Experimenting with Cheap Lasers and Sugar for 3D Printing
I really enjoyed watching this video by our pal, Caleb Kraft, mucking around in his mad maker laboratory. Caleb’s had the idea rattling around in his head of hacking together the most basic method for edible 3D printing using a cheap laser and sugar.
He designs and 3D prints a crude bed to hold the sugar print material and manually advance it, layer by layer, and then tests out both a blue diode laser and a fiber laser with a galvo head.
He experiments with sugar, cocoa powder (not viable), and hot cocoa mix (sugar + cocoa powder). It was using the latter with the blue diode that finally allowed him to 3D print a decent part.
It’s always interesting to watch these types of video that are an exploratory process and where things aren’t always a roaring success.
As Caleb repeatedly points out, there are many examples online of people who have done this successfully using far more elaborate set-ups. This experiment was to prove that you could do it with the most minimal and inexpensive effort. He gets far enough to declare it a success.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.