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Reptile Snake Skin Pattern 3D Print

How do you get a reptile snake skin appearance in a 3D print? We stumbled onto a cool method!

I was printing a combat robot chassis and stumbled upon this happy accident of a snake / reptile skin effect. To get durability in a bot for the “plastic ant” class, with its 1lb weight limit, and requirement that chassis and weapons must be 3D printed using only PLA, ABS or PETg, I used Chroma Strand Labs INOVA-1800 translucent green 3D printer filament, mainly because it looks cool- Watch for translucent green in Chroma Strand Labs’ value priced INOVA-2008 PETg soon!

3d print of a combat robot chassis in translucent green INOVA-1800 filament and cubic infill.
3d print of a combat robot chassis in translucent green INOVA-1800 filament and cubic infill. I didn’t start out to have it look like a snake- the pupils in the engraved eyes were originally round, but when I saw another print of the wheel skirts and noticed the reptile pattern, I hopped back in Fusion 360 and quickly changed them to snake eyes!

The LulzBot Mini made a beautiful print, and the build volume was “just right” for a plastic ant. A good rule of thumb- If you need a LulzBot TAZ‘s build volume, your ant is going to be too heavy (ask me how I know..).

 

Angle view to show infill pattern
Angle view to show infill pattern

I created the model in Autodesk Fusion 360 (free for maker / student / non-commercial use!!) which has been an easy to use yet staggeringly powerful 3D modeling tool for quickly iterating through designs. The cloud sync makes it a snap to move between computers!

Side view- check out those nice unsupported overhangs!
Side view- check out those nice unsupported overhangs!

The key to is the infill pattern. I was experimenting with different infill patterns in the new CURA 2 LulzBot Edition Alpha and chose cubic for it’s strength. By happy accident, the combination of the translucent green INOVA-1800 and cubic infill yielded this cool pattern!  Pictured don’t really do it justice as the surface is shiny, and the pattern shifts as it catches the light.

 

Rear view. The engraved text came out pretty well!
Rear view. The engraved text came out pretty well!

We have free shipping on Chroma Strand Labs filement, buy some INOVA-1800 today and show us what kind of reptile prints you come up with!

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Print your own chair feet!

The Problem: Kitchen chairs!

Our kitchen chairs were what my Granny would have called, catywompus!  The plastic feet inserts broke over the years , but when we thought we would just add new ones, we discovered they were custom to the chair.   After much searching online, I found a whole lot of nothing.  I decided to save myself the hassle and hand Jamie a chair foot so that he could draw up a design in Tinkercad!  A couple of days later he handed me back a 3D printed chair foot, very similar to the one I originally gave him!

It snapped in easy peasy!   Jamie printed off enough for the rest of the chairs and ten minutes of install later our chairs were no longer ‘catywompus’.   Easiest home improvement/fix up ever!!  I am slowly discovering that having a 3D printer comes in quite handy for around the house stuff and making parts that you may otherwise have to have custom-made.   That, and it’s just a lot of fun!!

How To:
For this project Jamie used a Lulzbot Mini 3D Printer and black ABS filament.  At first we considered using a flexible filament called Ninja Flex, but decided against it.  I was concerned that with it being flexible and sort of ‘grabby’ for lack of a better description, that it would be difficult to move across the hardwood floors.  The ABS is a tough and smoother filament and moved easily on the floor, although in the end I’m not sure if that mattered because I put furniture sliders on top of the chair feet.

If you have broken things around your house or little broken parts that are difficult to come by, you may  be able to design a replacement yourself and 3D print it, just as we did these chair feet.

Chair foot insert replacement 3d print (4) Chair foot insert replacement 3d print (3) Chair foot insert replacement 3d print (1) Chair foot insert replacement 3d print (2)

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Laser cat!

Fun with 3D printing, because who doesn’t need a laser cat?!  This file can be found at Thingiverse  The original laser cat looks much like the one below, but as 3D Printing goes there is always a lot of fun to be had with tinkering around with designs!  Someone added lasers to the poor laser’less cat here

This was printed on a Lulzbot Mini!  Available for sale HERE!!

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lasercat_lasers_preview_featured

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PINK LULZBOT MINI PROJECT

Work continues on the build of a pink Lulzbot Mini 3D printer. Nearly all the parts are printed, and the chassis has been refinished.
Because of Lulzbot’s open source approach, you own your printer, and you can build modify, experiment  and repair it yourself!
If you’d like to DIY, ItWorks 3D Print can help you with the Lulzbot Mini Parts you need.

Jodi here! I know it seems like an absurd amount of pink and you are correct!  It really is a little overboard, but I love it! I have four boys, five if you include Jamie, so a girls gotta mix in a little bit of pink here and there! It is however doubtful that the pink will deter any of them from using my printer. 😉

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Printing the last of the parts. The filament arm was printed on the TAZ 5 as it’s too big for the Mini to print. The rest of the parts can be printed on the Mini.

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Cerakote looks like it will work as a durable over-finish on the chassis. We’re using “prison pink” Thanks to Dustin of the hot new local filament manufacturerChroma Strand Labs for this finish. Look for Chroma Strand’s new Inova filament on our site ItWorks3D

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Even the bed plate is getting refinished. Now for much re-tapping and uncoating the areas that need to make electrical contact for the Mini’s auto-leveling system. The Ninjaflex bed corners will probably be done in white with the new Mini Flexistruder V2IMG_20160412_152516 IMG_20160412_152542