Monday, September 5, 2011

3D Printing of Ikea Lamp Stand

I have been reading on 3D printing briefly and got interested in the possibilities it opens up in a home shop environment. From my little understand of how this works, this an additive method of create parts (my metal working machines are subtractive as in they remove materials to form the required geometries). Plastic filaments are melted and squeezed out of a nozzle to form parts layer by later. The structure is basically a 3-axis stage that controls the positioning of the nozzle. Frankly, that's all I know or can understand.

I bumped into a gentleman, Mr TK Ng, at Mike's shop. He was buying the Sherline lathe and mill when I met him. We chatted and learnt that he owns the Makerbot's Thing-O-matic 3D printer. Cool!!!

This was what he printed:

This is some kind of a space fighter from some movies.

I'm interested to get a unit of the printer myself upon considering what can be printed within it's 120mm x 120mm x 10mm stage. Not an easy decision as I've also committed to purchase the Proxxon PD400.

To see the usability of the parts a 3D printer produces, I ask TK if he can help print a lamp stand for the Ikea lamp I have. He kindly agreed. This is the STL file I sent him:

The part measures 49mm x 49mm and has a height of about 50mm.

Very quickly, he sent me these:

Another view:

From the bottom:

From the side, you can see the angled wall also printed per the STL:

What amazed me is the capturing of even the fillets.

TK said that the print job took him about an hour and a half. Setting up took another 15 minutes (generate GCode, calibration etc).

I'll try to pick up the printed part from him and will post a pix of it in use.

Now, the Proxxon lathe has a lead time of 12 weeks while the 3D printer about 5 weeks. Maybe I should get one to play with and start making some useful household stuff to justify it's present in my shop... lol... Mike, when you're ready...

I would like to thank TK for the print. Will be troubling you when one magically appear in my shop.

I need more space...

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


metalAddict said...

Wow, a reprap printer seems a very nice project. If I didn't had so many pending projects...

Anonymous said...

I am planning on mounting a 3d printing head on a sherline cnc milling machine

Wongster said...

Hello name?

Do keep us posted on your progress. I thought about that but can't imagine my Sherline zipping around at that kind of speed. If success it will be very rigid for this application.