Vex Low Cost Identical Legal Parts Compilation

Hello Forum Members,

I’ve been thinking lately that to help many vex teams financially, we can all compile all the 3rd party lower cost identical vex parts that are legal in the vex competition. I’m guessing it would save teams 20%-35% the money it would cost them to buy the same parts from vex. I would only say this for small parts and not the main parts such as metal and things, but things like zip ties, screws, washers and spacers (teams need a lot), pneumatic tubing and fittings, stronger and better tools, along with other parts. If you add it all up, it would make quite a difference. I request all forum members to reply with links and details of lower priced vex legal parts so we can all compile them all together for the benefit of all.

My contribution:

pneumatic tubing (credit to pjohn1959) which is $15 for 65 feet of tubing while vex charges $5 for 5 feet of tubing which is 5 times cheaper:

Please add as many contributions you can or know about.

Thank you

Please add as many contributions you can or know about.

Thank you

There’s an alternative parts source list for pneumatics on this page:

Just be sure that whatever it links to is actually a legal part. I suppose the links could change to something similar but not actually identical.

Correct. Everyone be sure it is identical and legal, and if you have any questions, please ask.

I’ve tried your link but it leads to many different screw types. I request you to edit it to have the exact link for a specific part so it would be easier to find. Thanks.

McMaster Carr does not allow links directly to products. The product is under the socket head cap screws. Specifically, Stainless Steel Button-Head Socket Cap Screws, with 8-32 thread size.

Read the screw rule and figure it out?

I’ve found that Fastenal is cheaper than McM-Carr for both parts and shipping. Since I work near a Fastenal I save the shipping part. You might want to check with them for the cap screws.

I once went to Fastenal. They gave us a 50% discount because it was school related. We bought 100 pack boxes of various screw sizes and the total still came to over $50 (with the 50% off!). It was absurd. The screws were nothing special…identical to VEX screws. I don’t know why it was so expensive, but I have never went back. I can get at least 5x the screws at McMaster Carr for the same price.

If I have the ambition I will try to find the invoice. The price per screw was astronomical. (regular screws…not fancy titanium or anything crazy) This was a couple years ago…perhaps things have changed.

Yes, thanks for the contribution, it will actually save teams 50%! Why doesn’t McMaster allow links, isn’t it good for them?

You can actually get the direct link by clicking on the product number and going to the “Product Detail” page. This will link you to "

For example, the page for 1/2" long 8-32 Button-Head Cap Screws is

Except you want the 18-8 stainless ones :stuck_out_tongue:

I didn’t know that JoseSantos, thank you. With this new knowledge I have compiled a list of 8-32 Screws from McMaster Carr categorized by length in order to reduce the time needed to find each length.

You can view the McMaster screw list here.

EDIT: You can also view the McMaster Carr nuts list here.

Here is standoff and coupler links from Mcmaster. I have purchased these and they are identical.

Eventually we can make a new page with all the sources on one page.

Yes, I was hoping we could all compile every single cheaper identical vex parts that is legal all together so everyone can use them happily. You think vex will be mad at us for doing this? :stuck_out_tongue:

Thanks, that will really help a lot! I have a question, for the 8-32 Thread, 2" Length, in the animated picture of the product, it shows it is 5/8 just round metal on the screw. What does this mean? Or is it just some thread? Here’s a picture:

It means it may be partially threaded. They use this as most applications that require a screw this long do not need the threads in that area.

I have ordered these from Mcmaster sometimes they come fully threaded sometimes not. Its a luck thing I guess.

The great part about the fully threaded ones is you can make any length custom screw you need with these handy tools. When you use these combination wire strippers it leaves the threads intact unlike other cutting methods. This one will cut both sizes of vex screws. They have other ones that cut more sizes also.

I have added this source about cutting screws to the wiki.

Are fully threaded screws not legal? Can you contact McMaster for information?

Yes any commercially available screw is legal… Please read the rule.

How about nylon spacers in just the sizes you actually want? :eek:

They are out now but have been in stock int he past.