Re: 3D printing...some random thoughts

 

Hi Randy...
You say that you have totally transitioned to 3D printing... I've been thinking about that and wonder what kind of tools you use that you consider essential.  For example...in my shop I consider a drill press, a scroll saw, a disk sander, and a bandsaw essential.  Many small tools, different glues and fasteners...I could go on and on.
What, in your 3D printing shop, do you consider essential?  
And a side question...is there dust?  In my shop wood dust is a factor that I need to consider.  In a 3D printing environment is there dust, or odor?
Thanks
-Jim-

On Mon, 10 Feb 2020 at 15:39, Randy <rglissmann@...> wrote:
As an old (67) woodworker I had some initial reservations about both CNC and 3D printing. I have great respect for the craftsmen that can create wood objects that I don't have the talent nor patience to make. Also being an engineer, I'm intrigued by technology and  while some may consider it a shortcut, these TOOLs allow me to create things, very challenging things, that I would probably give up on. Anyway, I got tired of wood dust and totally transitioned to 3D printing. I'm willing to accept the scorn of the purests, but for most people, they just appreciate the creative effort in my designs. I airbrush my work so the material, plastic vs. wood, is immaterial. To reiterate, I'm in awe of someone who can create a 40 tooth gear by hand.

There are two main types of 3D printers: cartesian and delta. A cartesian printer moves the base in the X and Y directions create the object. The plastic extruder moves up in the Z direction as layers of plastic are layer on. A delta printer has a fixed base and the extruder dances around in the X, Y, and Z directions. I've never seen a delta and that may be because they are definitely less popular than cartesian. I'm not saying they are inferior, but I do think that both the manufacturer and community support is less than cartesian. I own an Ender 3 cartesian printer. It is a simple $200 printer that works very well. I have added a few well documented tune-ups that makes it very reliable. I can discuss these if there is interest.

Regarding filaments, I've tried different types of plastic but have always return to PLA, the most commonly used printing material. For a stationary object without environmental temperature and humidity stress, it works just fine. I use Hatchbox white PLA. I have found that the manufacturer of the filament does make a difference. For design software, I use Fusion 360. This software is SO amazing. For a hobbyist, using it is free. This is industrial-strength software, so don't expect to be productive overnight. 

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