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Thread: 3D Printing

  1. #1
    RBW Member kevinbieri will become famous soon enough kevinbieri will become famous soon enough kevinbieri will become famous soon enough kevinbieri's Avatar
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    3D Printing

    Just found this place and thought I would pass it on.

    Shapeways | passionate about creating

    Its a fairly economical 3D printing shop that doesn't attempt to charge you by bound volume but rather by the volume of the materials. The materials that they list are claimed waterproof but I have not received an answer from the materials originator regarding water absorbency under pressure. If nothing else the printing in stainless for custom D Rings and the like is pretty cool.

    I am going to have a couple of pieces made and see how far I get and what kind of quality I get back.

    Kevin

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    Re: 3D Printing

    We followed this route some time ago when we were looking into buying our own machine.
    What we found was the parts required some finishing, especially if cavity based where construction supports were required.
    The ABS printers claim 80% structural strength of moulded components, we found that to be an exagerated claim. In terms of strength, the parts were brittle.

    It was easier to hand make components in the machine shop than to invest in the machine and not be able to use the part for anything else than visual evaluation.
    If the part was suitable for use then it would have been perfect to export the STL file from Solidworks into the machine. Especially for one off parts tha can be printed overnight.

    Did you notice this on their site?

    Disclaimer

    "Please note that the materials we use for manufacturing the models make the models suitable for decorative purposes and they are not suited for any other purpose. The models are not suitable as toys to be given to children. The models should not come in contact with electricity or food & drinks and should be kept away from heat.
    Last edited by divetheworld; 1st March 2010 at 16:09.
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    Re: 3D Printing

    Quote Originally Posted by kevinbieri  View Original Post
    Just found this place and thought I would pass it on.

    Shapeways | passionate about creating

    Its a fairly economical 3D printing shop that doesn't attempt to charge you by bound volume but rather by the volume of the materials. The materials that they list are claimed waterproof but I have not received an answer from the materials originator regarding water absorbency under pressure. If nothing else the printing in stainless for custom D Rings and the like is pretty cool.

    I am going to have a couple of pieces made and see how far I get and what kind of quality I get back.

    Kevin
    The biggest issues I found (as mentioned already too) brittle plastics, and finishing.

    Even for simple parts, the surface texture can be a pain to work with, especially if you are trying to do radii for o-ring seats - No matter how it was oriented during printing, I couldn't get a functional prototype to seal.

    On the other hand, there are many, many companies out there who will snap up small quantity project work and do full cnc machining. A great place to bid out work is CNCzone.com-Machinist Community Forums - Welcome Page . I've had a few projects done this way with fantastic results.

    Ultimately, using SolidWorks, McMaster-Carr and CNCzone.com-Machinist Community Forums - Welcome Page you can build anything you can think of.

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    Re: 3D Printing

    there are some machines that can get really high resolution, but it seems the price of the machine rises exponentially with the resolution. Even then there are going to be steps in between the layers of plastic, its just a matter of how thin of layers the machine can print.

    The printing is really only structural on one axis. Its not to difficult to break the layers apart, especially with some machines. what 3d printers are good for is making molds for simple thermo set plastic molding, But then your getting into more work than its worth.

    just my 2 cents

  5. #5

    Re: 3D Printing

    In a previous job, as a univeristy researcher, I worked with at rapid protoyping research group. I even invented a novel means of 3D prinitng - that is until a more thorough review of the prior art discovered that someone else had thought of it (and patented it) before me.

    I have, however, retained a thorough interest in the subject especially as my current employment makes use of low volume complicated parts. I have yet to find plastics suitable for such techniques with the necessary chemical/thermal resistance for such manufacturing techniques. Not only is mechanical performance an issue but many methods leave unacceptable levels of of porosity/voids.

    Duncan

  6. #6

    Re: 3D Printing

    best results we had to date were with using a wax or PVC printer, making a mold out of the part (plaster etc), melting it out and using a vacuum to draw in proper materials. Molds were one time use, destroyed during part removal. Similar process to lost wax casting. We never tried to make any sealing parts however.

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    Allen

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    Re: 3D Printing

    Quote Originally Posted by kevinbieri  View Original Post
    Just found this place and thought I would pass it on.

    Shapeways | passionate about creating

    Its a fairly economical 3D printing shop that doesn't attempt to charge you by bound volume but rather by the volume of the materials. The materials that they list are claimed waterproof but I have not received an answer from the materials originator regarding water absorbency under pressure. If nothing else the printing in stainless for custom D Rings and the like is pretty cool.

    I am going to have a couple of pieces made and see how far I get and what kind of quality I get back.

    Kevin
    for your info, when we made the first prototypes for new DSV's, we used printing
    when testing in our ANSTI machine, it took less then 2 minutes to have them filled completely with water: so porous!

    rapid prototyping is ok for dimentional testing, have a good idea of how it feels in your hands, the look etc, but not for mechanical strength, in water tests etc

    paul
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    Re: 3D Printing

    Laser sintering.

    Used by some of the F1 teams for structural components.

    Quicker than 5axis machining.



  9. #9
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    Re: 3D Printing

    Starting to play with my new printer. I had a loop failing negative last week and no idea where it was, but wanted to isolate it at least to one lung or something.

    So I made some block-off plugs:





    Don't know if you can make out the crushed hose but they held a decent negative for half an hour. I then opened the DSV to release the pressure and got an unexpected (but understandable) test of the inhale mushroom - the crush on the inhale side wouldn't go away. I ended up having to pull that hose off the DSV and pop the mushroom out to release the vacuum.

    Now, Paul has a good point. When it first came off the printer I could suck air through it just by popping it in my gob and inhaling. Five minutes with a brush and acetone to soften and mush the outside layers together, half an hour to sit and let the acetone evaporate, and it was happy with the light vacuum.

    I wouldn't trust it with a 7 bar fitting. But atmospheric kinda pressure differentials with the right surface treatment? Not too bad. And for the serious pressure stuff there's nothing stopping us from printing a female mould and shooting resin or something into that: solid, strong, etc.

  10. #10
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    Re: 3D Printing

    Been a while since the last post.

    I've not really bothered printing anything for the loop for ages but we were doing something related today and, just for shits and giggles, I printed off a 7 thread DIN blocking plug in ABS at 255ºC with 200µm layer height.

    My chief safety support guy (aka egger onner "Carn, give it a go, it'll be hilarious) watched from a safe distance. I was encased in the best safety gear ever to have fallen off the back of a truck: face shield, ear muffs, glasses, gloves, tshirt, boardies and sandals, not one with a CE rating.

    Popped an o-ring into the seat, wound it into a tank.

    Pointed the valve at my wash tub 10m away.

    Cracked open the tank valve - carefully.

    It completely failed to fail. No excitement at all. What? Got some soapy water and sprayed it over, yep, some bubbles up the thread. Understandable considering some of the print artefacts I'd not bothered cleaning off the o-ring groove. But no bubbling through the plastic, no catastrophic failure, just the kind of gentle bubble which would leave you saying "Meh, do this dive but change the o-ring tonight".

    No "OMG printed plastic is porous and leaks like a sieve" foamy carry on.

    No "OMG printed plastic is weak as piss along the inter-layer bonds it will separate and explode".

    No "OMG you have 750kg pushing on that plug, it will just shear the threads and pop the plug like a cannon".

    I was expecting some combination of all three of these things to result in a bang, a little bit of wee coming out, and a lot of laughs. But nope, she held.

    Only 150 bar in the tank as it turned out.

    Would I trust it? Not on your life. Certainly not on mine. I'm not about to 3D print a first stage. But I was damned impressed to see that printed plastic when done right will hold a hell of a lot more than 1 or 2 bar, will hold it without epoxy impregnation or acetone skinning or any of that business, and is considerably stronger than I'd ever have thought possible.

    There's hope for this technology yet.

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