For several years, talented Blender educator Jonathan Williamson from Blender Cookie has created a tremendous range of free and fee tutorials that have taught so many of us, across many disciplines, how to use the highly-capable, if challenging to learn, open source Blender model and animation application. (His topology and intro to character modeling tutorials are, in my opinion, gold standards among the Blender resources available.) He’s shown us how to create characters, environments, hard edge models, organic models, you name it — and now he heads in a new direction to share steps for how to use Blender to prepare models for physical manufacture for 3D printing at Shapeways. This is an excellent resource for anyone who wishes to use Blender to design for 3D printing:
3D printing continues to get better and cheaper every day. It also is becoming more accessible to casual users and artists. One of the great services offering 3D Printing to you and I is Shapeways. Shapeways allows you to not only get your models printed, it allows you to create an online shop to sell your own models. It’s like the Etsy of 3D printing.
However, preparing your models for 3D printing has it’s own set of requirements. You need to take into account the physical size of the model. Is the model solid or hollow? How thick are the walls? Will the form support its self in the chose material? Among other things, these are just a few of the bits you need to keep in mind when preparing your model for printing.
This tutorial takes you through the process of preparing Suzanne, Blender’s monkey mascot, for printing from start to finish. You’ll learn how to work with real-world measurements, how to hollow out the model, how to check for non-manifold meshes, how to make an escape hole, and more….
Thanks to 3ders.org for posting about this launch — And don’t overlook Blender Cookie’s awesome coupon code! “Get 15% off your 3D Print at Shapeways with code: b6cgk”
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to creating incredible works of engineering, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer! If you’ve made a cool project that combines 3D printing and electronics, be sure to let us know, and we’ll feature it here!