Wind-Up Engine V1.2 Updated - Fully Printed

by cymon, published

Wind-Up Engine V1.2 Updated - Fully Printed by cymon Dec 8, 2012

Featured Thing!

1 Share
Download All Files

Thing Apps Enabled

Order This Printed View All Apps


Liked By

View All

Give a Shout Out

If you print this Thing and display it in public proudly give attribution by printing and displaying this tag.

Print Thing Tag


Thing Statistics

25352Views 1754Downloads


WIP. So far there has not been a successful 3D printed engine but this is the idea: A 3D printed spring's energy is captured and released to a series of gears. The design so far is promising but needs work.

Update with upload of V1.2: http://joesmakerbot.blogspot.com/2013/01/fully-3d-printed-engine-update-2.html


Refer to the exploded diagram as you read these steps.

  1. Print the spring in ABS with zero fill layers, zero infill, and 4 extra layers. (Not discounting PLA, but I don't know the settings.)
  2. Cut the spring at the obtuse angles to make 2 springs. Flip one so that their curves compliment each other (like a flat DNA helix).
  3. Print the rest of the pieces with your normal settings.
  4. Place the springs inside the case, side by side.
  5. Put the drive gear with the straight line of teeth on. Line up the groove beneath the teeth onto the ridge on the case, putting the arm through the hole into the case to cap off the end of the case to compress the springs. (Does anyone have better names for these parts?)
  6. Put GearIn1 in the left most hole on the case so that the teeth mesh with the drive's straight teeth.
    7, Glue the pin in the GearFloater. Put it in the next leftmost long hole
  7. Put the GearOut1 (with the shorter secondary gear) in the next leftmost hole.
  8. Put the two GearOut2s in the last two holes in the case.
  9. Put the HolderPlate into the slot in front of the GearIn and bend it to snap into the slot above it making sure the floating gear peg goes into the hole.
  10. Take the holderArm and hook one side into the HolderPlate, wrap it around the output gears making sure the pegs hold the gears in place and hook it into the case, pushing the drive gear in slightly and locking it in the case.
  11. Glue the key in the hexagonal hole in the GearIn1 gear (not shown in exploded illustration).

Wind up the engine to compress the springs. Then let it go. The output gears should not move when winding and when released they should each move at gradating rates.

As of this time the actual output speeds and whether they can be slowed down is unknown. Also I suspect that the spring will break frequently so I made easy access to replacing them. Kind of like batteries.

If this works it can be used to (briefly?) power an action.

All Apps

Auto-magically prepare your 3D models for 3D printing. A cloud based 3D models Preparing and Healing solution for 3D Printing, MakePrintable provides features for model repairing, wall thickness...

App Info Launch App

Kiri:Moto is an integrated cloud-based slicer and tool-path generator for 3D Printing, CAM / CNC and Laser cutting. *** 3D printing mode provides model slicing and GCode output using built-in...

App Info Launch App
KiriMoto Thing App

With 3D Slash, you can edit 3d models like a stonecutter. A unique interface: as fun as a building game! The perfect tool for non-designers and children to create in 3D.

App Info Launch App

Print through a distributed network of 3D printing enthusiasts from across the US, at a fraction of the cost of the competitors. We want to change the world for the better through technology, an...

App Info Launch App

Quickly Scale, Mirror or Cut your 3D Models

App Info Launch App

3D Print a wide range of designs with Treatstock. Easy to use tools to get the perfect result. The global 3D printing network that connects you with high-quality and fast working print services nea...

App Info Launch App

i am working of making an energy storage device that can be made by printed parts.. I am leaning more towards a spring coil. there are a couple on thingivers. And what i was thinking is if i wanted to extend the starage capacity.. i can stack them on on top of the other and increase storage by 100 percent with each additional battery coil spring. What i am trying to sort out is a way to regulate the output of the energy.. for example.. i wan tto attach to a smal toy vehicle but instead of having it unwind as quick as it can.. put a kind of braking system in or resister that does not suck up energy.. maybe like a clock pendulum gearing system..?

examples :

BTW, there are at least 2 clocks type machines that can store energy.. through gravity pedulum system.

3D Printed Watch Mainspring for Smaller Print Beds (UNTESTED)
by Jake
Wind-up Toy
by cfleis1
Coil Spring
3D printed mechanical Clock with Anchor Escapement
Simple Graham escapement
3D-printed Watch with Tourbillon

have you tried or considered making the spring with nylon?

Lemme know how it goes.

I will try next weekend if not this one. I've havent attempted to build the model yet so it wont just be printing the springs. I'll post a video when I do :)

I tried it and it worked most of the time but the floater gear was the problem because it doesnt engage the other gears most of the times I tried it. You asked for ways to make it work and I messed around with it for a long time and I made it work.

That's cool. I agree that the floater gear didn't exactly work as advertised. I'l admit I don't really know what I'm doing with this stuff most of the time. Upload a remix so I can try it out.

i had an idea i found that if you made the second
hole on the left side of the gear in the top right corner over to the right more you will be able to fit another big gear with the wider little gear on it will fit together and it will all connect together.

When the plate piece was done it started warping because it was done and the others were still building that was the only problem I had.

Well, until you started putting it together. Sorry, I should update the description, this doesnt' work.

no i meant when it was still in the printer it was don and it was warping

Yes. What I'm saying is that curling is only the start of your problems, wait until you try actually using it.

I mean, best of luck getting it to work and if you make any modification please post them. I'd love to take the printed music box and make it wind (as in that little crank, not the movement of air) powered.

saw your youtube video and you said it has too much friction. use graphite. very similar to your engine is the 3d printed gun magazine on defcad website where all the censored / deleted by commieverse gun files have gone to live. anyways, they had jams with the gun magazines until they used graphite lubricant. use graphite and the gears should turn with little friction. good luck!

Struggling with instruction 2 - cut the spring at the obtuse angles - I can't see any obtuse angles.
I like the idea of the curves complimenting each other 'Oh, you are a lovely curve'.

If you print the spring as described all you get is the outside edge of the shape, 4 shells wide. There are 4 corners, 2 acute, 2 obtuse. Cut the obtuse angles. Hope that helps.

There's a new version of this coming up soon. Just need to put all the new gears and what not on a plate. Used blender's gear tool this time.

This is one smart idea! I imagine for PLA that is a bit more rigid or else you go to a bit thinner, or else you go to a bit thicker (so it won't brake). I'll give it a try tomorrow.

V1 printed and there are some tolerances off. Back to the drawing board.

looks amazing! Im confused as to how it is possible to print the  big box as it has 90degree overhangs on the top of the large hole. Will that because this is a work in progress?

You can take a look at my chair thing: http://www.thingiverse.com/image:60210http://www.thingiverse.com/ima...

It hangs a little down. Depending on your settings and the plastics you use, it can be a flat bridge.
For PLA you just need to warm the piece up to 60-80 °C and then you can bend it very easily.

90 degree overhangs shouldn't be a problem if you're bridge settings are set right. Full disclosure, mine aren't. I had to do some cutting. V2 may have a slightly different shaped hole for that reason.