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Old 04-08-2015, 11:20 AM   #1
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Build your own bits with a 3D printer

You all know how tough the sun can be on plastic parts, so when the window latch broke in two on the "escape" window on my RV I was able to recreate it and print a new one on my 3D printer. Total cost about 25 cents. What would a new window cost??!!

Looking for other things to break now, so I can make more of my own parts.

Anyone need a latch like this? I can make it for you.

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Old 04-08-2015, 11:26 AM   #2
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Geez Louise! I've been looking for a reason to invest in a 3D printer. Looks like I'll have to break something of my wife's so she'll see the value...
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:41 AM   #3
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Geez Louise! I've been looking for a reason to invest in a 3D printer. Looks like I'll have to break something of my wife's so she'll see the value...
LOL! I bet there will be a rash of broken stuff and the 3D market will skyrocket now! LOL Better go buy some stock.
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:42 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Gary the Wombat View Post
You all know how tough the sun can be on plastic parts, so when the window latch broke in two on the "escape" window on my RV I was able to recreate it and print a new one on my 3D printer. Total cost about 25 cents. What would a new window cost??!!

Looking for other things to break now, so I can make more of my own parts.

Anyone need a latch like this? I can make it for you.

How did you design it, did you have to use a cad program?
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:53 AM   #5
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Can you print a hydraulic fan assembly for a Cummins side radiator chassis?
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:54 AM   #6
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It took a few steps because of the curved shape which has to be accurate for the latch to work.
1. Scan the broken pieces to get the shape
2. Outline in Adobe Illustrator and save file as an .svg file
3. import .svg file into Autodesk 123D Design (a free program)
4. Extrude shape, add handle, and export as an .stl file which the printer uses

That is a lot of steps, but was actually very easy. The whole process only took about 30 minutes, but I am a computer geek. 123D Design is very easy to use if you only need "primitive" shapes like circles, rectangles etc. However for this latch I needed to recreate a more complex shape.
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:56 AM   #7
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I need new tires.......
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:57 AM   #8
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Can you print a hydraulic fan assembly for a Cummins side radiator chassis?
Each printer varies, but the biggest shape I can print in one piece is 7" x 7" x 7". Over that and you have to print in pieces and glue/screw together.

Heck, given enough time I could print you a whole new motorhome!
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:59 AM   #9
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I need new tires.......
I think the ride would be a little rough, but at least you wouldn't get any more flats.
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Old 04-08-2015, 12:03 PM   #10
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I think you just created yourself a new business.
I am going to send you a friend request if you don't mind so I don't lose track of you
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Old 04-08-2015, 12:07 PM   #11
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Would you please print me a 3D printer?
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Old 04-08-2015, 12:21 PM   #12
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Would you please print me a 3D printer?
Weirdly enough, there are plans available on the internet to do just that! But it's a lot easier just to buy one. I have an XYZPrinting DaVinci 1.0 that my son gave me for Christmas. They only cost around $450.
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Old 04-08-2015, 01:17 PM   #13
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I think there are services you can send your 123D output to that will make the part out of a material of your choice. In case you don't want to invest in a printer
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Old 04-08-2015, 02:39 PM   #14
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$450.00??????????????? I'll have to start looking at them today for that much.
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Old 04-08-2015, 03:25 PM   #15
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How much is the medium? I'm sure the profit made on "regular" printers is in selling ink refills, not the printer.
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:09 PM   #16
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How much is the medium? I'm sure the profit made on "regular" printers is in selling ink refills, not the printer.
Actually, the cost of the filament is not too bad. A 250 meter roll is about $30. The material for the latch in the photo only came to about 25 cents. The biggest thing I have printed, a complete Sig Sauer lower frame and grips, only cost about $3.
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:48 PM   #17
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That is very cool... Nice job.
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Old 04-09-2015, 06:29 AM   #18
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So as of now the latch has really cost $450.25. Need to build some more things to average the cost down some.

I would still love to have one.
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Old 04-09-2015, 07:01 AM   #19
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Can you print a hydraulic fan assembly for a Cummins side radiator chassis?
I've seen a demo of a 3D printer that could easily do that. It was being used for aircraft repairing of parts (prototyping of replacement parts). Of course it costs $1M but it'll print pretty much any kind of metal as it fuses it while printing utilizing a 10k volt laser The entire printer compartment maintained an almost pure argon atmosphere to prevent corrosion of the metal as it was being printed.

My company is all about 3D so I've seen quite a bit of really neat technology that is going to become mainstream as 3D printing is the future of manufacturing. They even brought a 3D printer to the ISS to print parts while being up there in space.
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Old 04-09-2015, 02:26 PM   #20
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My company is all about 3D so I've seen quite a bit of really neat technology that is going to become mainstream as 3D printing is the future of manufacturing.
It may not replace some molding and forging processes, but it could streamline mold and partmaking. Instead of having a skilled machinist spend hours building a mold, a 3D printer could make the mold from the 3D CAD file. Far less lost to interpretation. If it's in the file, it's in the mold. Should be a growing market, too, for CAD operators who understand manufacturing processes if you are taking the skilled machinist out of the process.
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