I'm working on a gripper design that can pick up a paintbrush. The gripper will be attached to a CNC-like cartesian robot for manipulation of the brush in 3D. I've built the CNC but this is my first attempt at designing anything like a gripper. Here's a drawing of what I'm thinking:
The solenoid would be a pull solenoid, which would open the gripper. The spring would hold the gripper closed on the brush (the circle with an X in it) when the power to the solenoid is off. Everything except the piston would be fixed in place.
I need the length to the right of the brush to be a max of about 3". I haven't quite figured out my needed stroke length, but I'm thinking 1" is more than enough, maybe less. I want to be able to use a variety of size brushes, but I can cut them and attach them to a standardized cylinder for the gripper to grab on to.
So my questions are:
1. does this look reasonable?
2. any ideas to improve or a completely different direction that my be preferable?
3. any pointers to appropriate solenoids?
4. any ideas on how to figure out the necessary strength of the solenoid vs. the spring tension?
Answers (or commentary) to as few as 1 or maybe even 0 of those questions are appreciated!