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    • Mike

      PhotoBucket are no longer permitting 3rd party hosting   01/07/17

      As most of you are now painfully aware, Photobucket (PB) are stopping/have stopped allowing their members to link their accumulated years of photos into forums and the like, which they call 3rd party linking.  You can give them a non-refundable $399 a year to allow links, but I doubt that many will be rushing to take them up on that offer.  If you've previously paid them for the Pro account, it looks like you've got until your renewal to find another place to host your files, but you too will be subject to this ban unless you fork over a lot of cash.   PB seem to be making a concerted move to another type of customer, having been the butt of much displeasure over the years of a constantly worsening user interface, sloth and advertising pop-ups, with the result that they clearly don't give a hoot about the free members anymore.  If you don't have web space included in your internet package, you need to start looking for another photo host, but choose carefully, as some may follow suit and ditch their "free" members at some point.  The lesson there is keep local backups on your hard drive of everything you upload, so you can walk away if the same thing happens.   There's a thread on the subject here, so please use that to curse them, look for solutions or generall grouse about their mental capacity.   Not a nice situation for the forum users that hosted all their photos there, and there will now be a host of useless threads that relied heavily on photos from PB, but as there's not much we can do other than petition for a more equitable solution, I suggest we make the best of what we have and move on.  One thing is for certain.  It won't win them any friends, but they may not care at this point.    Mike.
Nutsabout

3D printing, anyone tried it?

38 posts in this topic

I do not think that printers with the resolution we require for out modelling needs will become cheap household items anytime soon because of several reasons:

 - high precision mechanical components and very high standard of assembly quality required

 - size of the machine (this can probably come down with miniaturisation of components, but you just have to have certain bulk of machine to achieve a reasonable build volume)

 - no matter how "clean" the machine seems to be, you have to handle materials like resins, waxes, hardeners and the like somehow, somewhere. This is not a "bedroom" operation

 - most importantly: demand. Consumer electronics like computers, phones, TV screens have markets of potentially billions of people. This will reduce prices by mass production. But 3D printers? They will spread somewhat to a point where most, if not all, manufacturing or design companies will have and use one (or more), and that will mainly drive improvements in the printers' performance. But in "normal", private households? In numbers sufficient to reduce prices by at least a factor 10? I really doubt that. What would be the purpose? Would you go and print out a spoon if you're short of a clean one for dinner? For people engaged in arts and craft like us or people into jewellery etc. I'd say yes, probably, but I don't think prices will be anywhere near that of your typical laser or inkjet printer.

For now, I'm just hoping that the resolution and surface fidelity of printers will improve further as for now, I have yet to see a 3D printed part that is good enough to compete with a hand-finished master. My masters are printed on state-of-the-art Envisiontec and Asiga machines and I always have to put in hours and hours of micro-sanding and priming to remove the steps on curved surfaces.

 

Jeffrey

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19 minutes ago, JeffreyK said:

 - most importantly: demand. Consumer electronics like computers, phones, TV screens have markets of potentially billions of people. This will reduce prices by mass production. But 3D printers? 

 

quote-i-think-there-is-a-world-market-fo

 

Personally I see it may be needed for a lot of stuff. Just think - how many plastic things do you have at home?

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When I posed the question about 3D printers I worried I was asking a stupid question, bit it seems to have sparked quite a discussion.

Quality and price are big factors, but the main issue as I see it is the ability to use the CAD software to make new designs.

If these printers do become mainstream they may help combat waste, how many thingamajigs are thrown out because the little plastic clipy thing has fallen off?  Just make a new one.      

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Actually I acquired one cheaply just before Christmas off a colleague. It was a steal as he's done all the setting up. I've only printed in PLA and it produces stuff slowly with a finish that should sand and paint up OK. I charged in and started printing out parts for a model before I realized some parts were too big for the printer bit I'm finding ways to trim them down. It's a slow process to fettle the parts and get them printed but I've started so I'll finish. 

 

I can knock up simple shapes myself to print out - there are several free CAD and mesh modelling programs out there which can generate wavefront .obj files which it will accept.I think it can generate accurate shapes but the finish needs working on and I haven't tried any surface detailing yet.

 

It was originally thought that you didn't need a heated base plate to print in PLA but it does distort very easily if you haven't. I have one coming but it's in the clutches of Parcel Farce and they are to issue me with a customs ransom note somehow soon.

small_zpsl0rpw37j.jpg

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Hi Bonsai,

 

It's great to see you using your own printer, what size are the pieces you are printing? they look quite large, I was considering trying to print accessories for say 1/35 scale so fine detail would be important. 

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Regarding being able to download files from Tamiya and printing them in the future, I wouldn't be so optimistic. Yes, all kind of electronic devices are now much cheaper than they used to be but these devices don't require the user to do much, Want to use an Ipod ? Connect to the web, download some music and you're ready. Much easier than buying several LPs, transferring the favourite songs on a tape and insert this into your tape reader as people had to do when I was a teenager.

With a plastic kit we're talking downloading a set of 3d files, setting the printer, loading the material and printing. In today's world it's just order the kit from your favourite supplier and wait for it to arrive home. Where's the advantage of a 3d printer ?

There's also a potential financial problem: I can buy kits for a tenner or less, how much would the same kit cost if I print this at home ? I'd have to buy the 3d files (although no doubt these would also be available from the usual Russian or Chinese sites where books in pdf format are easily available), use materials that are not the cheapest, consider that I may have a few aborted printing runs, keep in mind the excess materials that 3d printing require... would it actually be cheaper than buying a kit already made in its box with all the parts, decals and instructions included?

There are also a number of technical issues: the polistyrene used in our kits is a great material for this hobby! It's durable, easy to work with, takes glue very well. The materials used by 3d printers are not always as durable and can be harder to glue. Reason why aftermarket companies use the printers to make the masters to cast the parts in resin and don't sell 3d printed parts directly

I often compare the possible future use of 3d models with home printed decals: a well known artist has made available markings for home printing a while ago, yet how many actually printed these markings ? There was a brand of printers that could print white at a moderate cost, modellers bought so many of these that the company stopped production because they didn't make money... Today the only printers printing white are aimed at a totally different market and modellers still happily buy aftermarket sheets.

Mind, I'm not saying that 3d printing is not going to change the hobby, it already has ! But will likely remain a tool for the manufacturers and a small number of enterprising individuals.

 

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I don't want to go off topic but can anyone advise on 3D scanning?

 

I just asked elsewhere (The Spadgent's thread on his 1/24 Bf-109, where some nice parts have been printed), but here seems better.

 

Here is the situation, and I think others will have similar kits with major parts missing:

 

I have an Avro Avian resin kit in 1/72 by the late, wonderful Mr. Dujin. I have lost one whole fuselage half.

 

Are there 'scanning' technologies to scan a part and then print a copy?

 

If so, can mirror images be made in the software? Could I scan my port fuselage side, use the software to create a mirror image starboard side, and print that starboard side out?

 

That would be superb. I have other kits with one half of one wing missing (upper or lower), one wheel missing etc. This scanning possibility interests me as much as the printing. Does it exist?

 

All I can find with Googling is that plans have to be created. This would be reallly hard for eg an Avro Avian fuselage half. For me. :dunce: 

 

Apologies for my lack of knowledge here.

 

Best regards

TonyT

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The technology definitely exists, but as with printing, any serious application requires expensive kit so the job won't be cheap. What's more, a 3D scan will produce a very "noisy" set of data, a so called point cloud which is a bit of a handful to handle. Scanning companies can tidy up the points (eliminate lots of "stray" points etc.) and and connect them up to form a polygon mesh, which is the basis for your surfaces.

However, in order to manufacture anything useful from this, you'd better reverse-engineer the scan mesh into something a lot cleaner and simpler, using CAD software and this is not an easy job.

So yes, it can be done, but it's not as simple as photocopying and it will cost a bit of money as well...

 

J

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6 hours ago, Nutsabout said:

Hi Bonsai,

 

It's great to see you using your own printer, what size are the pieces you are printing? they look quite large, I was considering trying to print accessories for say 1/35 scale so fine detail would be important. 

The printer has a 15cm cube area to print in but so far it has issues getting above about 10cms before something happens - when I am out of the room of course. That nosecone is 11cms. I think the reel fouls the drive at height and I'm going to do a stand alone reel holder. Fortunately the printer preparing code lets me sink components through the table so I can finish such interrupted prints. I believe it is possible to extend the table laterally so longer pieces can be done but it does take a long time to print. There should be no reason why the whole printer concept cannot be scaled up. You just need the patience to print it out.

 

It does do detail but how much and how well I have yet to find out. i'll be doing some test pieces but if you have any test subjects I'm willing to try them for you. I think it can be relied upon to do the basic shapes well but you would have to see to the surface finish and detailing yourself. In 1/35 it might do oil drums and crates etc but not small delicate stuff like sign posts etc. Maybe a concrete bunker building? Currently layer thickness is 0.1cm and it is visible as you can see in the photos. You can get a smoother finish with ABS - like Lego plastic but it smells bad and the smooth finish involves acetone fumes so not for the home.

 

Another trick is to cast in aluminium from PLA master using the lost wax process. It sort of makes you think "Oooo!" and then "Erm,,,,"

 

Due to the warping the model bits I have done so far will need some filling but I have many many years of doing that.

 

I have enjoyed messing with it and it's cool to make something and get it printed but then find it's wrong and doing it again. i made a case for a Raspberry Pi for a colleague over Christmas and the stress was very high at times.

 

I can see this getting better and more practical and in the end model work may loose it's value when it can be just printed out just like music, films, books etc. 

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There definitely are 3D printers than can create parts as good as any injection moulding stuff, but they aren't in the 'home' league.

 

The pics below are of printed parts I used as masters to mould my own resin parts for my scratch built Ferrari 250 GTO in 1/8 scale.

The cost of the printed masters would put the majority here off, as I could have bought a Pocher kit for far less.

However, I can use my rubber moulds to create as many engines as I wish for future projects.

Every part in the finished engine (apart from wires, tubes, bolts etc) is printed.

For my money, I got around 50 parts but it took nearly 3 months to get them as the work was done 'between jobs' to keep the cost 'down'.

 

The 3D master for my Lister Jaguar body shell was £500. 

Ouch, - but worth it for what you get in the end.

 

Both build threads - the Lister and the Ferrari - are here somewhere.

 

Roy.

 

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P1012145_zpswxbyiazb.jpg

P1012226_zpsbmloajmd.jpg

P1012975_zpskec7nxhp.jpg

 

 

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On 13/01/2017 at 5:06 PM, roymattblack said:

There definitely are 3D printers than can create parts as good as any injection moulding stuff, but they aren't in the 'home' league.

Thanks Roy,

Your engines are very impressive, but as you say quality costs. Can I ask, did you  do the CAD work yourself? And if so how?

Ian..

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There's a WIP in armour, using professionally printed parts. The modeller (Wogga) has designed most of the parts himself using CAD software, but bought an off-the-shelf 3D plan for a jerry can. Quality of the parts is stunning, but definitely not home printer stuff:

 

Long Job - FV439 Royal Signals Radio Relay with some 3d Printing

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I just printed my first model last week.  I printed a 1/72 scale sci fi fighter for about $26. Which was a lot less than a resin model about the same size.  I think it will revolutionize scratch building, but I don't Airfix or Taimiya have anything to worry about yet.

 

But there's some really cool stuff out there. For example I need a few 1/144 scale Swifts for my gaming group.  There are none available anywhere.  I contacted a guy on shapeways who had a 1/285 scale Swift.  After a few emails he upscaled it for me with a price tag of $9 each. Not bad. The quality may not be Hasagawa but it's a starting point for detailing. 

Edited by Thud4444
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