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Thread: 3D printing........???????

  1. #1
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    Default 3D printing........???????

    My grandson has been using the 3D printer I bought before Christmas. Most of what he wants to print need supports for printing. I don't like supports, too much trouble cleaning up the print. My preference is to cut the model into glue together pieces to print without supports.

    The question is, what program are you 3D'ers using to cut the models? Slic3r is one I've had mixed results with. Netfabb, old free basic version, seems to be the best I've tried so far, but not without problems too.

    He found a series of models, Plakit, in Thingiverse. These crash Slic3r, they load into Netfabb with a notice of needing repair, but don't seem to repair. What I did find was to open the Plakit models in Fusion 360 and re-save as stl. The saved stl's then open in Netfabb without a repair notice and can be cut.

  2. #2
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    I think the best way of doing it is in the CAD program (before exporting to a slicer).

    Simplify3d is my slicing software. By choosing the default type of the support, so far (my experience is quite limited yet) I didn't have any problem removing the supports. They can be removed very cleanly. Besides, the software allows you to modify support: remove, add, change it's properties, etc. Simplify3D is an excellent and highly customizable slicing software. The only ways of cutting a model there that I know would be to drop the model below the printing surface (to print only what's above it) and/or asking to print from layer #x to layer #z (Advanced tab under the Edit Process Settings). Play with it. You can also flip or rotate the model if needed.

    You can contact Simplify3D support people. They are very nice and helpful. Besides, there are excellent videos produced by the company.
    Last edited by MichaelP; 03-15-2019 at 01:40 PM.

  3. #3
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    I use Cura for printing STL models and you can define attributes about the support structures it creates. I've never had to change them, but with Cura the default support structures were always very easy to remove and basically just crumble away. Even internal support structures that you have to "dig" out were very easy to cleanly remove.

    Maybe take a look at see if there are configurable properties that you can adjust with regards to the type/density/hollowness of the support structure(s) that are created. IIRC, most of the support structure Cura creates by default is very brittle honeycomb type structures and again, they just break right off very easily and cleanly.
    Work hard play hard

  4. #4
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    I tend to use Slic3r for the most part, I've gotten supports to work very well in PLA and acceptable in ABS, but PETG I'm struggling with. I have had no issues cutting models in Slic3r though... that aspect has actually improved quite a bit in recent versions. Custom supports/pillars I often do in Meshmixer but I haven't fine tuned them as well as I have in Slic3r, I know I can get better results. I haven't used it recently, but Cura was another good one I tested initially and it worked well.

    As for the model that is crashing Slic3r, can you post a link to it?

  5. #5
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    For complex meshes, breaking the model into parts for printing can be interesting.

    There is Meshmixer, free from Autodesk. It's free because only an insane person would try to sell it. It has 2 error messages, that I've come across anyway. One is "an unknown error has occurred" and the other is a crash-dump. Basically, if it's a "good" model then it can be parted into sections. If it's a bad model (lots of internal errors) then it's crash-city and you probably don't have enough hair left. Or, you won't by the time you're done.

    Then there is Blender, open-source free. Incredibly powerful, does everything, but the interface... well, let's just say it was probably created by some freak-genius operating in some altered dimension and he (probably a 'he') found some hyper-efficient way of working, for him. Sort of like vi. I basically need to do a google search for every step, multiple times because the solution is impossible to remember.

    I found this great model of a DH88, the plane "Bulldog" in the movie Planes is modelled on. Figured I'd just bust it into parts and print it for my kid. That was a month ago. Still not there. Model from hell... I told Meshmixer to split it, then "separate the shells". Ended up with over 300 parts... right down to the needles on the gauges in the cockpit. Then it crashed. Not a model intended to print, apparently. But, I'm stubborn. Blender it is.

    For stuff that would otherwise print okay, Meshmixer is probably your best bet.

    David...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tuvix72 View Post
    I tend to use Slic3r for the most part, I've gotten supports to work very well in PLA and acceptable in ABS, but PETG I'm struggling with. I have had no issues cutting models in Slic3r though... that aspect has actually improved quite a bit in recent versions. Custom supports/pillars I often do in Meshmixer but I haven't fine tuned them as well as I have in Slic3r, I know I can get better results. I haven't used it recently, but Cura was another good one I tested initially and it worked well.

    As for the model that is crashing Slic3r, can you post a link to it?
    Here's thje model, it's Spock from Star Trek in the Plakit series:

    https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3366861

  7. #7
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    If I needed to print it in pieces using a slicer, I'd put it down on the back half way below the bed (coronal section plane). The division line would go through/near the ears and will divide the head, arms, body and the legs creating the front and back halves. This should filly (or almost fully, depending on where the ears and right hand fingers are cut) eliminate a need for any outside supports.

    P.S. And it could be printed even with the platform as an integral part of the model.
    Last edited by MichaelP; 03-15-2019 at 07:22 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by DR View Post
    Here's thje model, it's Spock from Star Trek in the Plakit series:

    https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3366861
    It sliced fine for me with the latest version of slic3r from here https://shop.prusa3d.com/forum/gener...a7533459bf1c4d
    Cheers,
    Jon

  9. #9
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    I forgot to mention I used the appimage version of it on fedora 29_64.
    Vid of it in action:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qoAL...ature=youtu.be
    Jon

  10. #10
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    I have tried a few slicers and for me I found IdeaMaker has worked the best. I still use cura now and then but much better results with ideaMaker.

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