3D Printed Air Vents for a Waiex

Discussion in 'Workshop Tips and Secrets / Tools' started by FritzW, May 12, 2019.

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  1. May 12, 2019 #1

    FritzW

    FritzW

    FritzW

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    Our chapter Waiex has two 3d printed NACA ducts that do a fine job of keeping the back of the pilots knees cool but not much more than that. We need a way to get the air up to the pilots face where it'll do some good.

    We're about out of panel space for eyeball vents so I'm thinking about mounting something like this on top of the glare shield just forward of the panel.

    Waiex Vent 1 1.png
    I'd need to punch two 1.25" holes in the glare shield (no problem with a panel punch). It should take 4 or 5 hours to print. ...maybe 6 or 7


    Waiex Vent 1 2.png
    Two 4-40 screws ride in slots to keep the air vents from blowing out.

    Waiex Vent 1 3.png
    The chrome mud flap girl is an inside joke for a guy who's worried that I'll actually put a chrome mud flap girl on the vent :eek:
     
  2. May 12, 2019 #2

    Vigilant1

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    Looks interesting.
    My Sonex has two little Van's flip-open paddle vents on the sides of the fuselage. They work great (grabbing that slipstream air from the prop), weigh very little, and don't take up any panel space.
     
  3. May 12, 2019 #3

    FritzW

    FritzW

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    We're getting plenty of air into the cockpit, we're just not getting it past the pilots knees ;/
     
  4. May 12, 2019 #4

    cluttonfred

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    Neat, Fritz, though I wonder if you are getting carried away with the CAD and 3D printing vs. simpler solutions. I would think that a low-profile folded aluminum box with a handful of rivets and a row of holes in the front would work fine.
     
  5. May 12, 2019 #5

    radfordc

    radfordc

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    You're probably right, but missed an important point. When you have a hammer, every problem looks like a nail....when you have a 3d printer....well, you get it right?
     
  6. May 12, 2019 #6

    Hephaestus

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    Depends how you look at it... Drawing it out is done either way. For some CAD is easier.

    But exporting it to an stl, and printing it - that's the end of the construction basically. 12-20 hours later you come back and the parts are waiting for you.

    Versus what 2-3 evenings or a Saturday later you're done the sheet metal version?

    Fritz might want to consider a simple flap style control to allow/restrict airflow to the sections. My .02.
     
  7. May 12, 2019 #7

    FritzW

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    Are you sure your not just being a Luddite (lol) It only took 2 or 3 hours to draw (including the mud flap girl) and if I had started the print last night I would have a finished vent this morning. +/- 12 hours from initial idea to finished item (and 8 of those hours are spent sleeping) ...that's hard to beat

    How would you connect the SCAT hoses to the aluminum box? (the tight bend in the elbows is required) How would you shut the air off on a cold day? I can't think of a simpler way to make a comparable air vent (very low profile with two independently controlled vents). ...and it has to fit the aesthetics of the Waiex.

    One man's PITA is another man's "simple" ;)
     
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  8. May 12, 2019 #8

    FritzW

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    The original sketch had a 3 detent flap (full air, some air, no air). I went with the Cessna'ish tube valves in hopes that the air could be directed a little. ie. still have full air flow but not necessarily right in your face. If these simple ones don't do the trick I'll print some with vanes in them.
     
  9. May 12, 2019 #9

    Hephaestus

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    I was thinking more about a door/flap to restrict flow like your car likely uses... That way you can have lots in your face or none, just a way to set it to flow as you like.
     
  10. May 12, 2019 #10

    Woodenwings

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    Not sure what 3d printer you have or will use. pardon me if you have lots of experience with them...if not...there are lots of design considerations to make when designing for printing. I have a fair bit of experience...enough to use it sparingly. UV is also a problem. the parts should be protected....and heat is a problem. thermoplastic tends to get all thermal in the heat!

    My own 3d printing hobby website:
    stlhive.com
     
  11. May 12, 2019 #11

    Hephaestus

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    Woodenwings - asa or petg. ;)
     
  12. May 12, 2019 #12

    FritzW

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    CF-Nylon6 for guns, ABS for jigs and air vents ;)

    20190512_132523_resized.png
     
  13. May 12, 2019 #13

    Woodenwings

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    I prefer PETG. Abs is ok but smells bad if hot. There are also some polyurethane maths that are rigid and very tough. A bit tough to print depending on the nozzle type. Cracking would be a problem. If replacement was easy you could be more bold. Warpage during printing may prove to be the toughest but to crack. Petg is better than abs for warpage.

    Best of luck.
    Shane
     
  14. May 12, 2019 #14

    gtae07

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    I'll second this. If I'm fabbing something up myself, beyond just a simple bracket, I have to CAD it up first, even if I'm just going to cut it from sheetmetal and rivet it. Otherwise it never turns out right. I have to have a drawing and work to the drawing.

    To me CAD is simpler than trying to draw it up by hand because I spent so long using it professionally--to the point I've even dreamed in CAD.


    Yes, there is a bit of "well I have this printer so I should use it" when you have one, but it also lets you do some pretty cool stuff that would just be time prohibitive trying to do in other materials. And as Fritz points out, the printer can work while I sleep.

    That's quotable right there...
     
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  15. May 12, 2019 #15

    Woodenwings

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    Cadd is 2d and 3d. Modeling is 3d.
    The english language is suffering with the use of cadding.

    I teach this stuff...so I let myself get bothered to some extent!

    Blah blah!
     
  16. May 13, 2019 #16

    radfordc

    radfordc

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    That may be the typo of the week!
     
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  17. May 13, 2019 #17

    radfordc

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    I printed this one from ABS. I did install a steel barrel sleeve. songbird.jpg
     
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  18. May 13, 2019 #18

    Woodenwings

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    ha! effing phones!
     
  19. May 13, 2019 #19

    ScaleBirdsScott

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    Another thing to note: 3D printing services for more fancy parts and materials (with finishes and properties the home machines can't really touch) is getting cheaper by the hour it seems. For a few trim pieces that are going to be visually up close and personal, seen by others, and also might indeed get a wee bit warm from time to time, Fused Nylon printing is a great option. And you can't do that at home (unless you're looking to trade in your T6.)

    And while forming something from sheet metal is definitely the classic homebrew airplane way, there's a lot of cases where a little printed part here and there can turn a tin lunchbox into something a little more visually appealing.

    I'm using it for cockpit machine-guns, for example:

    LiteFifty_Tailcaps.jpg

    Note that while the main box is aluminum, each of those end pieces, despite looking like a complete assembly are one piece. I diddn't dress these up at all, these are untouched by me, just slide them right into my formed box shell. The shop that prints them uses a media blast and vacuum process to remove unbonded powder from the part, and then they dye the nylon black. That's it.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
  20. May 13, 2019 #20

    radfordc

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    Another 3D printed machine gun for my Eindecker. This is a 75% scale version. IMG_1810.JPG
     
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