pic: 2175 Wheel

This is one of the wheels we’ll be using on our robot this year. It’s so pretty!

That 3D printed?

Not sure, looks fairly smooth/can’t see any layers, but that might just be the picture.

It IS 3D printed!

ABS-M30, to be exact. If you zoom waaay in you can kinda see the layers.

That’s pretty sweet. Do you guys have the printer in-house? If so, which make/model is it?

we have a printer in shop but these were made on a statasys printer by a sponsor, with a stronger material and larger build space then our in house printer. If we made them in house we’d have to make them one at a time instead of our sponsor making them four at a time.

We do have an ABS printer in house that we use for lots of different parts, but the material it uses isn’t as strong and the grain isn’t as fine (not sure about the exact details). This was done by a friend at Stratasys.

Edit: beaten to the punch. Also, I should give a shout out to 207, where we got the inspiration for this. We wanted a one piece, no hardware, direct driven wheel, but all our options were very expensive or required a lot of machining time … this has so far turned out to be a perfect alternative.

i highly recommend testing them and abusing them before competition. We have 4 stratus machines and 2 fortus machines at work and we only use them for prototyping purposes… Im a bit skeptical that those will hold up. my $0.02

We’ve built mecanum wheels on a SLS-type printer (not sure about the brand, sorry), then abused them. AFAIK, all the wheels (we built 5, not counting 8 VEX-scale ones) survived everything we could throw at them.

Depending what your work does, I can understand the prototyping. It can be quicker than machining or casting, but for the long runs of parts you’d want to look a lot harder at other methods to see if they’d work. For small batches or a quick turnaround, though…

These wheels were printed by one of our sponsors, using much stronger material than we have here in the shop.

One of the other members has just informed me that the wheel hub held at 45 foot-pounds of torque, and failed at 60 foot-pounds, in our rather unscientific torque-wrench tests.

Our strategy this year does not involve 30-point climbs, so we are not as concerned about our wheels surviving a long drop.

I’m glad to see others picking up 3D printed wheels as well. I’ve put these pictures in other threads before, but I’ll put them here again.

Here’s a picture of our 2011 and 2012 wheels side by side.

This is a fairly good example of what we expect our wheels to endure.

We’ve driven those same sets of wheels quite a few times on concrete/hard floors since, without any damage as of yet.

And to the OP; your wheels look fantastic, and I’m sure they’ll work great. If you choose to continue using 3D printed wheels, I’d change some of those sharp corners to radii, it’ll strengthen them a bit.

I personally hope we end up on the same field together at some point :slight_smile:

Also, here’s a sneak peek of what we’ve got for 2013.