Pawl Problems

Hi! Something we’ve noticed over the course of the VEX year is our constant loss of the VEX part pawls. For the 2016-2017 game, Starstruck, many teams have started to make winches to make their robot able to hang. However, the loss of pawls makes it impossible for them to make a winch. Our school (Percy Julian Middle School) has tried to 3D print some pawls, but the parts are too small and complex for the printer. Our problem is that we don’t think it’s efficient to buy the whole winch kit when the only part that we really need are the pawls. We contacted the VEX manufacturers to see if there was any possible way that we could by just the pawls and not the whole kit, but there isn’t. Does anyone have a better solution to this problem than buying the whole kit?


I’d do some creative sawing and grinding on a bearing flat to make a new pawl. It doesn’t have to be identical to the original to do the job.

Isn’t 3D printing parts that isn’t cosmetic illegal?
I posted a forum for Official Q & A and I got a response saying they can only be used for cosmetics:

@1815 Delta II That wasn’t the question.

Sorry, my bad. I looked and it seems like the only way is to buy the kit. I even tried looking on EBay for one, but there isn’t a ratchet and pawl alone by itself;

Nope. Buying the entire kit is typically the only route.

Vex has recently offered products like high strength gears and sprockets individually. I don;t know how many high strength gear kits we bought to get 60 tooth HS gears or a sprocket of just the right size.

At least the winch kit is somewhat cheaper.

I would try to use a pillow block. Unless its super high torque, these will work fine (I ran a lift last year on this kind of ratchet).

True, but you are the one that mentioned the 3d printing to begin with so I think @1815 Delta II comment was understandable.

8059D made their own pawl for their nbn worlds’ robot.

Made from legal vex part, and I remember it looked really simple but effective.

My point is - it is possible to make use of the existing vex part to make a pawl. there is no need to have a specific vex part for this purpose.

Edit: think they have dismantled the robot. Couldn’t take any pic. But i remember it is simply a cut-up hinge

I’d recommend you to just improvise with legal vex parts like other people have suggested. You could use some drive shaft bar locks like we have. If you want it to have the same mounting position as a vex pawl, you could bend the bar lock 90 degrees and cut off the excess parts you don’t need. Just put the thing in a vise and hammer it ^^

Remind me, what the heck is a pawl? Is it the winch?

Here is a noteworthy improvised pawl:

However, it might not withstand the high torque loads required for this year.

I’m thinking hs sprockets + standoffs or pawls that are the hs 12 tooth gear with fixed rotation.