Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Do's and Dont's of 3D Printing...

As you guys continue to work on your cellular explorations and aggregate studies, please keep the following in mind in regards to the 3d printer:

-The volumetric size of the printing bin is 8x10x12 (W x L x H)
-There is not an exact method for transferring scales from what you've modeled in Maya or elsewhere into the software for 3d printing. The objects you will be giving me will be visually scaled, rotated, and positioned in order to optimize printing. This is not to say that the objects are scaleless, I will be able to approximate sizes based on a fixed, real world dimension. For example, if you tell me the base of your model should be about 5 inches based on a scale you've established, I can match this within the 3d printing software.

In terms of what you should actually be printing; Since this is midterm, focus on the potentiality of the cells you have created and the ways which they can aggregate based on the parameters you've established.. such as accommodating various functions and engaging a general ground condition. This means you should establish a notion of how this aggregation should be oriented in respect to a ground.

It is up to you to determine how many cells are necessary to adequately present the logic of your aggregate system.. keep in mind the various examples Eric has shown.

Some things to avoid:
-Delicate freestanding armatures (less than 1/8 of an inch in printed thickness). This thickness can differ slightly based on the nature of your model. For instance, there may be thin armatures provided that they circuit back into a larger mass, and the proportionate span of these armatures does not create a moment force which is greater than the joints which hold this armature can support.

NOTE: for details inscribed within a surface this rule does not necessarily apply, as engraving upon surfaces typically does not effect the structural integrity of that surface.

-Holes in your geometry. (This is different then a hole which has deliberately been punched out of a form and has received the necessary side walls)

-Overlapping Surfaces. (try to avoid surfaces which simply overlap, where no clear joint has been established.)

Other than that, everything is fair game. Keep in mind, the 3d printer is capable of printing highly complex forms provided you work within these basic parameters, so be sure to capitalize on this idea. You wouldn't want to 3d print something which can easily be produced by other means. As mentioned earlier, things can differ on a case to case basis, this is why it is essential to send me your models early so we will be able to consult with you on its feasibility for printing, and you will have enough to make changes, if necessary. Nobody wants a broken 3d model, it will be a waste of your own time and money.

1 comment:

  1. 3D printing designers, seeing and touching design prototype changes, dramatically reduces time to market. Companies that have switched from handmade 3d modelling to technology focused 3D prototypes have seen drastic reductions in cost and creation time from months to a couple weeks!