Securing Aluminum Tube on a Hex Shaft

I planned to buy some versarollers hubs to attatch a versaroller tube to a 1/2" hex shaft, but they are out of stock everywhere.

Is there another way I can secure aluminum tube to a hex shaft (without welding a hub to the tube)?

We’ve been using 3D printed hubs that are functionally equivalent to the Versaroller hubs.


Do you have any ability to 3D print? That could help as you could print a similar part. If you have a lathe and a broach it is not hard to make a version of your own either.

The inside diameter of the versaroller tube is about 1.125 - things designed to press fit or slip fit into that bore could be modified. This includes things like VersaHubs. If the press fit isn’t tight enough they may need something like green Loctite to get a tight fit, but there’s options to explore here.

We 3D printed something similar to these hubs last year that never gave us a problem. Add hole to bolt the tube to it and you’re good to go.

We’ve been using 3D printed hubs

Do you have any ability to 3D print

We 3D printed

I can 3D print, but the roller will be a drum for a robowrangler mechanism and I fear that the torque from pulling another robot might damage the hubs.

How much torque have you guys used your custom hubs with?

Do you have access to a lathe and a hex broach? The same parts are pretty trivial to make on any late with some time.

Unfortunately we don’t :frowning:

What’s the inside diameter of your drum? Other hex hubs exist which match a 1.125" ID

It’s not cheap or easy, but maybe you could hex broach into this stuff:

And then drill and tap a screw into the side?

If you have any Plastic VersaHubs (217-4009) we found out that if you cut the “wings” off of them, the round portion is exactly the correct size to fit snugly inside VersaRoller Tube (though I still recommend drilling and tapping them to prevent slipping)


Ooh, winner winner right there. Both the plastic and aluminum versahubs have 1.126" bosses. Cut the rim off and it should fit into a versaroller.


The only downside to the aluminum versions is that the round portion of the hub tends to be a bit oversized from the specs which makes it harder to get on (might work fine for the polycarbonate VersaRollers though?).

Aluminum VersaHubs + 1.125" ID aluminum tube + tapped bolts into hub was what 148 used for the OG Robotwrangler in 2018.


Depending on your roller OD could you press a colson live hub into the tube?

You could install these Tube Connecting Nuts in the tube and then drill and tap the end of the hex shaft and thread the two together with a short length of threaded rod.

Space Coast Products offers a COTS solution. Simply push the end caps into the ends of the tube and secure with a 3/16 dowel pin or #10 screw.

While tube nuts are great, these are essentially guaranteed to untwist on one end of the tube or the other. The concentricity isn’t always sufficient either.

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