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Bubble bucket

by scratchhax Jul 25, 2015
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sorry about that, all of the source 123d files are now uploaded to thingiverse

Great idea, I'm going to remix to make a giant wand. The secret to a good bubble mix is guar gum. The other secret is fresh mixed. Here is a simplified recipe, but you can google others. I typically make a 1/2 batch.

1.5 Tbl guar gum
2 Tbl baking powder
20 oz Dawn Platinum dish soap
3 gallons hot water

My way of doing it is to mix the guar gum in the dish soap until blended. Then stir mixture in hot water being careful to not froth the mix. Last add the baking powder. Remix before each use because the guar gum tends to separate out.

BTW: This is the mix people use for doing BIG bubbles. I've tried other mixes, but this one by far out performs anything else!

Not to create a spoiler, but I won't be messing with any of your design. Instead I'm making an adapter that slides on a PVC pipe and snaps into the chain attachment of your wand. I'll post after I work out a few more details. Attached is the work in progress

that sounds intriguing. Some guys from L1 hackerspace made one using cutoff PVC for the wands and a giant box fan for air. can't wait to see what shenanigans you're up to!

excellent formula! Can't wait to see the remix!

Is there a way of making the wands printable on a print bed 120mm x 120mm?
I have a MP Select Mini and this would be fun to print out.

For sure, In your slicer, you can just split off one of the arms on the wand. If you alternate them, one on the left, one on the right, it should still produce a ton of bubbles AND fit on your machine. meshmixer is a free app that will let you edit the stl files if your slicer won't let you split a part.

I also wonder if I could use a belt made from flexible rubber or plastic with holes punched in it? I would then use two to three pulleys on each axel... this would eleminate a ton of printing.....
I made a belt for my vandegraff generator using plastic covered fabric shower curtain, it could easily be adapted to this :)

Those are all really great ideas. I've been considering giving this thing a makeover this spring but haven't had the time to do a version 2 yet. Doing it again I would use an all pvc body, the chains work out well and I would likely stick with that but I would put air distribution inside the pvc similar to how one of the builds modified it. I saw one build at a hackerspace that actually just used section of pvc for the bubble wands and upgraded to a bigger fan.

You could use a shorter bucket and in turn less links, this could net you the same amount of bubbles with less printing. They make a 2.5 gallon bucket thats the same diameter. Also thanks for make the PVC pipe adapter. I have an old cordless screwdriver to use to drive it, I will seal the motor with a ballon or heat shrink. Thanks for posting!

I'm having a really hard time trying to print the pins. Does anyone have any suggestion on how to get them to print successfully? I access to a Replicator 2x and I'm printing in ABS.

What trouble are you running into? Make sure you are printing them flat. Also if you have any 3mm filament available, you can just cut off lengths of that and use them for pins. Works pretty well to be honest.

What is the total price of the BOM for this thing?

If you use PVC instead of aluminum, it should be well under $20. Pretty much the only expense is the geared motor and a bucket. TBH though, you could replace the geared motor with a hand crank and it would be just as fun.

I want you to be my neighbor ;)

Hey guys, I'm nearly done printing all the linkages and wands, and have the gears and motor mount already complete. Question I have is about the pins. I can't get them to stay together in the current (Tall) orientation. They print out fine, but then break off at a layer when trying to use them (insert into linkage holes) fairly easily. Should I lay them down for directional strength? Any other tips? If not I can get some plastic dowel or something and cut if I know the desired dimension. Measures 3.5mm now off my printer.

You have a couple of options here. Laying them down will strengthen them a LOT and is what I do. I use S3d for slicing so reorienting is really easy, but I can upload a horizontal pin if you need one. The other option is to use lengths of 3mm filament, raw and unprinted, as the pin. The pins don't really do much lateral movement so they tend to stay in place even if you have wiggle room in the joint.
SO excited to hear you are printing one for yourself, hope you enjoy!

Good to hear. I have no 3mm filament so i will try laying some down! I can also do it easily with repitier host and slic3r. How about the linkages, in their flat orientation, the holes are out of round. Do you put them on their side?

The links I will run either way depending on how much space I have on my plate. If you print them vertical you'll likely need a bit of support for the span but your holes will be nice and round. Im not sure what layer height you are printing at but I find that the holes stay pretty nice at .3 and below but get a little weird at anything larger.

Great, thanks! I'm running .24 or so layer height , my printer is a fairly well tuned twoUp, but still probably isnt as good as some of the better units - this might be part of my issue for the holes. I may try some on the side this afternoon depending on how many I already have. Worst case I'll drill em.

Only last thing, is there any way a pic that shows your motor mounting and linkage system could get posted here? I think I have an idea of how it all hooks up but a picture would help tremendously. Like, i'm not sure what the slot in the drive gear is really for...

Thanks for all your help, i'll be sure to post "i made one" pics once it is complete!

I replaced those files and uploaded the shaft coupling picture. Let me know if you have any questions.

I was just thinking of posting that up. When I get home tonight I'll upload horizontal pins, vertical links and I'll take some picture of the motor linkage. I eventually just grabbed some 1/4 hollow aluminum stock from a local RC hobby parts place and press fit it onto the motor. The drive sprocket has a 1/4 hole in it that fits that shaft and I have a little bit of paperclip drilled through in a T to act as a key, but it doesnt really get used, friction is enough.

Also, would you share your favorite recipe for homemade bubble solution, as it appears you've used a fair amount in development?

sure. I use a glycerin based one that I found online. You can use sugar if you can't find glycerin (it's usually by the soap or skin care products) but the sugar based formulas mean you really need to make sure you wash things out afterwards or your bubbles will have parachuting ants.

1/2 (500 ml) cup dishwashing detergent
4-1/2 (4.5 liter) cup water
4 tablespoons (60 ml) glycerin (available in pharmacies or chemical supply houses)

Mix everything up, let it sit for 24 hours and it should be good to go. It will work immediately after mixing, but letting it sit seems to make the bubbles firmer

I'll have to give it a try. Thanks! This is a great project you've got here.