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The 3D Printing Process

This is a very breif overview of what is needed to 3D Print something. If you have no idea how 3D printing works, this breaks the process into 6 steps. For more information about 3D printing, you can find it at www.3DPrintingNinja.blogspot.com

Tyson James

on 19 August 2014

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Transcript of The 3D Printing Process

2.) Find Models
1.) Pre-Design
3.) Modeling / Design
4.) Print Preparation
5.) Print or use a 3rd Party
Most of the time you can find a model already made online, which you can print or alter. Otherwise you can create a model from scratch. Or even scan a real object into a model.
Print Preparation
Plastic, Steel, Silver, Ceramic...
3D Printing
The Process of
Presented by
Obtain a Model
There is no point to printing something that won't print. It will waste time and money. Therefore it is wise to place your model into a software that can inspect your model for errors. I recommend Autodesk Meshmixer.
The 3D Printing Store
Brigham Young University
Harold B. Lee Library
3D Printing Ninja
A blog where one may learn and master 3D Printing
6.) Finishing Touches
First, be aware of what the printer you are using is capable of doing. The following factors can then be determined:
Most printers can only print small objects within a volume usually smaller than a shoebox. So large objects will have to be printed in parts and put together
Most printers use plastic, however there are many types of printers that use other materials such as ceramic and aluminum.
Printing in Plastic is decently priced, for example, an iphone case may only cost $3. However other materials can be very expensive.
Many printers require supports, which means you will need to orient and design your model so the angles are not to steep to print. Keep this in mind when modeling.
Modeling / Design
If you want to alter the model or create a model from scratch then you will need a software program.

There are many free and commercial software programs in which you can design a model. I highly recommend Blender.

These programs take a little bit of learning, but I also recommend putting the effort to learn at least the basics of modeling. Obviously depending on how complex the object you want to print, the more training you will need.

If you don't want to hassle with it then you can always hire an engineer, animator, or someone who can do the modeling for you.

Inspection Software
Science and Maps Reference Desk
Find Companies Online to Print
Many Local Places are Starting to Carry Printers
Find more in depth information at:
Use a Friend's or Local Store
After the model has been sliced for printing, settings may need to be adjusted on the printer. These include settings such as temperature, speed, shells, rafts, supports, etc.
Printer Settings
Remove extra material such as supports and rafts.
Paint, Sand, Machine to give your object the final touches to impress.
Print it!
One of the common errors that causes problems is when your model has non-manifold geometry.
After the model is checked for errors it then needs to be formatted in a way the printer can read it.
The process is slow and may take several hours. But perfect for printing overnight.
In a nutshell,
that is how
it is done!

This is an example of one site where you can find free models to download. There are many sites which offer free models. The universal format to download is an .stl
Full transcript