pic: How we deal with a part shortage.

This is the 39 tooth gates belt which sold out at Andymark. We needed a set for our practice bot so we 3d printed them :slight_smile:

Pretty cool idea. I’m super nervous about 3d printed parts in drive applications like this, but maybe you could share some of your specs?

What type of 3d printer?
Printed material?
Where’d you get the model?
Have you tested them out?
How do they hold up?

Just those to start! Looks rad!


I can get you more of the specs later. But we have tested them and they appear to work great. We made chain sprockets on a 3d printer last year, and they lasted relatively well (eventually broke on the drivetrain) add to the the fact that belt sprockets have a much larger surface to transmit the same torque and the fact that the belts in the kit are also plastic, we don’t expect any problems.

2826 is using a lot of printed drive components this year. All belt pulleys and a few selective gears have made the RP transisition.

For our drive:
Based on Brandon’s recommendation on C-C belt drives from talking to him at IRI last year:
-26T 15mm wide AT5 belt. 9% more torque capacity at the same tension than HTD or GT2

-SLS Nylon
-750 DPI
-We get these from the MSOE Rapid Prototype Center out of Milwaukee
-We have been using them all summer and on our competition bot through a lot of brutal defensive sessions
-We generated our model from Rushgears.com for gears and us.misumi-ec.com for belt pulleys. We used this so much in the past, we ended up spending a bit of time getting blanks for a bunch of gear sizes and profiles and adding them to our CAD library

Conclusion: Can’t be beat. If you can get an SLS sponsor, I highly recommend it.

Great way to get your drive to work! I wish we had a 3D printer like you, actually I wish I had all the resources you have.

There is one concern I have with 3D printing parts, that a company manufactures and sells. Since this company probably has patents on their belts/pulleys you may be getting into some legal issues with Gates.
I have two solutions:

  1. Gates sponsors FIRST, you can call them up or visit their website, and get parts for free (I believe). This is what we did last year for our prototype chassis, however they may not be free for every team as we are sponsored directly by Gates.
  2. You could call them or send an email to them explaining the situation you are in and get permission from them to 3D print their parts.

I may be completely wrong, and their may not be an issue with this at all, but it’s just a thing that came to mind when I saw this.

Good Luck this year 4334! You have a lot of people looking at ya this year :wink:

Thanks for the kind words. While these were made to be a replacement for the gates belt the model is not actually there. I got the tooth pattern from the SDP-SI CADs and made the rest. That might just mean we’re messing with someone else’s copyright but I’ll look into it.

You could also probably CNC it out of a block of alum. The 5 mm profiles for GT2/HTD is big enough to let you get a 3/32nd endmill in between the teeth. We machined all of our own pulleys and so far they have been working great in drive.

We ABS print plenty of our parts,but have always strayed away from using them in drive…this year our hopper belts are driven with ABS printed belts and they’re great. Last year we also used ABS pulleys for our belting…printing drive components is something I’d love to try out in the off season.

We have a large Dimension printer(not sure of the part number). I believe this makes a lot of our parts stronger than ones done on a Makerbot because of the smaller print head…

We are actually using a gear drive train this year. All of which (outside of the main gearbox) are 3D printed on my desktop printer. Haha has worked pretty great so far, save for the time someone accidentally ran an extension cord up into them.

Any guesses – how long before we see an entire robot of 3D printed parts? (excluding motors, wires, controllers, etc. of course)

Why would we exclude them? :yikes:

In response to where to get CAD files for a lot of the standard drive components, PTC has 3D models of the entire KOP, including things that you would actually want to print i.e. pulleys etc. A lot of the components are things that AndyMark and other suppliers don’t provide the models for. The parts are in Creo format (.prt/.asm) but can easily be imported into whatever CAD format you like.

They can be found here: http://www.catalogds.com/db/service?d=first&c=browse

New interesting product from Andymark?

That is awesome.

3D printing and layer additive welding is the way of the future.



I want this.