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Re: [HOn3] Re: 3D Printer

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  • Mike Bauers
    Going from what I m seeing reported as used in the Shapeways models, it s just about anything for software. Some are using the freeware version of Google
    Message 1 of 17 , May 6, 2013
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      Going from what I'm seeing reported as used in the Shapeways models, it's just about anything for software.

      Some are using the freeware version of Google Sketch-up, some are using the $300 MOI, some using the various versions of TurboCad-3d [Pro sometimes]. Of course some are using the high-priced stuff like AutoCad.

      But as I browse, I gotta swear that most people are using much less expensive or even free CAD software compared to AutoCad

      Look at the different programs MOI, TurboCad, and Sketch-up and you'll see that folks are not using the same sort of structured CAD program, to make their 3d prints.

      It is very much a matter of using what you feel comfortable working with.

      Best to ya...
      Mike Bauers
      Milwaukee, Wi, USA
    • Ivan Abrams
      The current status of 3D printing reminds me of the discussions a few years ago about digital photography, that is, it will never replace film. We saw how
      Message 2 of 17 , May 6, 2013
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        The current status of 3D printing reminds me of the discussions a few years ago about digital photography, that is, " it will never replace film. " We saw how wrong that was. Not saying that 3D printing will replace traditional manufacturing techniques, but I suspect it will revolutionize industry in a remarkably short time.
      • Tranz4mr
        Anyone know what the file type is used for the 3D files? In my current Aerospace Engineering life I model in ProE CAD. My customers send me 3D plastic printed
        Message 3 of 17 , May 6, 2013
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          Anyone know what the file type is used for the 3D files?

          In my current Aerospace Engineering life I model in ProE CAD.
          My customers send me 3D plastic printed objects to fit check with our test fixtures.
          Some of them are amazing with moving parts printed all in one shot.
          There are now 3D printers printing aerospace parts in titanium and aluminum.
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zApmGFDA6ow

          Now if they could combine plastics and metals…..
          The replicator isn't far off in the future.
          No more made in China? 3D printed in USA?
          Order the part file from Amazon and create it yourself?
        • wbvail20012001
          Several file types can be used for 3d printing but the most common one is the stereo lithography file type (.stl). The models must be true solids and not
          Message 4 of 17 , May 6, 2013
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            Several file types can be used for 3d printing but the most common one is
            the stereo lithography file type (.stl). The models must be true solids and
            not faceted models. Faceted models are hollow and, though they may look
            solid for rendering and modeling purposes, are more like boxes or paper
            models. Many software programs produce this type of 3d model and they will
            not print. I use a program called IronCad that uses both the Acis and
            Parasolild modeling kernels which are true solid modeling formats. Not sure
            about the other software programs but the output to 3d solids is the
            important step.

            The level of detail provided in 3d printing is something that is advancing
            in leaps and bounds (and so is the price for 3d prints using newer printers
            and materials).

            Now, if Form Labs can get their printer off and running
            http://formlabs.com/pages/our-printer at about $3,000, there might very well
            be a printer in every hobbyist's home some time in the future.


            Walter Vail

            Showcase Miniatures
            imageStudios
            imageReplicas

            13536 County Road 45
            Tuskegee, AL 36083
          • Joaquim Mitchel
            We are using a makerbot replicator 2X and Solidworks 2013 here in the company. We had a lot of problems to maintain dimension stability in our prototypes
            Message 5 of 17 , May 7, 2013
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              We are using a makerbot replicator 2X and Solidworks 2013 here in the
              company. We had a lot of problems to maintain dimension stability in our
              prototypes because the printer resolution wasn’t good. If we had same
              problems to produce faucets prototypes you could think what kind of problems
              we could have to produce same hon3 products!
              Best regards
              Joaquim Mitchel
            • John Stutz
              This may be of general interest. I expand on a previous reply to MCG. Perhaps excessively? As things currently stand, 3D printing trades off the detail
              Message 6 of 17 , May 8, 2013
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                This may be of general interest.
                I expand on a previous reply to MCG.
                Perhaps excessively?

                As things currently stand, 3D printing trades off the detail reproduction
                possible in a Grandt/PSC/Blackstone/... styrene injection molded model, or a
                Westerfield/Sunshine/... urethane flat cast kit, for the convenience of a one
                piece model, without the capital costs of multiple piece dies. I don't yet find
                that trade compelling for ordinary models. Where 3D printing shines is in very
                low demand prototypes, but as you point out, it is often far from matching the
                quality we have grown to expect from older technologies.

                With any approach, someone has to devise an original. With rubber molded
                Urethane this is an actual final size model. With lost-wax brass it is a
                slightly oversize model that can stand up to vulcanization. With injection
                molded plastics it is a final size negative model, cut out of metal blocks.
                This requires two or more pieces that can be be held in precise alignment for
                plastic injection, and can later be withdrawn from the final solid model. For
                an MDC-class car body, that requires a 5 or six piece mold, which goes far to
                explain the capital cost of the one-piece injection molded approach. A flat
                cast styrene kit can usually get by with two-piece molds, while Urethane usually
                only needs single sided slightly flexible molds, which largely explains the
                ability of these two to get by without high volume sales.

                The more modern approaches uses computer aided design (CAD) programs to define
                the desired form as a solid model file, which is ultimately reformatted to drive
                the process that creates the physical model. This process could be any of a
                wide variety of direct deposition (3D printing) technologies, using plastics,
                metals, ceramics and now even paper. Or a computer driven machining center can
                be used to cut either a master or a mold from sold metal. The advantages of CAD
                are that it can be done by anyone willing to master the tools, on almost any
                computer, and allows thorough inspection of a design prior to manufacture.
                These are a bit deceptive, in that good computer modeling requires mastering a
                skill sit comparable to that needed for good modeling in any other medium. It
                is further deceptive, in that the computer model is not the final product. One
                must further master enough of the details of the chosen manufacturing process to
                ensure that the model can be made. These details will differ for different
                processes, and different materials within a process, and even for different ways
                of using a single model file in a single process.

                So CAD does not offer any panaceas. Even the new 2D photo to 3D model file
                technologies will require experienced editing to generate versions that can be
                manufactured. But the combination of CAD and direct deposition will eventually
                extend our modeling options, much as the introduction of styrene did 50 years
                ago. There are enormous possibilities in this, and quite few people are already
                experimenting with it.

                As for what is currently available, Shapeways seems to be the current largest
                source of model railroad products. They draw on hundreds of individual
                designers, by providing facilities to build anyone's computer modeled concepts,
                with a web based market for designers to sell copies of their work on demand.
                But searching for anything specific on the Shapeways website is currently an
                exercise in terminal frustration. The following designer's shops have most of
                what will interest us, and give good examples of the current state of the art.
                This list is by no means complete, and I encourage anyone who has found useful
                items from other shops to let the rest of us know. At present this shop based
                approach seems the best way to screen out the junk returned by Shapeways' search
                facility.

                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/shapeways.com/shops/Jeevi
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/tebee
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/mynermodels
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/waldbahner
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/koala_creek
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/oahurailway
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/tmw
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/ziadesign
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/MonoModels
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/ing
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/austinrp
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/imagereplicas
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/panamintmodels
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/trains
                http://www.shapeways.com/shops/jlrms

                Shapeways may offer these designer's products in several materials. Their
                Frosted Ultra Detail gives the best reproduction of a model file, but is their
                most expensive plastic. Frosted Detail costs a bit less, and may suffice for
                larger models with little fine detail. These two are apparently Acrylics (i.e.
                Plexiglass), and can be handled as such. White Strong Flexible is tougher,
                apparently a nylon deposited as about 0.005" diameter drops, so HO scale models
                appear to be composed of scale 1/2" pebbles. I consider it wholly unsuitable for
                models, though it should be good for some mechanical applications.

                John Stutz

                On 05/06/2013 02:27 PM, d_rg_br wrote:
                > Mr. Stutz,
                >
                > Thank you for your logical analysis of current 3D printing
                > capabilities. We´re a long way to truly efficient use of this
                > technology with the limiting factor being material preparation
                > and current nozzle capacities. Any printer that has the input capacity
                > and nozzle sizes of interest place them in upper echelon industrial
                > processes and they´re not there yet.
                >
                > Some times I feel like I´m whistling in the wind
                > after 40 years in industrial automation
                >
                > MCG de Oliveira
                >
                >
                >> I have no experience with either.
                >>
                >> The above are really copying processes, and not of much use use for modeling.
                >
                >> John Stutz
                >>
                >
                >
              • d_rg_br
                None of your replies have ever been excessive, something that makes your replies definitive. I´ve been off-shore for so long that I´ve lost the tact to
                Message 7 of 17 , May 8, 2013
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                  None of your replies have ever been excessive, something that makes
                  your replies definitive. I´ve been off-shore for so long that I´ve
                  lost the tact to clearly state my position on many subjects.
                  Thank you so much for your clarity, and in this case it´s far
                  beyond a statement of current realities in 3D printing for HOn3
                  applications.

                  MCG de Oliveira


                  --- In HOn3@yahoogroups.com, John Stutz <John.C.Stutz@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > This may be of general interest.
                  > I expand on a previous reply to MCG.
                  > Perhaps excessively?
                  >

                  > >
                  > >> John Stutz
                • Michael York
                  If you have any doubts as to whether this technology is good enough for HOn3, On3, Nn3, or such models, go look at what people have done! I became a convert
                  Message 8 of 17 , May 8, 2013
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                    If you have any doubts as to whether this technology is good enough for
                    HOn3, On3, Nn3, or such models, go look at what people have done!

                    I became a convert after I saw Eric Cox's fine models...his N-scale items
                    look better than the commercial models alongside them in photos!
                    http://www.shapeways.com/model/694469/r15-n-scale-coal-jimmy-wood-truck-x3.html?li=moreFromDesigner&material=60

                    Or how about HO bicycles?
                    http://www.shapeways.com/model/678603/3x-ho-1-87-old-bicycles.html?li=productBox-search

                    19th century railroad need an N-scale stagecoach for a forced perspective
                    town?
                    http://www.shapeways.com/model/542947/n-scale-stagecoach-3-pack.html?li=productBox-search


                    Please do not confuse home printers such as the Makerbot products with
                    commercial/industrial printers. There is an extra zero on price tag of the
                    later. It is like confusing a butchers knife with a hobby knife. I
                    believe that Shapeways uses a ProJet 3510 for the UD and FUD prints. Most
                    of us use FUD which is UV cured acrylic. The layers are 29 microns thick
                    (1/100" in HO scale) and it has a resolution of 0.1" in HO scale (actually
                    750x890 DPI).

                    As far as software, you may use whatever you like so long as it produces
                    watertight, manifold components. I've used 123Design by Autodesk (don't
                    like it), Blender which is open-source, and good old free and easy Google
                    Sketchup. Solidworks may be easier to get your files ready (I've never
                    tried it, don't know), but the free programs will produce just as nicely
                    detailed parts.

                    This technology isn't, in my opinion, all that great (right now) for the
                    production of HOn3 passenger cars due to costs nor replicating any of your
                    already available D&RGW models. But, it is a game changer for those of us
                    interested in stuff on the roads less traveled and time periods unknown.

                    Michael


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