Sharing My 3D Printed Grip With PTT Switch Design

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jandetlefsen

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My main objective was to design a simple ergonomic grip that is suitable for 3D printing and is designed around a high quality PTT switch (1). The switch is friction locked and should be able to be pulled out with moderate force. Seems to make most sense to me. In a second iteration i also want to include a trim switch but that adds quite a bit of complexity shape wise in the 3D printing design space so will do that later. Probably have to divide the design in two halves for that. This is more of a minimum viable product.

Secondary objective was to teach myself Solidworks surfacing. I've so far avoided the surfacing section but this has really helped me get past that. I've tried to make the grip as customizable as possible, you can change pretty much any parameter down to the curvature and the size of the finger recesses, overall thickness in two dimensions, height, etc if you open it in Solidworks. If anyone want to port this into other CAD programs feel free to do so. I publish this under the WTFPL License, the "Do whatever the F you want public license".

Uploading all files, SW, 3MF, STL. The 3D printing files are rendered with a 27mm mount,

What do you think? Is that something you would use? I'm open to suggestions and improvements.


1) P1 Momentary Switches | Aircraft Spruce (using the pressfit version)

IMG_9606.jpg
 

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Riggerrob

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Beauty!
Thanks for sharing.
As long as you keep a steel tube up the middle, the 3D print material is a minor choice.
I would add a shelf on the bottom to rest my pinky ... like some military control sticks.
 

rv7charlie

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Looks really nice. This kind of thing is my motivation to get into CAD, if I can ever finish my RV7 project.

Your choice on the switch, but with 50+ years of electronics experience, I use sub-$5 switches for PTT. Logic is that no switch in an a/c gets anywhere near the number of cycles over its life as the switch would get in just about any other application (most a/c switches fail from disuse), and the PTT isn't a flight-critical item. Something else to consider is that a high current rated switch *may* be less reliable in a signal switching situation. Some contact materials made for higher current switching will corrode when used for signal switching, and the low voltage/low current used in signal switching may not be enough to push through the corrosion.

FWIW,

Charlie
 

jandetlefsen

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Your choice on the switch, but with 50+ years of electronics experience, I use sub-$5 switches for PTT.

Agree with you. From an engineering point of view it's unnecessary. This one just has a nice heavy click which i like, very subjective of course. Any button would fit but it would need to be press fit, mounted from the top.
 

jandetlefsen

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What filament are you using? PLA? ABS?

I'm mostly using PETG these days but there is minimal structural load on those grips so anything will do. Was thinking about spray painting it but the exposed layers give it some extra grip which is also nice. This is printed in 0.3 mm layer height "draft" mode.
 

jandetlefsen

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Updated. Now with handrest. Printing a sample now. Made the handrest at an angle but symmetrical in the top view for right or left hand flying. Angle, width and height of the handrest are parameters that can be adjusted.

Screen Shot 2022-01-21 at 12.40.05.png
 

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sonex293

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I agree. I've created a few 3D printed items for my build. I've used TinkerCAD and FreeCAD for part design. Anytime I find an aircraft part on Thingiverse I mark it as a favorite and download the files. I wish I had the space for a CNC router (i.e. Shopbot or equivalent).

This stick grip design is nice. My preference would be to have the PTT on the forefinger and possibly a trim toggle on the top for thumb activation.

==
Michael
 

jandetlefsen

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This stick grip design is nice. My preference would be to have the PTT on the forefinger and possibly a trim toggle on the top for thumb activation.

Thank you. I have a rocker switch here on my desk that i want to include. I'm thinking a lot how to place the buttons that it's still easy to print. I probably have to split the grip into two halves and work with screws to hold the halves together since the toggle switch isn't press fit like the PTT ( if anyone knows a nice rocker switch that is compact and press fit and costs under $20 let me know) I was thinking to place them both on the top side by side but PTT forward might make it easier space wise. That will give me some new ideas, thanks.

EDIT: Found a snap in rocker switch on Mouser, let's see.

Screen Shot 2022-01-25 at 10.22.04.png
 
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ScaleBirdsScott

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On WWII era grips they would install the switches thru a big hole where the trigger is, then pin the trigger in place to cover the hole. On my replica grip I'm trying to find microswitches that I can put into a 'cradle' that will insert up into that space in the head of the grip, vs using the old school method of big strips of copper that the buttons flex to contact. (Though part of me says why change it?)
 

dwalker

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I agree. I've created a few 3D printed items for my build. I've used TinkerCAD and FreeCAD for part design. Anytime I find an aircraft part on Thingiverse I mark it as a favorite and download the files. I wish I had the space for a CNC router (i.e. Shopbot or equivalent).

This stick grip design is nice. My preference would be to have the PTT on the forefinger and possibly a trim toggle on the top for thumb activation.

==
Michael

I do too, would be nice to have a file list of cool stuff others have found to save search time.
 

jandetlefsen

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FWIW, I prefer to have the transmit switch on top of the grip, as opposed to a trigger switch.

Will probably do a design with two switches (PTT and 1 axis trim) mounted on top side by side next since they are very easy to design and print in a single piece without supports. Second option would be a two pieces print similar to the grips used in the Sportsman from the defunct NZ composite company where Glasair said they only have a couple of them left and are looking for a new supplier. I might even get this as a single body design, have to try. I've ordered a panel mount rocker from Mouser, lets see how well this fits into a 3D printed design. The only rocker switches i've found that are specifically designed for press fit (imo the best way to make switches work in a 3D print) are from Otto and cost 60$ each with this source. On the other hand if you can print this grip for cents and have to spend $80 on switches it's still a cheap grip compared to other option and you get all the premium switches all of which aerospace grade, not that it's necessary.
 
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