Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Simple machine

The next step in my printing adventure, to print a simple machine.  Rather it has a movable part.  Something else I can use, a guitar string winder.  This was found on the Thingiverse, and it snaps together so I can see how well that goes.  There was a suggestion posted to print it at 105% for a better fit, so I set that as well.

It printed well at premium settings; although a little blotchy.  Some sanding was needed for it to be put together.  It turns nice, but does not 'snap' together really.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Sending up the bat signal

Wanted to take a short break and so this turned out to be about a 30 minute project (30 minutes to draw, 30 minutes to print).  Someone wanted a bat-keychain, and a simple one.  A million models of this kind of thing exists... but I decided to try to draw it form scratch.

I found an appropriate bat-logo design image, and imported it into Sketchup.  I ended up having to install the bezier curve extension to get the right bat curves, and also the STL extension so that I could export the finished model for use in the 3d printer.  I was stymied for a moment on how to make the ending shape a face, but just drawing one line on top of it make Sketchup recognize the face.

I also drew it too large, and by accident, found out how to resize the whole model so that it was 4 inches wide total.

4 inches turns out to be too big.  He will want the finished project half this size.

Printing was interesting - I printed it at the lowest resolution and least filled (Draft version), and I'm happy with it.  it is filled with a wide crosshatching, and the first 2 solid layers over that drooped naturally.

I'm going to keep this as a scroll saw template project.  But this now makes me curious about very tiny prints....

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Day 1.5 - Super Key Chain

So Jessica decided to test the machine on a simple Superman (tm) keychain.  The end result - it will probably hold on to a keychain...

It's a bit lumpier than we thought, and she's going to clean it up and paint it.

Moreover, we learned more - we tried to print it twice, and it started messing up immediately, clumping the filament.  To fix this, we first cleaned the plate and re-applied the glue (this machine wants to use glue instead of blue tape, but I think we may try the tape at some point).

Next, we leveled the plate.  We had originally thought it had an auto plate leveler, but no.  We started the leveling program, and slid paper under the nozzles, adjusting the knobs underneath to get juuuuust the right fit.

The third time was the charm, and the keychain printed.

Day 1 - phone case

Okay, technically this is day 2.  We received the Cube Pro Duo yesterday, unpacked it, and set it on the cart.  I went through the activation steps.. but the site said invalid serial number.  I was reasonably sure it hadn't 'fallen off a truck', so I contacted support, who activated the warranty for me the following morning.  Today.

Cartridge install, take one. 

Attempted to push the filament through the tubes with some success, but the motors were not grabbing the thread.   Turns out I had not cur the end at a sharp enough angle.  Once I did that, I was able to push it through enough for it to catch, and out came the stringy stuff.

Test project

I didn't have an immediate work-related project, so I wanted to do something somewhat simple, to make sure the Cube worked, and have something useful.  So I decided to print a new case for my Galaxy Note 2.  These really aren't made any more, so this created opportunity!  I installed the Mac version of the Cube program, then went to the Thingiverse to see if I could find a model.  I did, and downloaded the model.  It came in 4 different thicknesses, so I opted for the 2mm version for the first try.  I imported the file into the Cube program, and flipped over the model so it would not have to print in midair.  I exported the Cube file to the USB drive, and inserted it into the Cube.


There is a slight odor,  not terribly unpleasant.  Hard to describe, but a light plasticy-type smell.  It's about as loud as a typical inject computer, although a bit louder at times.  The estimated time to print is 2 hours.  Hopefully it won't be too much of a disturbance today, but it may be good to let others know next time in case anyone wanted to do any quick audio recording.

Cube at work

One more hour

25 minutes left

2 hours, 12 minutes total
It fits!  Mostly.  Did not like the last few layers where it overhangs at the top a bit - I did not choose to include support materials, so it may have needed them after all.  

The hole for the camera and light match okay, though rough.  And after I snipped away some of the loose material, it still holds the phone fairly well, but loosely.

I'll sand it a bit and make it look cleaner - I think it picked up some of the glue used on the plate, making it look dirty.

So a number of things to do differently next time, but proof that the machine works as advertised?