I designed this to hold a small LED flashlight, however, additional holder heads could be made for other tools. The flex links may be attached to various sides of the clamp. The tension of the links may be increased using a screw within each link. More tension is required when attaching heavier tools.
After printing the flex link, the captive ball and supports must be cleaned such that the ball is loose and free to move around within the head. I used a 90° hand countersink to open, clean, and taper the interior link receiver. Also I used a #6-32 tap on the interior screw hole.
I designed this flexible clamp for the temporary holding of a small LED flashlight, the kind found at Harbor Freight. It is made using ABS and has a removable head which may be changed to accommodate other items such as a magnifier glass. The bottom link may be attached to various sides of the clamp to provide the appropriate angle for the task at hand. Individual links may be also adjusted for tension via a #6-32 screw. I found that this method of "tensioning" was needed in order to hold the flex-links in place when holding heavier devices. The base link is made up from a standard link with a base button glued to it. Although one may use any number of links, six total, seemed about right for most jobs.
The clamp and clamp screw were built with 30% fill and all other parts were built with 100%. After printing the links, I used a 90° hand countersink to open, clean, and taper the interior link receiver. The receiver opening must be large enough to accommodate the head of the next link without breaking it and also small enough to prevent the head from popping out. I used a #6-32 tap on the interior hole to provide for a #6-32 x ½" round head screw. This screw is used to adjust tension on the link joint by pressing on the captive ball in the link. To assemble the links, press one link into the receiver of the next link before inserting the screw, then insert screw and tighten to desired link tension.
I used the Simplify3D slicing program to provide custom supports of the captive ball in the link. After printing, the supports and ball must be cleaned such that the ball is loose and free to move around within the head. I also found that printing the links singly made a better link than printing them in multiples.