3D Printers and Protective Parts?

Discussion in 'Shiny Things' started by dvebe9, Mar 28, 2013.

  1. JRWooden

    JRWooden Long timer

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    garandman:
    If you author that blog post ... please post a link to it here, or PM me with it!

    :clap
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  2. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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  3. idiotsecant

    idiotsecant n00b

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    I constructed an additive (as opposed to sintering type) DIY 3d printer some years ago before they were the new "en vogue". The technology is cool, and has many applications, but I sure wouldn't count making structural or crash protection motorcycle parts as one of them. I would definitely use it to fab up something like a custom instrument panel, but the construction method means that it has sometimes unpredictable stress/strain characteristics- kind of like composite materials.
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  4. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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    Full disclosure, I work for a Stratasys dealer so take anything I say as venal and self-serving. :evil

    The DIY systems have minimal strength between the layers. They also tend to be used at layers of around 0.020" versus 0.005 to 0.010" for commercial extrusion systems, and Uv photoplymer systems but down layers measure in microns.

    The commercial systems have nearly the same properties in all orientations. But I haven't seen many "structural" plastic parts on motorcycles - aluminum machined parts, castings or steel weldments are more cost-effective, easier to repair, and the design science is more developed.

    Here's the kind of part that makes sense. I needed a flag base to hold a flag staff on my Triumph for when I ride with the Patriot Guard Riders. None are made. I took some measurements and designed an upper and lower base to clamp around the rear luggage rack. This was the first version, which worked.
    [​IMG]

    I was worried about the mount being strong enough, so I added a rib down the middle.This is the third design iteration, which I "wrapped" around the bracket for a lower profile.
    [​IMG]

    These parts were made for around $12 worth of materials, in a couple of hours. An aluminum part would have been stronger: but it would have required programming, and then multiple setups on a CNC mill, or some skilled manual machining. The worldwide market for Tiger 1050 flag brackets is probably 3-5 units, so it works for 3DP, but not really anything else.
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  5. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    I do transportation research.
    We put equipment on to vehicles using mounts made of SLA.

    Here's my experience. When designed right for the application the parts work. But they are fragile much like mounting bosses on abs bodywork. They are perfect for small camera and sensor mounts or for boxes that hold electronics.

    But for series production, mill/printer time is currently cost prohibitive.

    You need to have or know someone with solid cad chops to make decent parts.
    #25
  6. Riot

    Riot Tiger Rider

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  7. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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    Prosthetic limbs.
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/fir5HI0Gwrc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
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  8. dvebe9

    dvebe9 Blarg Honk

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    Thanks, just wanting to see if people have been playing around with it.

    I have a friend who is running a small side business with several 3D printers, mainly helping small engineering companies with prototypes and oddly enough a number of art students with sculpting.

    I want to try making some smaller bits e.g. bracket for a GPS, so was interested to see who is doing what.
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  9. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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    Just as an industry comment, this Jingle created quite a controversy - some people in and out of the company thought it was the corniest thing ever, while others liked it. The controversy got more attention than the jingle. This video was apparently removed for a time, then put back. Note that votes and comments have been disabled.

    Beware - you can't unhear what you hear! SolidSmack article.

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/lRC9HfBJGOc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
    #29
  10. Ck622

    Ck622 Adventurer

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    Here is another option for low volume parts: http://www.protolabs.com/

    A few guys I work with have had good luck with them. I typically,use sla or sls for a part or two.
    #30
  11. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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    pm sent.
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  12. HighTechCoonass

    HighTechCoonass Living the Dream....

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    our future will be amazing... soon our part supplier will make them at the counter with these - even metal!
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  13. Merfman

    Merfman Trustin' my cape...

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  14. ArmyStrong

    ArmyStrong 6F

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    e-NABLE is making prosthetics for kids with 3D printers. Prosthetics for kids in titanium (longest lasting/strongest) is $10,000 plus. Typically kids, since they quickly outgrow prosthetics, get a hook or stump and then hope when fully grown they can afford one. Now..useing 3D technology, one can be made for ~100 bucks..and the founder pays and delivers most for free. Holding up well based on reports. Pretty cool.
    #34
  15. JRWooden

    JRWooden Long timer

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    That's totally awesome!
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  16. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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    Here is the flag mount I made for the rack on a Triumph Tiger 1050 two years ago. It's clamped together and the flag staff goes in the hole for Patriot Guard missions. I usually furl the flag on the highway but this has held up to plenty of use.

    We can make parts out of Nylon or ULTEM if you need chemical resistance, and in one to two years we should have glass fiber or carbon fiber reinforced materials.
    [​IMG]
    #36
  17. Lobby

    Lobby Viel Spass, Vato!

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    Wow.
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  18. kohburn

    kohburn Been here awhile

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    you can also print molds and cast fiber reinforced composites form them.
    I work with a guy whose degree focus was in designing for additive manufacturing and has a few machines at home. He's got some really good insight into why a lot of the amature parts are so weak and its not so much the material or even the machine as how the software is tuned.

    I'm seriously contemplating putting one together to work in combination with my cnc mill and vacuum infusion casting equipment.
    #38
  19. Cumminsman76

    Cumminsman76 befuddled

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    I worked at a medical place and we were designing a tool and one of the hand pieces were printed from titanium. I think it was 80 percent the strength of billit titanium and I only had to thread a few holes on it. Machining the part would be stupidly complex and way more expensive than it already was.
    #39
  20. garandman

    garandman Wandering Minstrel

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    The maker-grade machines usually default to a couple of wall layers and very low "infill": the % of the interior of the part that is filled. Those numbers are set to 10-30% by default. Those systems are cheap, but they don't have heated build chambers, don't have very precise positioning, and have relatively slow feed rates. And PLA is a good model material but not very good for functional parts.

    By contrast even the least expensive pro printer builds with three or more shell layers and is about 70% filled at lowest. Many parts are built at over 90% density or even solid, and they are using ABS.

    Rally and race car builders often build casting patterns or molds for FRP layup. The quest for fiber-reinforced high temp materials is driven by their desire to be able to produce parts directly.

    We went to a presentation by ProCar on 3DP for the Mini rally car, and we know others are using it.
    #40