When NASA recently released the STLs for the Mars Curiosity Rover I couldn’t wait to print it out. Of course, I always have trepidations because my print bed is only 100mmx100mm, and so often I find that something is too large to print. However, if one want’s something bad enough, you look for workarounds. My workaround is Blender, with blender and the skill set I’ve been working on ever since I got my Printrbot the .stl can be modified to fit my bed size… some of the times. Sometimes it takes some ingenuity. Fortunately, this time wasn’t one of them.
Taking the original body, I divided it in half along external detailing, and made some pins to hold the two pieces together. Not too hard, but always easier said than done. The original image also included flat disks to make the print stick better; only in our case, the bottom is flat, and it’s not really needed. So, taking care to keep the .stl file a manifold structure, also easier said than done, I removed the feet.
If you have a large printer and don’t need to break yours down into smaller pieces you’ll need to be able to print 161mm x 59mm x 108mm. If you have a small print bed, happy days, except for the body, every other part that needs to be printed will fit on the small Printrbot bed.
So, everyone will need the .stl files located at this NASA site: http://nasa3d.arc.nasa.gov/.