Introduction: University of Cincinnati CCM Pneumatic Projects Fall 2015 (Can Crusher)

Picture of University of Cincinnati CCM Pneumatic Projects Fall 2015 (Can Crusher)

This is my Final Project for "Pneumatics for the Theater" class, Fall 2015. I am a Lighting Design and Technology student at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. My name is Brendan Watts, I will graduated with my BFA in Lighting Design and Technology in 2016.

This is a step by step instructable on how to build a pneumatic can crusher.

Step 1: Gather Materials

1/4" Plate steel

  • 3" x 3-1/2"
  • 2x 3" x 8-1/4"
  • 3" x 3"
  • 3-1/2" x 5-3/4"
  • 2-1/2" Diameter circle

3" x 3" Pneumatic Cylinder

5/3 Valve

Step 2: Drill Hole

Drill 1-1/2" Hole in 3"x3" Plate steel on center.

Step 3: Weld

Picture of Weld

Weld the 2 3" x 8-1/4" To the side of the 3"x3" plate.

Step 4: Continue Welding

Picture of Continue Welding

Weld the 3" x 3-1/2" plate steel to the end of the can crusher

Weld the 3-1/2" x 5-3/4" Plate to the bottom. Make sure its butted up to the Plate with hole drilled in it.

Weld 3/4" Nut to center of 2-1/2" Circle (This is your crusher that threads on to the end of Pneumatic Ram)

Step 5: Install Pneumatic Cylinder

Picture of Install Pneumatic Cylinder

Insert Pneumatic cylinder collar through The Pre-Drilled hole. Install Nut to hold Cylinder in Place.

Step 6: Paint

Picture of Paint

Dissassmble And Paint

Reassemble once dry

Step 7: Plumb

Picture of Plumb

Plumb the Air Lines, Along with the 5/3 Valve

Step 8: Crush Some Cans


Buck4One made it! (author)2017-03-22

Great little project. I was looking for something to crush the 10+ bags of can I've been keeping in my garage. It was also my first try at using a new welder, so you'll have to forgive me on the "bubble gum" welds. It works perfectly. I still need to clean it up and mount it on something. Thanks.

Danny abad (author)Buck4One2017-04-22

Hola estimado, puedes ayudarme en regalarme un diagrama de conexiones del proyecto? saludos, muchas gracias

Buck4One (author)Buck4One2017-03-22

I forgot to note that I left the forward "crushing" exhaust open for quick action. I put a restrictor on the return exhaust to slow it down. It keeps the thing from hammering and lowers the noise a little.

BeachsideHank (author)2015-12-11

This one looks like it's more fun:

MarkF30 (author)BeachsideHank2015-12-14

Now what if that mechanical crusher was hooked up to an exercise bike, so the faster you pedalled the faster the cans were crushed.

dough51342000 (author)2015-12-11

I made one. Would like to see your video but it don't work. Your valve is that exhaust out. I was trying to make the air self contained so you don't have to keep the compressor. Would like your input.

BrendanW7 (author)dough513420002015-12-13

I believe if you wanted it to be self contained you would want to exhaust to the opposite side of the cylinder. And you would want to use a different valve with only 2 stages. This would allow it to be always in one or the other direction. The only problem I see with being self contained. Is how would you charge the system initially with out an airline from compressor. Maybe you use a really small tank. Another issue I see with self contained. Is air leaks over time.

Hope that helps.

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