Lab Shakers for Agitation

3D printing with water soluble material is a great way to produce objects with complex geometry and overhangs. 3D printed PVA support material can take many hours to dissolve in water. An orbital shaker can help speed up the process and reduce clean up.

A Crickit Powered Lab Shaker


This DIY shaker uses an Adafruit Crickit, Circuit Playground Express and DC motor. The speed is adjustable with a potentiometer. MicroUSB port is accessible for programming. The unit is powered by a power supply for constant usage. With 3D printed parts, electronics and hardware, you can create a lab shaker agitator.

Parts & Components

The parts used in this project are linked below. The Circuit Playground Express and Crickit are sold separately. Additional Jumper wires are used to create modular connections between components.

1 x Right-Angled 2.1 Barrel Plug
10 x DC Power Right Angle Barrel Male Jack Plug with Wire 5.5 x 2.1mm
1 x Panel Mount 10K Potentiometer w/ On-Off Switch
Panel Mount 10K Log Potentiometer w/ On-Off Switch - 10K Log w/ Switch
Top down view of a Adafruit CRICKIT for Circuit Playground Express with a circular board connected.
Sometimes we wonder if robotics engineers ever watch movies. If they did, they'd know that making robots into servants always ends up in a robot rebellion. Why even go down that...
A Black woman's manicured hand holds a round microcontroller with lit up LEDs.
Circuit Playground Express is the next step towards a perfect introduction to electronics and programming. We've taken the original Circuit Playground Classic and...
DC Gearbox Motor - TT Motor with two long wires and yellow body
Perhaps you've been assembling a new robot friend, adding a computer for a brain and other fun personality touches. Now the time has come to let it leave the nest and fly on...
5V 2A Wall Wart switching power supply
This is an FCC/CE certified and UL listed power supply. Need a lot of 5V power? This switching supply gives a clean regulated 5V output at up to 2000mA. 110 or 240 input, so it works...
Panel Mount Extension USB Cable - Micro B Male to Micro B Female
Check out this handy MicroUSB extension cable, which will make it easy for you to enclose a device that has a B type (micro USB host) port. Great if you need to extend the USB...
Panel Mount 10K Log Potentiometer with On-Off Switch
This potentiometer is a two-in-one: it's a log taper 10K ohm potentiometer, with a grippy shaft and it comes with an on-off...


You'll need some additional hardware like screws and nuts to assemble this project. Note the different screw head types used. Mostly using metric M3 size screws. Flat head screws are used for creating flush joinery. Ball bearings are used to create the pivoting platform. Source them from your local hardware store or purchase online.

5 x 10x15x4mm Bearings
10pcs. 10x15x4mm Precision Ball Bearings Steel ABEC 1 Rubber Seals
2 x M3 x 25mm Machine Screws
Pan Head – Used for TT Motor
4 x M3 x 4mm Machine Screws
Pan Head – Used for CRICKIT
3 x M3 x 6mm Machine Screws
Pan Head – Used for platform
3 x M3 x 8mm Machine Screws
Flat Head – Used for container holder
3 x M3 Metric Hex Jam Nuts
Used for securing platform assembly
1 x Silver Metal Knob for Potentiometer
Knurled Machined Aluminum


A list of helpful tools used to make this project.

1 x M3 Screw Tap
Metric M3 x 0.5 Threaded Taper Tap
1 x Third Helping Hands
Good for holding wires, boards and small stuff
1 x Panavise Jr.
Mini vise good for holding medium size things.
1 x Precision Flat Pliers
Helps pull stuff apart with needle nose
1 x Wire Strippers
Hakko 20-30 AWG Wire Strippers
1 x Soldering Iron
A few good ones to choose from
1 x Ultimaker's PVA FIlament
350g water-soluble support material for multi-extrusion 3D printing

Prerequisite Guides

If you're new to Adafruit CRICKIT, Circuit Python and soldering, take a moment to walk through the following guides to get you started.

This guide was first published on Aug 28, 2018. It was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

This page (Overview) was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

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