makes the modules available. Because of this, I prefer to leave in a top level object as an example.

Would you be willing to upload the "hollow" part of this file as an STL? Open SCAD is on the learning list, but not there yet. 123D online now supports STL imports, and I'd love to be able to use this to do some boolean operations on parts to coordinate with your pins.

Good idea. I did you one better and made the library customizable, so you can export whatever pins or holes you might need, without needing any OpenSCAD knowhow.

Even more awesome. Thank you - much appreciated.

hi can i have an editable model ?

Cool, the fixed pinhole is a great idea.

Looks good, what's the gear assembly in the picture? I want to print one, it looks cool.

 That's only the beginning of that assembly. It's not quite done yet, but when it is, rest assured it'll be posted here.