New Products - June 2023 (Pneumatics Kits)

This one has been a long time coming.

I’m extremely excited to announce the VEX IQ Pneumatics Kit!

This kit contains the following parts, and has everything required to outfit a VEX IQ Robot with pneumatics:

  • (2) Pneumatic Control Units
  • (2) Air Tanks
  • (1) Pneumatic Pump
  • (8) Pneumatic Cylinders (4 small / 4 large)
  • (1) Roll of 4mm pneumatic tubing
  • (1) Case of pneumatic fittings

These kits are now available to pre-order on, and are expected to begin shipping to customers late this Summer.

And before anyone asks, yes, these WILL be VEX IQ Robotics Competition Legal! Be on the lookout for specific rules and regulations to be added in a future game manual update.

We look forward to seeing how classrooms and competition teams utilize this kit, and to seeing the amazing mechanisms that will be developed as a result of this addition!


You might have forgotten how light the IQ structures are - try imagining again now. You can flick the largest IQ structural component across the room with one finger. Ever tried that with an aluminium component? Picture years of development work by a substantial group of very smart people exploring the design space of dimensions and materials.


Not what I was expecting! It’s very nice it comes with a pump too!

Will there be VRC kits available anytime soon? I’ve been putting off purchasing for a while because I keep hearing that there will be pneumatics kits available. However, if these are the kits then I’ll just part them out.

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Woah, this is very interesting. The product page is pretty spare on details though.

  • What are the capabilities of the “Pneumatic Control Units”? Do they have multiple independent solenoids inside them?

  • How heavy are the tanks

  • How fast is the pump?

  • How is the pump run? From the images it looks like it uses a 3 wire plug, but I’m not sure if the IQ brain has 3 wire ports?

  • The cylinders are vaguely labeled as “small” and “large”. What are the bore sizes of each? What are the stroke lengths?

  • Will any of these components be available individually? Thinking additional solenoids for more versatile control, or even multiple pumps.


The pump is connected to the pneumatic control unit, it can be enabled/disabled from user code, normally when a program starts that uses the Pneumatic class, the pump will be enabled.


Stay Tuned.

More info is on the way for this. For now, I’ll try and answer your questions as best as possible. I’m sure @N0ah can jump in and provide more info, too. He has spent a lot of time working on the development of this. In fact, this project started as a bit of a side-project for the both of us when we were still interns here.

Each Pneumatic Control Unit is equivalent to what would be considered 2 Double-Acting Solenoids. Each half of the unit is controlled independently. The Pneumatic Control unit also controls the Pump. 3 Wire Cable goes from pump to Control Unit. James already touched on this above a bit, too.

Tanks are pretty light. Thin wall aluminum, so not much to them. I don’t have a specific weight available right now. Maybe something Noah can touch on.

See Above.

Bore is appx 10mm, strokes are 2x Pitch and 4x Pitch.


< Checks Bingo Card for VIQRC Pneumatics >



Dumb And Dumber Lloyd GIF - Dumb And Dumber Lloyd Theres A Chance GIFs


Me when no scavenger hunt thread: :sob:


It had to be the year I leave IQ


So you are saying, vex iq allows you to run the pump during comp? Unlimited pressure!


Updated kits or in stock kits?


@bkahl @jpearman Gen 1 and 2 brain compatible? Nothing listed on the website, but assume this is an update to Gen 1 brains if it’s compatible there?

The connector on the unit doesn’t look like the standard RJ connectors. more like 3 wire legacy connectors for v5??

The tanks are about 25g, The pump is about 90g.

This is a tough one to answer as the pressure buildup is non-linear and varies based on storage capacity, let me try and answer that without going off into the weeds with math.

Off in the weeds

At lower pressures it keeps up with usage no problem. I can’ t get the pressure to drop below 10PSI with running a 4x pitch cylinder as fast as it would extend and retract. That still gives you just over a pound of pushing force. If you give the pump some time between actuations you will get more force.

Adding more tanks makes it fill slower, but it also drops pressure less when something is used.
Using no tanks at all will cause pressure to build the fastest, but you will loose almost all pressure during the actuation. for example, a claw will drop an object if an arm is actuated elsewhere.

Keep in mind these cylinders are on-pitch and have 2 snap holes on each side, so you can stack them side by side to get more output force with lower pressure, letting the pump run at it’s higher flowrate rather than waiting for it to build up to a higher pressure with a lower flowrate.

The pump is there so most teams won’t have to worry about air usage during a match. unless you are actuating everything several times with no time between actuations, you can rely on about a pound of force from each cylinder assuming you start with full tanks.

TL;DR : The pump is about fast enough.


Fully compatible with IQ generation 2

Partially compatible with IQ generation 1, that is, it will be supported by VEXcode and you will have full control from a user program, however, it will not show in the devices screen (as we are not updating vexos) and any future firmware updates would need a gen 2 brain to install.


When is the update to the manual gonna come out for the Pneumatics?

Dillon already answered this


Motorless drivetrain???