With the government pushing 3D printers, how long before we see schools 3D printing flat shapes to slot together or a pupil 3D printing a rectangular box they could have bought for half the price from RS or Rapid!
So what sort of projects make good use of 3D printers? How about a small folding tripod?
The attached model has a conventional 1/4 Whitworth thread bolt for mounting the camera. Some of you may be thinking "where is the design in this". Apart from redesigning the components, very few smart phones have a thread mount so challenge students to create an attachment that screws on to hold their smart phone.
The model hasn't been 3D printed yet so if you have a 3D printer and could print a set of parts to check everything works that would be great. Better still if someone could print and send me a set of parts that would be fantastic! Would anyone with a 3D printer be interested in co-writing an article for D&TA?
See the video of the tripod folding here: http://communities.ptc.com/videos/4416
Ruth Thompson in Australia is going to try it out on their Dimension 768SST 3D printer. The soluble support should make it possible to create the internal and external threads.
I will post all offers here plus the make of machine and any feedback on the results so we can compare the quality fo parts each machine produces.
Tim - I've just had a look at your model...
I was going to attempt a print from my single extruder Rapman but due to the overhangs on parts and lack of flat base surfaces it wont be possible.
The design of your parts is only suitable for a fused deposition modeller that has a support material extruder (something like PLA that can be washed away in lye) as well as the model material extruder (ABS).
It would print fine from a granular materials binding type machine like a Zprinter but not many schools have those.
James, many thanks for the feedback. I can see how the legs and central boss could have one side flat so no support material needed. Do you think the external thread would build properly? The cap could have a perfectly flat top for building upside down but the thread may still be the problem.
The Cube and UP! use build plastic as support but with tiny attachment points. Does the Rapman have that facility?
Do you think it would be worthwhile collating what comes in to produce guidance notes for students on modelling for the capabilities of the different machines and, advice for schools purchasing 3D printers? The problem with the latter is we don;t have access to all the technologies and the rate new printers are coming out.
There is a new DFE initiative to supply a number of 3D printers to Teaching Schools. This will need some training in the use of 3D CAD and support resources as Tim suggests. D&TA already have this on the radar!
I've been test printing the central boss this morning. I found that KISSslicer does enable a less dense support material with one extruder. The settings I used were too "dense" though so the support got stuck in the thread! I think it will print without support. I'll set it running again later.
Oh to be in England and have funding for 3D printing and CAM!
Don't be too envious, the DfE funded 20+ printers for the pilot schools and has promised printers for the teaching schools taking over from ITT in universities. Most schools will have to fight for school budgets alongside other subjects or seek sponsorship.
James, You are the first with pictures! I see what you mean by thread sagging.
Dave White modifed the design for single extruder with more conventional thread angles. This might help. His files can be downloaded here - http://communities.ptc.com/docs/DOC-4565
I just received from the PTC Fort Collins office two sets of parts made on a Stratysys Dimension SST machine. Many thanks Chris, they look really good.
Watch this space for a report on how well the parts go together...
Apart from the threads being too tight the model went together straight out of the box.
A few minutes with a needle file on the external thread had it working fine.
A 1/4" BSW bolt was super glued inside the cap and a piece of bicycle inner tube glued on a 'penny washer' before being trimmed.
Until I can source roll pins I am using M4 cheese head machine screws. The finished model works a treat.
The legs can be clamped at different angles to cope with sloping surfaces and/or tilt the camera.
Modifications - An acme thread profile suggested by Dave White with more clearance will remove the need for fettling. I will make the changes and post the revised models here.
This is a Yr11 pupil project straight off the 3D printer so still needs to be finished and components fitted etc. Every layer joins together using locating pins. It is an iPod dock. One of about 130 projects that will be 3D printed this year. Also some good work integrating the makerbot this year in Product Design & Resistant Materials. KS3 work using the Makerbot is also progressing but we need more machines to run with the entire year group of 270!! I will try to upload some examples soon