Sophomore’s curiosity takes form with 3D printing project


ZJ Hoffmann

Sophomore Samuel Andrus shows off his design.

Sarah Quick, Staff Reporter

Burroughs sophomore Sam Andrus has always taken a liking to engineering-based projects. However, it wasn’t until the last few years that this simple interest developed into a full-scale hobby that allows him to explore and experiment within the realm of engineering. Andrus’ most recent project has been a 3D-printed motor that he designed himself piece by piece.

“It makes me so happy to build something all from scratch and see it come to life,” said Andrus.

Andrus already has a YouTube channel where he discusses his projects and the various design elements and processes he incorporates. The platform enables him to hear feedback from viewers and develop a direction for researching improvements to his designs and the beginning of new ones.

His first attempt to build a mini air engine took him about eight months to complete, but it was not quite perfect. Luckily, the engineering process must include testing and revising, and Andrus began working on version 2.0 after observation and research on the first model. The second attempt took less than half the time and was far more successful, much to the satisfaction of the aspiring engineer.

Andrus says that his favorite part of building the motor was when it all came together and he just couldn’t wait to see it work like he was hoping it would. After almost a year of research, planning, building, and rebuilding, the success is sweet.

“It is amazing being able to see these ten pieces working together to move and do something!” said Andrus.

His most recent motor project involves several parts that all interact in a complex sequence to achieve the desired function. Andrus explains that the motor works when a shaft, which is attached to a piston, moves and opens a valve releasing the compressed air which then moves the flywheel, resulting in a functioning motor.

Andrus designed all of these pieces and the device’s process by himself and constructed each part with his own 3D printer. Andrus was inspired to start 3D-printing after seeing some of his favorite YouTubers showing off their skill and designs and he couldn’t wait to try it himself. From there his curiosity helped him to explore the possibilities of 3D printing and eventually build his own YouTube channel.

Videos explaining his process and displaying the results of his hard work are on his channel Axel Dayton.