Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.


2401 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 702

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

Topic # 152161 18-Sep-2014 00:11
One person supports this post
Send private message

I've wanted a 3D printer for ages, and splashed out on a budget model last week.  I picked the XYZprinting da Vinci 1.0 which from some sources is being sold in NZ under the Oki brand, though curiously mine arrived from one of those sources with the original XYZprinting branding on the box and the unit.  The da Vinci is cheaper because they expect you to buy their custom-sized ABS plastic refills which are more expensive than some others options, but a little Googling suggests there are ways to refill them yourself.  One of the key reasons I chose this model over other budget models is that it has a relatively large 20x20x20cm build area.  http://www.xyzprinting.co.nz/ has more details.

Loving it so far.  Have printed a dozen items from www.thingiverse.com for the kids while tinkering.  The da Vinci comes with printing software that lets you load an object and move/scale it prior to printing.  It does not come with design software.

3D printers still seem to be at the "bleeding-edge / early adopters" stage.  It works pretty well and is simple to operate, but is far from idiot-proof in terms of how your design will actually come out.  A bit of trial and error will quickly establish what works an what you need to prepare to make your prints successful.  My 3D graveyard consists of several sad-looking Eiffel Towers, and even my 4th attempt (approximately my 10th print) had issues.

I had a practical use for it this week when wanting a custom-made bracket for a slim PC and an external DVD drive to sit nicely together by my TV.  5 minutes research suggested TinkerCAD and Sketchup were commonly used.  I've not tried TinkerCAD yet.  Sketchup was easy to install and I got going with it pretty easily, figuring I would learn as I went.  2 hours later after quite a bit of trial and error I had the bracket designed and ready to print.  I started the print and went to bed.  The finished result in the morning (after a 2-3 hour print) was disappointing due to some conversion issues (you need to export from Sketchup to the common .STL format) and my choice of print quality settings.  Some bits snapped off far too easily.

Tonight I watched Sketchup's introduction videos, and came out with many valuable tips.  I redesigned the bracket from scratch in 30 minutes, largely because I now knew how to create components, group them together, and copy components instead of having to draw each bit individually.  I also paid a lot more attention to the print quality (etc) settings.  Version 2.1 will take 4-5 hours to print.  I'll post an update tomorrow, but I'm pretty confident this time. :)




"4 wheels move the body.  2 wheels move the soul."

“Don't believe anything you read on the net. Except this. Well, including this, I suppose.” Douglas Adams

Create new topic
3267 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 77

Trusted

  Reply # 1131915 19-Sep-2014 06:51
Send private message

At my son's intermediate school they just got a 3D printer in their class.  I'll be interested in how it goes for you as I have to help my son find a suitable application to use at home.  The school recommended TinkerCAD, however we will not install it for him as he does not meet the T&C (I know I'm a bit anal about the fact he is 12 and not 13, but it is about teaching him to follow the law).  We installed SketchUp, but the learning curve might be a bit steep for him as he just wants to draw stuff like you do in SPORE https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spore_Creature_Creator.




You can never have enough Volvos!




2401 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 702

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1131974 19-Sep-2014 09:56
Send private message

Version 2 came out much stronger.  :)  The quality was far from smooth (I'll need to lightly sand some areas).  Where the nozzle keeps going around, the result is pretty good quality.  Where the nozzle finishes one area and stops squirting before moving to another area and restarting, there are numerous 'tails' of plastic.  Part of the design had some bridge-like structural features which requires the printer to put a support structure underneath.  When breaking away the support material, the edges need to be sanded to give a smooth result.

Unfortunately it will be quite some time (if at all) before we can get a smooth finish from 3D printers.  I guess squirting dots of plastic is a little more challenging than squirting dots of liquid ink onto a page, and there may be physical limitations on how small the plastic dots can be.

Re software, it will probably be a while before I get to playing with something else.  The 30 minutes of Sketchup introduction videos was invaluable.  I'm not sure any CAD software would be ideal for creating creatures as they are more about lines and angles and blocks than torsos and legs.  It would be do-able, but much more time consuming I would think.

I've just looked at the Creature Creator software - very cool and at only $10 I'll trial it before probably grabbing a copy for my kids to have a go with.  

Your point about following the law is absolutely valid and is an excellent lesson, and could be the subject of significant debate in future I'm sure in regards to where there is acceptable risk in putting a toe over the line.  In my case for the younger ones, I'll accept the license agreement and take on the responsibility for their use.  I'm confident the specified age is for butt-covering legalese reasons rather than real risks (including risks of nightmares for the littlies from the created creatures) to any of the parties.




"4 wheels move the body.  2 wheels move the soul."

“Don't believe anything you read on the net. Except this. Well, including this, I suppose.” Douglas Adams

3267 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 77

Trusted

  Reply # 1132866 20-Sep-2014 19:34
Send private message

For work we are planning on getting a Makerbot 2X.  It does 2 materials at the same time, and the second material is water soluble used for support structures so you just wash it away instead of having to break it off and sanding it down.  My wife is a mechanical engineer (we work at the same company) and will be great when we get to play with making stuff.

The kids loved SPORE when they were smaller, and there is a company you send the files to and they print the model for you.  But a bit expensive and we want to print it ourselves.  And at my son's school the teacher wants to print stuff, anything, because they got a new toy.  Thus looking for software he can easily use to print it himself.




You can never have enough Volvos!




2401 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 702

Trusted
Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1133429 22-Sep-2014 09:48
Send private message

Niel: It does 2 materials at the same time, and the second material is water soluble used for support structures so you just wash it away instead of having to break it off and sanding it down.

Now that is an excellent idea - never heard it before.  There is a version 2.0 da Vinci model coming out that will have dual extruders.  It would be nice to think they will have the soluble support material available as an option.  There is also a 2.1 option coming, where the .1 denotes it has a built in 3D scanner (15x15x15cm scan area).  I can't justify $2000+, but might be able to swing $1000-$1200 particularly if a scanner is included.




"4 wheels move the body.  2 wheels move the soul."

“Don't believe anything you read on the net. Except this. Well, including this, I suppose.” Douglas Adams

3267 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 77

Trusted

  Reply # 1134798 23-Sep-2014 18:58
Send private message

For work my wife (mechanical engineer) is getting the scanner option, dealing direct with the importer and including supplies a package deal is ~$4k.  Not sure if it is including or excluding GST, would think it is excluding, but does include lots of supplies.




You can never have enough Volvos!


Create new topic

Twitter »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





News »

Hawaiki Transpacific cable ready-for-service
Posted 20-Jul-2018 11:29


Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central launches
Posted 10-Jul-2018 10:40


Spark completes first milestone in voice platform upgrade
Posted 10-Jul-2018 09:36


Microsoft ices heated developers
Posted 6-Jul-2018 20:16


PB Technologies charged for its extended warranties and warned for bait advertising
Posted 3-Jul-2018 15:45


Almost 20,000 people claim credits from Spark
Posted 29-Jun-2018 10:40


Cove sells NZ's first insurance policy via chatbot
Posted 25-Jun-2018 10:04


N4L helping TAKA Trust bridge the digital divide for Lower Hutt students
Posted 18-Jun-2018 13:08


Winners Announced for 2018 CIO Awards
Posted 18-Jun-2018 13:03


Logitech Rally sets new standard for USB-connected video conference cameras
Posted 18-Jun-2018 09:27


Russell Stanners steps down as Vodafone NZ CEO
Posted 12-Jun-2018 09:13


Intergen recognised as 2018 Microsoft Country Partner of the Year for New Zealand
Posted 12-Jun-2018 08:00


Finalists Announced For Microsoft NZ Partner Awards
Posted 6-Jun-2018 15:12


Vocus Group and Vodafone announce joint venture to accelerate fibre innovation
Posted 5-Jun-2018 10:52


Kogan.com to launch Kogan Mobile in New Zealand
Posted 4-Jun-2018 14:34



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.