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joy of 3d printing

ipowereverywhere's Avatar

so as everyone knows it has been snowing like mad up north… so yesterday a few of us sat and talked about our heat not turning off and the drawbacks…after an hour we found an issue we all had, a solution to our problem and sketches… 1:45 pm EST im looking at it in two versions and ready to test…. if your still on the fence on buying a 3d printer you owe it to yourself!

heres one for two hundred bucks: https://store.makibox.com/#/product-detail?type...

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kdc's Avatar

Thanks for the info, Brian. That seems to be a really good price. Is that the same one that you have? One day, I will own one like that! But, I have to get a desktop first…I’m STILL using my laptop since September.

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

nope we use two Afinia’s here for everyday printing, and then we have the Mojo for high detail printing. Walking the floor at CES yesterday I did find a real nice SLA unit I want though for under 5k that prints a larger footprint than the competition..so I may have to work that into the yearly budget someone- full color 3d printing is still a dream of mine ( EN has the unit I want ) but we cant justify the $800 lease payment a month here since we would just have something that realistic made at a partner factory that would be as close to preproduction as possible…

I posted that link because it tells you anyone can get into the world of “maker” now for crazy low prices- and a printer like that would work on a laptop all day long without a hitch so no worries on needed a super rig.

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williamj's Avatargold

Thanks for the link Brian.

For the past couple of days I’ve been looking at the EventBot (kit). It sells for around 600(US), I believe. The output for the EventBot is somewhere around 8"(x)by10"(y)by6"(z).

I’m not sure I want to put that much into an entry into 3D printing but it has a nice large print volume. The Makibot would make a very nice alternative.

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

Youll find large scale printing is usually made up of many small pieces…so while its nice to print large, take a look at your item and youll see its actually a puzzle of pieces that make a beautiful picture when put together.. i prototyped the entire Liberty Lantern on the Afinia and its well beyond the print scale of the Afinia, but piece by piece assembled it made the same product… so in some cases “size doesnt matter” ;)

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speedbump's Avatar

Super Ben here’s a recent post concerning 3D printing from a few days ago.

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williamj's Avatargold

Update: I recently ordered the Makibox and it should be here in about 8 weeks or less.

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

That’s great news William!! We just launched a kick starter campaign Friday for 3d printing… I love trying new things but I have no idea what I’m doing in terms of PR…hopefully the agency we hired gets the ball going this week!!
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1045344246...

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obi1adobe's Avatarg8_badge

brian – kewl ! best of luck

wlliam – i am sure many of us here are very anxious the hear what you have to say once you have had some time with your new toy !

Lb

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williamj's Avatargold

Brian – Larry,

I only wish I could have ordered one sooner. I could really use one right about now but am able to work around not having one. As it is they’re still trying to meet their Kickstarter fulfillments. So it will be a while until I get my machine.

Brian, I really like the idea and the finished product for your Kickstarter campaign. I wish I could say that I was ready to commit to a case but it’s still all very much an unknown for me. Although I do have an idea for a use for your case. That being said I really hope you are successful with the campaign and that I would be able to get a case a little further down the road.

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

Thanks William.. we did it for the heck of it… nothing to lose… so no pressure on the outcome… but glad you liked it

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miked's Avatar

Where might I pay to have my idea 3D printed ? I thought STAPLES was going to start offering 3D service but I don’t think it is avaialble yet.

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williamj's Avatargold

Michael,

Take a look at this thread…

“Tim Hayes G8 member does awesome graphics!! Need Help?? Contact Tim!”

In the thread Tim states that he does 3D printing. Several people have vouched for his work in the thread.

Just a direction that you “might” want to investigate.

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

Mike, Shapeways.com is the best place for rapid prototyping and have a large selection of materials…plus the cost is fantastic- google around and you can easily find some coupon codes!

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gadgetmanken's Avatargold

Michael, Staples has 3d printers now, at least in my area. They were going to have them displayed but, at $1,200.00 a piece it’s unlikely I would display one either if I was selling them. Customers gotta touch n feel things. SNAP!! Ooops , darn it I didn’t mean to break it. You have to order them online.

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ngillbanks's Avatar

I own a RepRapPro Tricolour printer and our local hackerspace has 2 makerbots, a Form One and in inhouse designed delta. I have a moderate amount of experience with 3D printers so I feel confident in saying 3D printing is not quite ready for consumer level use just yet.

The frustration factor is very high and the learning curve is very steep. There are a lot of factors that need to be balanced and they affect each other. Each type of material has its’ own set of challenges and even different colours of the same material behave differently.

So if you are a person who gets frustrated easily or discouraged by failed prints, you might want to wait another year or so to try 3d printing. If you want to experience the 3D printed products, then send your designs to a printing service like Shapeways.

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williamj's Avatargold

Thanks for the input Neil, that certainly makes sense.

However, being the glutton for punishment that I am …

I canceled my order with Makibox and then ordered one from Ez3D. The only reason I canceled Makibox was that the lead time seamed way too long. I believe the young people who started the Makibox Kickstarter campaign got in a little to far over their heads. I believe them to be reputable but they are on a very steep learning curve and it’s the lead time that’s suffering.

The people at Ez3D seem to have a little more business savvy and it “seems” like they have a little bit better handle on operations. Ez3D states that they have a 4 to 6 week lag fulfilling Kickstarter backers and ‘then’ they will begin processing web orders. Also, the price is very compatible with Makibox, just a tad more. When ordering, Ez3D only charges $100.00US to place you in the queue, then once “your” machine begins process the rest is then charged to your payment specifications.

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gadgetmanken's Avatargold

Has anyone seen the Lumifold Foldable 3D printer mentioned in the November/December edition in Inventors Digest? It uses UV sensitive liquid and could almost fit in your pocket. It prints 90mm x 90mm x 90mm which is approx. 3.5 in. square . It’s an Indiegogo project as of now but will be selling for around $429.00. To $599.00 I’ll try to provide a link. I don’t quite understand how it works, but understand the SLA technology. (Stereolithography)

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/lumifold-the-...

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gadgetmanken's Avatargold

SLA usually works by using a laser moving back and forth over a thin layer of resin. The laser more or less hardens the resin by the light as it draws layer by layer. But I don’t see anything moving, and the video shows it hardening every time the light flashes. I guess I ’ll have to watch the video a few more times till I figure it out.

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matt's Avataren_staff_badge

Kenneth,
On our last snow day, I took my son to the office and he built a LEGO on one of our 3D printers (this one in particular was SLA). You can see in this Vine that I took how the laser works. That platform lifts out of the resin ever few passes. While you can clearly see the laser trace the LEGO, you really can’t see the actual thing you are making, though, until you take it out of the machine because the resin cures more or less clear. It’s sort of like looking at the Predator when it lifts up out of the resin and dips back in.

https://vine.co/v/MuV7IJFraUL

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matt's Avataren_staff_badge

Once it’s out of the SLA machine, you clean off the scaffolding (which is used to keep your part from sticking to the platform) and then cure it in a UV “oven” as seen here:

https://vine.co/v/MuVt61MAFX2

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gadgetmanken's Avatargold

That’s cool that you can share this new and exciting 3D frontier with your son. So I ‘m guessing that the tongue of this foldable version starts out just barely under the resin and lowers millimeters at a time between the flashes of light from the over head projector? I’m not used to seeing a tongue in a cup, mostly a platform in a vat ! I was thinking why an overhead projector? But I guess it is because of the intensity of the bright light. But it would seem somewhat difficult (IMO) to focust the light to that small area! Being its a micro foldable device I was thinking a pico projector would be perfect. But they mentioned why in the video, because the pico projectors aren’t bright enough. Now I’m guessing that they are planning on using a laser at some point. I recall they mentioned mirrors and lasers.

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rule96's Avatar

So, I took a previous R8 from Edison (Belk search) and worked it up to a 3D design STL file using Cubify (nice little program) and set it up in on Shapeways.

Then I used a website to promote…. www.klip3.com

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speedbump's Avatar

Kev… Nice graphics and the site looks professional. Good luck with your product.

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

Excellent value – http://www.plasticscribbler.com/store/

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gadgetmanken's Avatargold

Our local news did a story on a 3D printer that printed out candy at a SXWS tech convention. They also have a 3D Oreo Printer with your choice of 12 fillings, and colors! News from the Wall Street Journal.
What a cool idea!

http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2014/03/08/at-sxsw-...

http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2014/03/06/twitter-...

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rule96's Avatar

Here’s a question.

I’m currently getting into Cubify Invent as a tool for setting up prototypes for 3D printing. I have one idea that is presently in the mix here at EN. I have managed (thanks some great tutorials on you-tube) to get a fairly useful rendering.

To the question – if I send this to say Shapeways to get it printed (without offering it to public view) do I fall foul of the public disclosure rule?

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bigtrike7001's Avatar

Wish me luck everyone I am taking a class on intro into 3d printing tonight,

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williamj's Avatargold

Good Luck Scott !!!

Where you taking your class at… community college ??

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bigtrike7001's Avatar

It’s a maker site in Columbus.

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bigtrike7001's Avatar

Look them up, Columbus idea foundry

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sunto's Avatar

I have heard good things about the New Makerbot I may be tempted one day need to create my R&D slush fund first. Better save my penny’s .

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qpea00's Avatar

hi everyone. i am new to EN and would like to know if anyone has heard of a software program called Pepakura Designer? i think of it as a poor man’s diy 3d printer and if you can cut and glue papers together then you can do this.

i came across this program when i was looking for ways to make my own 3d designs into prototypes and since i am living in a small island in the southwest pacific getting my hands on any high tech 3d printer is totally out of the question. i am always looking for a cheaper and easier way to do things. so take a look, be amazed and make your prototypes at home and save money.

theres some youtube videos on how to make your paper pepakura projects hardened with all sorts of steps and products found at any hardware stores. please do give this a try and who knows it might help our inventors here at EN added peace of mind if they can do their own prototypes at home.

i cant post links since i am not an insider yet but do search for Pepakura Designer for more info on this wonderful software.

i wish i could afford a 3d printer and with EN i have a good shot with my inventions but until that happy day arrives i dont mind the alternatives especially the diy kind… i love making things myself so this is a joy to do.

please excuse my english grammar and spelling and feel free to ask me questions about this post. i will try and explain better if i can.

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gadgetmanken's Avatargold

Just saw the ultimate solar powered 3d printer. It uses a fresnel lens to focus the sunlight to a small point and melts sand into glass crystals to form sand/ glass sculptures. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xDeSW44fkeI

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rpontius's Avatarg8_badge

I posted the below on another 3D Printing thread – can anyone give me any advice as I consider which 3D Printer to purchase?

Since I posted before, I’ve tentatively narrowed it down to:

1. Airwolf HD www.airwolf3d.com
2. MakerBot Replicator 5th Gen www.makerbot.com
3. Ultimaker www.ultimaker.com

The CubeX prints VERY slowly and uses only proprietary filament cartridges, so it has fallen out of consideration in my mind despite great resolution and 2-3 color printing. Not super happy with the lead time for any of these.


I’ve been following and working with 3D printing technology for almost 15 years but hadn’t really had use of it for my own projects until the last few months. I recently enjoyed using a MakerBot Replicator 2 at www.techshop.com. It was such a great experience, I’m considering purchasing a MakerBot Replicator 5th Gen (or maybe a 3D Systems Cube X Duo).

Anyone with advice on purchasing a 3D printer – I’d be very appreciative if you would share your thoughts.

Based on the features I want, I’m probably looking for something in the $3000 price range:

- Minimum 100 micron resolution
- PLA printing capability
- At least a 6×6×8 build envelope
- Currently shippable, or available within weeks

Would love a printer that could also:

- Print with PLA and ABS and maybe even dissolvable supports
- Print with 2 or more colors/materials at once

Remember, if you are a veteran, you can get a Techshop membership for FREE:

www.techshop.com/veterans

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ipowereverywhere's Avatar

Rob, the ultimaker 2 is pretty nice but not nearly as discussed online as the Makerbot…personally the Makerbot has a lot more control over using 3d party experimental filaments like wood, metal etc etc… in regards to speed the ultimaker 2 is way faster than Makerbot

the air wolf hd still relies on open source slicers and engines so the learning curve is a little crazy if this is your first FDM machine. The CubeX isnt actually all that slow- what makes it unique is the auto level bed which is FANTASTIC when doing prints that tend to warp because just a hair more air under a part causes lift.

We personally have a printrbot XL and two afinia’s here in the office. I LOVE my affinias as they are rock solid and the software is real nice in terms of importing and fixing…that said I have preorder my next baby that I am beyond excited about to get… I am visiting them next week while Im in vegas for the hardware show- but I already have this companies fantastic CNC machine so I am sure the printer will be just as solid…I would def. suggest checking them out…its a whole other level of printing.

http://fslaser.com/products/3d-printers/pegasus...

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destinyinc05's Avatar

I see the new revaluation with the 3 d printer it’s on the ground floor but it will take the place of manufacturing and shipping.Just remember the first in home use will be. The 3d coffee maker that will have a voice command will be not only making coffee but will also make the cup you drink it in as well can we say star trek its coming

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sunto's Avatar

Just been looking at the brand new Makerbot z 18 now that looks a nice bit of kit I just wonder how much this tec can develop I would love to see the finished results . Maybe one day I may treat myself . By that time they will of got a new model out .

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williamj's Avatargold

Just received notification that my Ez3D printer is in the assemble/shipping que. Made necessary prerequisite shipping payment and will be notified when unit is assembled and ready to ship.

All totaled it topped out at just north of 500US, that’s a fully assembled unit, ABS fillament spool and shipping.

Really looking forward to playing with my new toy.

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sunto's Avatar

Very cool William would be good to hear how you like it

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williamj's Avatargold

Me thinks I have yet another learning curve to traverse. I’m adequate with simple 2D CAD. This is not only 3D but then you have to convert that to a file format the printer will understand.

Looks like it might be time to visit the local community college for some tutoring sessions.

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sunto's Avatar

If you can do it William maybe their is hope for me

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williamj's Avatargold

Just got another notice… printer has been shipped. Can you believe that? They shipped it on Mother’s Day !

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sunto's Avatar

Hi William
Looking forward to hearing about your new toy. What is the build area how big can you make a component and what file type is used . I am interested I send models to my manufacture but I do not know if they convert them to another file . I understand the sometimes create external props to help some builds and these can be removed after . Hope that made sence.
Look forward to seeing how you go on . If you want any quick models to play with I have no problems creating something for you .
Dave

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dljinnovations's Avatargold

Congrats on the new toy William. Should be fun. From what I remember, the file conversion should be pretty straight-forward.

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williamj's Avatargold

David,

Here are the features as listed on their website (www.ez3d.org). Apparently they have a proprietary software for the printer.

I was referring to taking a 3D rendered file (as in Google SketchUp) and converting that to (I believe it’s) STL so the printer can understand it. There’s something about slicing it into layers or something. That’s the kind of stuff I gotta try and get my head around. lol

Key Features:
•Heated build platform (supports ABS and PLA)
•Large build volume (250w x 215d x 200h mm) (9.8" wide x 8.5" deep x 7.9" tall)
•Easy to use software.
•Dual extruder available
•Reliable RAMBo electronics
•Materials supported: PLA, ABS, Nylon, etc.
•"Rewind" feature to help recover from failures.

Thanks for the congrats Derrick. This looks to be a frustratingly fun time. LOLOL

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rpontius's Avatarg8_badge

williamj et al.:

Sending a 3D file to a printer actually involves two file formats:

1. Within a 3D CAD program you simply “save as” a .STL (Standard Tessellated Language or Stereolithography file)

2. You then import the .STL into a “Slicer” program. For a Makerbot this is “Makerware”.

The output of the Slicer program is a second file format that is understandable by the 3D printer – basically a kind of “G Code” that tells the printer head where to go in terms of X, Y, and Z coordinates.

This is actually all pretty straightforward once you get into it.

The foundation of success in 3D printing is (in my view) the 3D CAD modeling – this is the precursor to everything and the most time-consuming step. Make sure your 3D models are “watertight” – i.e., true solids. Use www.netfabb.com and www.meshlab.com to fix any geometry problems with your models.

Helpful info here:

http://www.shapeways.com/tutorials/how_to_use_m...

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rpontius's Avatarg8_badge

Brian:

I’m just seeing your comments below. Good stuff – thanks.

I’m still dithering around on which printer to buy – this tech is so fast-moving it’s kind of Heisenbergian.

In the meantime I’ll use www.techshop.com, www.shapeways.com, and www.makexyz.com for printing my models.

Incidentally, using Make XYZ (that last link above) anyone can “rent out” time on their 3D printer. While I don’t know anyone who has even had “simple payback” on their printer, it can produce some revenue (or even just a good “story” for my wife about how this can pay for itself…)

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williamj's Avatargold

Thanks for the info and links Robert, it’s very much appreciated.

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rpontius's Avatarg8_badge

My pleasure William. FYI – I believe there’s a Techshop coming to Chicagoland.

Regarding learning your machine – my experience is that the learning curve is very hardware and software dependent so ideally you’d find someone with the same machine to tutor you.

You might want to look into this (cloud-based) 3D software from Autodesk, the maker of AutoCAD and Inventor:

http://fusion360.autodesk.com/about

Fusion 360 approaches the functionality of Autodesk Inventor (~$10,000) but it is FREE for “non-commercial” (“enthusiast or student”) use. I have yet to get an answer from Autodesk on whether making illustrations for invention submissions is “commercial” or not. Even if it is commercial, AutoDesk uses an innovative $40/month “commercial” subscription model rather than the huge upfront cost of most (high-end) 3D design software – which is what led me finally to part company with industry leader Solidworks and their antiquated business practices. Plus the CEO of Autodesk is “one of us” – a maker.

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sunto's Avatar

Thanks for the info William good look mate and a good read Robert . You sound like you know your stuff.

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kubbs's Avatar

william you already got your phoenix??? i am one of the kickstarter backers that has been awaiting for his printer to show up. Most of us backers havent received our printers yet and just recently found out that they have been shipping the printers that we paid for through the kickstarter and indigogo websites to new customers like yourself.

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williamj's Avatargold

kel p,

Yes, I do have my Phoenix. I have no idea why I have it already when, apparently, some of the Kickstarter and Indigogo supporters do not. I’m thinking it’s a mishap in the data for shipping labels and the names where downloaded out of order. I’m sure you and everyone else will receive your machine at the earliest possible time. On a positive note, the Phoenix arrived completely in tack and undamaged. Apparently they got theirs shipping issues under control now.

I am having some difficulties with getting it running though. I trying to repurpose an old lap top and it may not be able to meet the current software standards. Gotta try a few more things as well as hooking it up to my desk top (a more current machine).

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