Made: spray paint handle trigger

Part/Model:Spray can handle/trigger
Designer:Larry Milam aka Filament Corner
Printer:Tevo Tarantula
Slicer:Simplify3D 4.1
Layer Height:0.2
Infill:20% (Hexagonal)
Extruder Temp:240°C
Notes:Blue tape for bed adhesion;
Link:PETG Filament 1.75mm
Print Time (approx):Test Clip- 50 mins; Handle- 5.5 hr
Material Used:150g (approx.)
Final Thoughts:Printed well;
Designed for easy printing requiring no supports;
Moving part is printed in place which is nice;
PETG is prefect for this part and its required application
Design Score:8/10
Print Score:7/10
Final Mark:8/10

Been doing a lot of painting of late, specifically painting using a spray can as I do not have proper spray painting tools to do it like a professional or competent painter would. So because I can be lazy and not chasing perfection in this instance, spray paint did the job well enough for what I needed. All the painting for this particular project, a project I have been working on since the beginning of the year, was done using paint from an aerosol can. There was a heap of painting to do, all of which done with spray cans and I do mean ALL of it. One thing I did not take into account when I set out on my fumey adventure, was how brutal the little spray button cap can be on the tip of an index finger, especially after the 9th or 10th can of paint.

Knowing I still had more cans of paint to go through with the project, and thinking of my poor, savaged finger, I went in search of a solution. I found car parts shops (you know the ones I’m taking about) sell a handle and trigger set-up for use with spray cans. They have good reviews and would do the trick just fine, only problem is they cost money. Not much money but that’s not the point. My inner tight-arse and procrastinating self was confident enough that someone out there on the interwebs had already come up with a solution that could be downloaded and printed. Sure enough, after literally minutes of searching, the solution presented itself online at one of the usual places from finding useful bits and peices of this nature, MyMiniFactory. The handle/trigger online is essentially the same thing being sold in those usual auto parts stores, only this is something I could make myself my printer, costing me next to zilch. 

Filament Corner (Larry Milam) is the designer behind this nice little handle and trigger setup. In the downloaded zip files there is a V1 and V2 variant of the trigger handle with the only real difference between the two designs being that V1 has a curved handle where as V2 is more squared off. I chose to print the V2 handle as it didn’t require supports and could print in less time and use less filament. Ultimately the tool is more about being functional rather than something beautiful, not having a curvy handle isn’t the end of the world.

Spray can handle/trigger completed on print bed of Tevo Tarantula, 3D printed in PETG
Spray can handle/trigger completed on print bed of Tevo Tarantula

Surprisingly, this is the first print in place model I’ve printed ever. I was worried that it would turn out to be a total failure, due to the inaccurate nature of the printer doing the printing, but luckily for me it turned out fine and functions perfectly. There is only a single moving part, that being the trigger which moves inside the handle itself and inturn acts upon the spray can cap nozzle. The design is tried and tested and is exactly the same basic design concept as those store bought ones available at the auto parts store.

A great, and thoughtful, addition is the inclusion of a ‘test clip’. This STL is one of the files that comes with the zip, downloaded from MyMiniFactory. The idea being that this little clip is printed first, to check that the handle will actually fit on the spray can, it saves printing time and potential wasted filament. If the can doesn’t fit the clip, don’t bother printing the handle…

Handle/trigger mounted on the spray paint can, 3D printed in PETG
Handle/trigger mounted on the spray paint can

PETG was the choice of material for this hand held tool, and it is perfectly suited for the application. PETG is more durable than PLA and less susceptible to damage due to chemical exposure. As this is being used for spray painting and other nasty chemicals in aerosol cans (etch primers, adhesives etc), I wanted to make sure that it would survive and wouldn’t melt if, for whatever reason, it should have some overspray go on the handle itself. Prior to this print, I had only limited printing experience with this material with the results being lack-lustre to say the least. The prior sub-par prints were all on the CR-10, which normally prints PLA all day every day perfectly fine, however it wasn’t winning when it came to PETG. I put this to print on the Tevo for this reason and to see if it could produce better results over that of the creality. Happily, it was a big improvement! The Tarantula handled the PETG as easily as PLA and the quality of the print was just as good. It only needed one attempt at printing the part, printing on the first go. As this was an overnight print I was semi-expecting to wake up in the morning and find a spaghetti mess but to my surprise there was a completed part ready for use on an unsuspecting can of spray paint. Its obvious the Tarantula doesn’t have a hissy-fit, as the  CR-10 will, when presented with a material other than what it normally would print.

The more I print on the Tarantula the more it grows on me. It keeps producing the goods and doesn’t kick up a stink at these ‘unusual’ prints that I, on occasions, will do. I take back most of the harsh criticism I had towards it in the post I made when I first purchased the machine. Now encouraged by the results of the PETG don’t be surprised if I start using it in more regular applications.    

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