pneumatic engine

this is my first project with the pneumatics. it is a compressed air engine using the double acting cylinders. it has a power pulse every 90 degrees of revolution just like a V8. but for all you eco-friendly people it doesnt put out any harmful emissions.


let me know what you think…

thats pretty sweet! if only pnumatics were legal.

please hold… yeap i think i wet my self …

dude that totally rocks not only did you do the hardware but you also programed it to run thats sweet good job

Just like a steam locomotive! Nice! I just wish I could order some :frowning:

Am I correct in assuming that you engine has massive amounts of tourqe?
Also do you have any practical usage for it yet?

Reminds me of when I built this kind of stuff with legos. I can only imagine how difficult it would be to make it work with vex, good job!

yea its got a good amount of torque. for its size its more than a combustion engine because it has peak cylinder pressure through the entire stroke while a combustion engine only has peak pressure for a short time about 20 degrees after top dead center.

i dont have a good use yet. the problem is that it needs to stay attached to the air compressor to have a large enough air supply. it has about a 5 or 6 foot radius if it has to move and it has to drag around the air hose. if anybody has any ideas for a stationary bot or machine please let me know so i can improve on this



that is amazing! i have tried to make one out of legos, but that never worked since i didnt have a good constant air source. it sounded like you had a compressor running, what kind did you use?

i looks and sounds sweet
i wounder because you have some much torgue if you could build a stationary ball thrower. the ones if have built using the vex motors don’t shoot ping pong balls more than 10 feet. but i think with pnumatics you should have alot more power so you could shoot further

its a small shop force 2 gal. air compressor. how are people building the ping pong ball launchers? if someone can tell me or show me how they are doing it with the electric motors i’ll try and build it the same for comparison purposes.


OK. It looks absolutely amazing. However, is it actually effective? Do the pistons keep in sync well enough? etc. etc. On that note I would like to say you are a genius whether they are actually practical or not. That is still amazing. I have the pneumatics kit too and may have to try that.

Here is the link for the picture of it:

can u plz promise to show the people of a video of ur results when ur done:)
good luck;)

Hey, are cylinders fast enough to launch something???

also, do they loose air?

yea they keep in sync fine. they are mechanically synced and they are triggered to switch directions with the limit switches. as far as effective goes… on a stationary machine it is awesome because it can be connected to a constant air supply. on a moving vehicle or robot it tends to have a limited range…more on that in the future. the disadvantages of the engine are that it is always a constant speed.

moving to a different point. the ping pong ball launcher is being put on hold for a while…the design that vex labs has is good but the distance is dependent on the strength of the spring not on whether it is an electric or pneumatic power system. i have a new idea of how to do that bot. while i have this engine built i am going to do something to try and show off its strength and speed. there might be a couple other pneumatic bots in the near future so keep your eyes open.


Ever try running your cylinders on a 20oz Paint ball CO2 tank? all you need is a regulator. its not cheap, but if you want the robot to be free-roaming then thats probably the best way to go. You could also just stick the compressor on the robot with a big battery… one of the battery ones used in the big FIRST robots. Still, thats Freaking sweet! i wish i had enough money to buy pneumatics…

Why are pneumatics illegal? they dont put out harmful emissions and they are just used for more speed and torque, right? so why make them illegal?:confused:

you can ask info@vexlabs by e-mailing them!

Put some wheels on that puppy.!
That thing should go way fast.

The thing is, he cant put wheels on it.
If he did, it would only go about 5 feet because it has to be constantly hooked up to an air supply, unless of course he does go and buys a 9oz or 20oz CO2 bottle, because the system uses more air then the tank can hold.