Fully Functional Airplane Joystick Grip

case-studies Description

Taking 3D Printing to the Skies with Airplane Joystick

The Challenge

ScaleBirds needed to source an authentic reproduction of an iconic 1940’s joystick grip for their replica P-36 LiteFighter aircraft. It needed to be accurate as possible to the original piece, while still being durable enough to meet handling requirements. Traditional tooling would have been extremely costly due to the fine surface detail and would have had lead times of over two weeks.

The Solution

Using a combination of LOCTITE 3D IND406 and LOCTITE 3D 3843 White, our service bureau partners at Trimech were able to print the joystick grip for significantly less cost than traditional tooling, while still meeting all design and functionality requirements.


  • High dimensional accuracy allow the sharp diamond knurl texture to be printed directly into the part for enhanced grip.
  • Extremely durable materials that can withstand consistent handling with minimal wear and tear.
  • Heat deflection temperature of LOCTITE IND406 allows the part to perform in real world environments, such as a sealed cockpit, with no significant part deformation.

Developed together with