Innovating in The Time of Corona(virus)

The exponential spread of the novel coronavirus across the globe led to overwhelming demand on supply chains and disruptions to traditional manufacturing and distribution systems. Because of societal lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, a dire need quickly arose for locally fabricated, specifically focused and creatively sourced solutions to equipment shortages and emergency supplies. At home and across the globe, designers and engineers quickly mobilized into online, open-source prototyping groups to solve the challenge of a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), ventilators and medical device accessories. 3D printing and additive manufacturing was an obvious go-to, with the ability to rapidly prototype and iterate on the fly, teams could utilize 3D printers to supply healthcare providers with equipment now, as soon as there were designs to print. The intention and needs were obvious and clear – to aid humanity and fill the gaps in supply chains – however, organizing volunteers and streamlining the process to avoid duplicate efforts was a daunting task.

As a company with a wealth of R&D project experience and long used to working as a distributed team, re:3D put out the call that we would prototype – for free – any life-saving devices or PPE in order to expedite review by medical professionals. We are conscientious contributors to the open source design community for COVID-19 response. We take a First, Do No Harm approach to any design work we do for this effort, meaning that it needs to be designed with input from, and in partnership with, the individuals who will utilize any equipment we prototype. We will not create anything that gives a false sense of security, but is ineffective or harmful. Our medical providers on the front lines are in need, and we are honored to take on the challenge.

Face Shields

In two overlapping efforts, we prototyped a design for a 3D printed face shield with full visor coverage and an adjustable zip tie style latching mechanism. The inquiry started in Puerto Rico. Vicente Gascó, our friend and colleague from Tredé and Engine-4 shared he had a supply of 4000 clear plastic lenses for face shields, but no visor to which they would attach to the head. Armed with only the measurements of the lenses and aided by an idea from assembly guru and NASA technician Andrew Jica in Houston, Brian Duhaime, our mechanical engineer in Austin, and Alessandra Montano, our graphics designer in Puerto Rico, pumped out five different iterations of a face shield in only 48 hours.

Vicente and Luis Torres, co-founder of Engine-4, pulled our Puerto Rico Gigabot out of Parallel-18 and added it to the existing Gigabot at Engine-4. Gigabots in Austin and in Puerto Rico printed out iterations of the designs for testing.

In Houston at the same time, CTO Matthew Fiedler, mechanical engineer Helen Little and community liaison Charlotte Craff were meeting with doctors from a local hospital to discuss their needs for a face shield. Knowing that vetted, open source face shield designs were already available, the group reviewed designs by Prusa, Lazarus3D, Budmen and Professional Plastics. The Houston team 3D printed existing options for the doctors to test, but the designs didn’t meet all of the doctors’ needs:

  • Lightweight, fully closed top
  • Reducing the air gap between lens and chin
  • 180 degree lens coverage
  • Limit number of parts to reduce need to source materials in short supply

Knowing that supply chains were disrupted and very little raw materials were available in a timely manner, re:3D conferred with Professional Plastics and determined that plastic sheeting supplies were well behind schedule, but that there were excess pre-cut face shield lenses available. Again, re:3D opted to prototype to existing, local supplies, keeping stress off of traditional supply chains and getting creative with what was available.

Over the next week, Helen built on the work done for the Puerto Rico design, integrated the needs of the doctors and iterated ten different versions of the face shield while working from home and rarely getting to hold a print in her hands. The result is a single print, face shield with an adjustable latching mechanism. It’s designed for 180 degrees of protection and comfort without the addition of foam padding.  It has the approval of the hospital’s Infection Control and  is currently available at the National Institutes of Health 3D Print exchange for COVID-19 Response. https://3dprint.nih.gov/discover/3dpx-013504

Hands-Free Door Pulls

Eliminating unnecessary shared contact surfaces is imperative, especially in buildings where essential workers are operating to continue necessary services. Our team includes multiple military service members. One of our reservists was activated when she sent out a call back to our team to make some hands-free door pulls to use on the base. Aided by Matthew Fiedler, Mike Battaglia, our designer in Austin, and Brian Duhaime went to work prototyping hands-free door pulls for lever-style and bar-style door handles.

These designs were drafted before we had dimensions for either of the door styles, so had to be modeled in such a way to enable incremental dimensional adjustments while preserving the models’ shapes. During her free time, the service member sent feedback on the first versions via pictures and notes, and Brian and Mike iterated the changes remotely, melding organic shaped and attachment options into single print solutions.

The hands-free door pulls are now successfully in use on base, protecting our military personnel as they work to respond and aid COVID-19 efforts. These models are available for download here https://3dprint.nih.gov/discover/3dpx-013825 and here: https://3dprint.nih.gov/discover/3dpx-013822

From Intubation Box to Drape Stands

As a 3D printer manufacturer, we are understandably advocates of 3D printing use in manufacturing. However, we recognize that not all innovations require, or are best served by, an exclusively 3D printed solution. As we do much of our manufacturing in-house, including machining parts on our CNCs, we can apply rapid prototyping principals to traditional manufacturing methods. Take the example of an aerosol or intubation box:

We were contacted by an anesthesiologist based in Austin about modifying such a box, used to protect doctors and nurses from aerosols released when intubating a patient. The doctor’s main concerns were ability to clean and the need for a “helper” hole. This equipment needed a curved, clear surface rather than sharp corners where germs could hide. We offered to prototype using polycarbonate sheeting and an aluminum framework available in our machine shop.  In this case, the request for aid evolved before we produced a prototype. The anesthesiologist reported that the existing boxes were unwieldy and took up too much space, so instead requested a solution for supporting clear plastic drapes to achieve the same purpose and be easy to store. Matthew Fiedler proposed a combined 3d printed base and a bent aluminum frame for the project. Design work is ongoing and we will update this post as the prototype develops.

Are you a healthcare professional needing a COVID-19 related equipment solution? Please reach out to us at info@re3d.org to begin coordination. Should you wish to purchase any of our COVID-19 designs. They’re available in our online store: https://shop.re3d.org/collections/covid-19

Interested in supporting existing efforts to fight COVID-19? See below for how to help in Austin, Houston and Puerto Rico.

There is a huge maker community that has sprung to action to support the 3D printing of PPE here in Austin and the surrounding areas.  One of the largest efforts is being run by Masks for Docs (masksfordocs.com), who are actively soliciting donated face shield prints, assembling the shield, and distributing them to hospitals, health clinics, nursing homes, etc – all around the Austin area.  To help with this effort, re:3D will be collecting donated 3D printed face shields in drop-boxes at two locations, Brew & Brew and the Draught House Pub.
 
If you have a 3D printer at home or work & want to help out in the Austin area, you can access the Face Shield Design here.
 
Recommended Print Settings:
  • PETG is preferred, but PLA is completely acceptable if you don’t have PETG or are not able to print with it.
  • 3-4 solid top/bottom layers
  • .3mm layer height
  • 5 Perimeters (AKA Shells or walls)
  • 0% Infill
 
Drop off boxes can be found at:
 
Brew & Brew
500 San Marcos St #105, Austin, TX 78702
 
The Draught House
4112 Medical Pkwy, Austin, TX 78756
TXRX and the amazing maker-community continue to organize face shield collection around Houston.  We are donating 3D printed face shields as well as hosting a community donation box for makers in the Clear Lake area who are printing the face shields at home.  At our factory, the batches are consolidated and sent to TXRX for assembly and distribution to hospitals and first responders in the Houston area.  To date, over 1600 face shields have been donated from the Clear Lake area –  keep it up!
More information and the design file is available here.
 
The Clear Lake drop off box can be found at:
re:3D, Inc.
1100 Hercules
STE 220
Houston, TX 77058
The maker community, including a few Gigabots have done a fantastic job collaborating in San Juan & beyond. We are currently collecting requests for those in need of PPE and sharing opportunities to connect with Engine-4 and Trede’s efforts in Bayamon and additional efforts. If you live in Mayaguez and would like create face shields to be assembled with sheets that have been donated to Engine-4, a drop off box has been established. A UPRM student has also initiated a Slack channel to share other needs. Email info@re3d.org for access.
 
The Mayaguez drop off box can be found at:

Maker Chris’ house at:
76 Calle Santiago R Palmer E, Mayaguez PR 00680


If you live outside of these areas and/or are seeking ways to contribute, A Form to Volunteer is Available Here. We will be responding to inquiries this weekend and doing our best to facilitate introductions:)

COVID-19 Update: Operations, Serving Educators & Joining the Fight

Update May 29, 2020

It’s been a month since our last update, and our COVID-19 response is still going strong! On May 12, we were honored to receive an honorable mention in the America Makes Fit to Face – Mask Design Challenge.  Designer Mike Battaglia and Engineer Samantha Reeve submitted a mask in two sizes designed to be printed with NinjaTek Cheetah. We continue to collaborate with projects for supplying PPE and consulting on new solutions for face shields to ventilators because we understand that effective face protections is essential for keeping our employees and the general public happy and healthy.

Our Houston factory is still closed to the public, but our team remains committed to building your Gigabots and filling your supply orders and service needs.

Gigabot customers around the world are tirelessly supporting their communities and we are honored to share their stories. If you have been doing COVID-19 work, we’d love to hear from you!

AUSTIN UPDATE
Thanks to the efforts of so many groups in the city, the PPE needs for healthcare workers there have been met and we have wound down our collection boxes for 3D printed PPE.

HOUSTON UPDATE
As the city begins to open back up we have teamed up with Impact Hub Houston on PPE for the People, an effort to provide PPE to workers in minority and under-served communities who are at greater risk of critical illness from COVID-19. Please support this project by sharing, donating and letting local businesses know about the opportunity.

PUERTO RICO UPDATE
The PPE support work in Puerto Rico continues and the Gigabot collaboration at Engine-4 keeps churning out supplies for the island.

If you’d like to be connected to any local effort we would be happy to make introductions and provide resources. Please reach out to us at info@re3d.org.

Update: April 25, 2020

It’s hard to believe that two more weeks have past since our last post! We continue to aggregate and collect your PPE donations in Austin, Houston and PR. We also (just met the deadline for the America Makes Mask Fit Challenge). The final design will be posted to our NIH 3D print exchange tomorrow:)

We continue to be inspired by YOU, and welcome your pics and videos for future stories!

For those of you looking to help with PPE shortages near Austin, Houston and Puerto Rico, details can be found below:

AUSTIN
There is a huge maker community that has sprung to action to support the 3D printing of PPE here in Austin and the surrounding areas.  One of the largest efforts is being run by Masks for Docs (masksfordocs.com), who are actively soliciting donated face shield prints, assembling the shield, and distributing them to hospitals, health clinics, nursing homes, etc – all around the Austin area.  To help with this effort, re:3D will be collecting donated 3D printed face shields in drop-boxes at two locations, Brew & Brew, Capital Factory and the Draught House Pub.
 
If you have a 3D printer at home or work & want to help out in the Austin area, you can access the Face Shield Design here. Recommended Print Settings:
  • PETG is preferred, but PLA is completely acceptable if you don’t have PETG or are not able to print with it.
  • 3-4 solid top/bottom layers
  • .3mm layer height
  • 5 Perimeters (AKA Shells or walls)
  • 0% Infill
 

Drop off boxes can be found at:
Brew & Brew
500 San Marcos St #105, Austin, TX 78702
The Draught House
4112 Medical Pkwy, Austin, TX 78756
Capital Factory
 701 Brazos St, Austin, TX 78701
(located in the parking garage, next to the loading dock:)
 
HOUSTON
TXRX is winding down its collection of its 3d printed face shield as they have been able to move to injection molding; a move we fully support! We are keeping our drop box open for community PPE donations and will make sure they get donated to those in need. Currently we can accept: assembled face shields, ear savers and Montana Masks. As we get more requests we will post opportunities here.

The Clear Lake drop off box can be found at:
re:3D Inc
1100 Hercules STE 220 Houston TX 77058
 
PUERTO RICO
The maker community, including a few Gigabots, have done a fantastic job collaborating in San Juan & beyond. We are currently collecting requests for those in need of PPE and sharing opportunties to connect with Engine-4 and Trede’s efforts in Bayamon, or other groups mobilizing. If you live in Mayaguez and would like create face shield to be assembled with sheets that have been donated to Engine-4, a drop off box has been established. A UPRM student has also initiated a Slack channel to share other needs. Email info@re3d.org for access.
 
 
San Juan face shield coordination:
Engine 4 Co-working Space: donation3dprinting@outlook.com
 
Mayaguez Drop-off: 
UPRM Transit and Security, Tránsito y Vigilancia:
Enter UPRM Campus through main gate, and guard will direct you

Update: April 10, 2020

What a week! You all have done an amazing job helping our neighbors & the community at large!

While we continue to iterate this face shield design for the Texas Children’s Hospital (you can view the design on the NIH 3D Print Exchange), as well as hands-free door pulls, we have been blown away by the many Gigabots around the world who are helping with the fight. We’ve started collecting some stories. If you would like to be added, please feel free to share your pictures, details and video with info@re3d.org!


Some of you have also asked how you can use Gigabot and/or other printers to support the local movements near our offices. For those of you looking to help with PPE shortages near Austin, Houston and Puerto Rico, details can be found below:

AUSTIN
There is a huge maker community that has sprung to action to support the 3D printing of PPE here in Austin and the surrounding areas.  One of the largest efforts is being run by Masks for Docs (masksfordocs.com), who are actively soliciting donated face shield prints, assembling the shield, and distributing them to hospitals, health clinics, nursing homes, etc – all around the Austin area.  To help with this effort, re:3D will be collecting donated 3D printed face shields in drop-boxes at two locations, Brew & Brew and the Draught House Pub.
 
If you have a 3D printer at home or work & want to help out in the Austin area, you can access the Face Shield Design here. Recommended Print Settings:
  • PETG is preferred, but PLA is completely acceptable if you don’t have PETG or are not able to print with it.
  • 3-4 solid top/bottom layers
  • .3mm layer height
  • 5 Perimeters (AKA Shells or walls)
  • 0% Infill
 

Drop off boxes can be found at:
Brew & Brew
500 San Marcos St #105, Austin, TX 78702
The Draught House
4112 Medical Pkwy, Austin, TX 78756
 
 
 
HOUSTON
TXRX and the amazing maker-community continue to organize face shield collection around Houston.  We are donating 3D printed face shields as well as hosting a community donation box for makers in the Clear Lake area who are printing the face shields at home.  At our factory, the batches are consolidated and sent to TXRX for assembly and distribution to hospitals and first responders in the Houston area.  We’ve received up to 300 donations in 6 hours- keep it up!
More information and the design file is available here.
 

The Clear Lake drop off box can be found at:
re:3D Inc
1100 Hercules STE 220 Houston TX 77058
 
 
 
PUERTO RICO
The maker community, including a few Gigabots, have done a fantastic job collaborating in San Juan & beyond. We are currently collecting requests for those in need of PPE and sharing opportunties to connect with Engine-4 and Trede’s efforts in Bayamon, or other groups mobilizing. If you live in Mayaguez and would like create face shield to be assembled with sheets that have been donated to Engine-4, a drop off box has been established. A UPRM student has also initiated a Slack channel to share other needs. Email info@re3d.org for access.
 
 
San Juan face shield coordination:
Engine 4 Co-working Space: donation3dprinting@outlook.com
 
Mayaguez Drop-off: 
UPRM Transit and Security, Tránsito y Vigilancia:
Enter UPRM Campus through main gate, and guard will direct you

 

If you live outside of these areas and/or are seeking ways to contribute:

A Form to Volunteer is Available Here. We will be responding to inquiries this weekend and doing our best to facilitate introductions:)

Update: April 3, 2020

re:3D is working on a number of different projects related to 3D printing and COVID response.  Our Houston factory is helping to support two efforts.  The first is supporting the efforts of TXRX and the amazing maker-community organizing taking place around Houston.  re:3D is donating 3D printed face shields as well as hosting a community donation box for makers in the Clear Lake area who are printing the face shields at home.  At our factory, the batches are consolidated and sent to TXRX for assembly and distribution to hospitals and first responders in the Houston area.  Second, the re:3D design team is prototyping a custom face shield design, in conjunction with doctors from Texas Children’s Hospital.  The new design incorporates a pre-cut clear plastic face shield with a 3D printed holder/headband.

In Austin, re:3D is rallying the local maker community.  While there are a number of people working on the 3D printed PPE issue in the Austin area, re:3D is hoping to help organize these efforts.  The Austin team is designing hands-free door pulls and intubation boxes, and we will be releasing all of the 3D printable open-source designs that we have created, including face shields, door pulls and anything else we develop, free of charge. We are opening Austin community drop boxes at multiple locations where anyone who 3D prints can donate their COVID-19 parts. location information will be released as soon as it’s finalized.

In Puerto Rico, re:3D is supporting efforts led by Engine-4 on 3d printing face masks and ventilator splitters. Thanks to efforts by Parallel18, our Gigabot has been relocated to Engine-4 to print for this effort and we are hosting weekly calls for healthcare professionals, designers and makers to organize the community to support creating PPE unique to the needs on the island. We are connecting with every available Gigabot owner on the island to help them join the cause.

For anyone who wants to volunteer to help, please fill out this form.

Updated: March 25, 2020

To our Global Gigabot Family and Supporters,

We hope this message finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy. The 3D printing community is a talented, diverse and compassionate arm of the creative tech ecosystem. We are energized and inspired by the mass mobilization of 3D printing to tackle COVID-19 head-on by providing protective gear to medical personnel, medical equipment to aid victims and filling gaps in supply chains. Every day, you are proving that this technology changes the world for the better. Keep at it!

re:3D IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS!

We have been closely following COVID-19 developments in our areas and listening to the recommendations from local and federal authorities. The small yet mighty re:3D team has always been mobile and adaptable, and we are continuing our regular operations while keeping the health and safety of our team at the forefront of all considerations. Here’s how:

    • Your Gigabots® are being built and shipped on their regular schedule.
    • Your supply orders are being fulfilled with minimal delay.
    • Your 3D printing, design and 3D scanning services are moving forward as planned.
    • As an essential business, the Houston factory is open and fully operational. In-person visits are restricted to deliveries and pickups only to respect guidance on social distancing.
    • Meetups, walk-in tours and in-person classes are suspended until further notice.
    • Classes will move to online-only as format and demand allows.

$100 SERVICE CREDITS FOR EDUCATORSThe education landscape has dramatically changed in the last few weeks and as many educators gamely adapt to new methods of teaching, you have awed us with your adaptability, tenacity, and positivity. In recognition of your herculean efforts, now through April 10th we are offering to educators a $100 credit, with no minimum purchase required, for re:3D printing, designing and scanning services.

For all those schooling from home, we are extending a 20% off discount on all services (scanning, design, printing, materials testing) for any effort supporting distance learning.

Service quotes can be requested at re3d.org/services

HELPING THE EFFORT TO FIGHT COVID-19

re:3D’s Houston factory is equipped with a printer farm of large-format industrial Gigabot® 3D FFF and FGF printers, a metrology-grade 3D scanner, a full machine shop that includes two CNCs, manual lathe, drill press and cutting tools. This equipment and our team of 25 engineers, designers and technicians is available to fabricate equipment for healthcare providers that has been reviewed for viability and safety by medical professionals. Please reach out to us at info@re3d.org to begin coordination. We are happy to prototype any life-savings device for free in order to expedite review by medical professionals.

For those looking for ways to put your 3D printing know-how to work in the effort to fight COVID-19, we are collecting contact information to share further developments and opportunities to 3D print for those in need.

 A Form to Volunteer is Available Here 

Additionally, a great list of other projects has been curated by our friends at the non-profit Women In 3D Printing.

Stay Healthy and Keep Printing!

  ~Gigabot & The re:3D Team

Catch Us at SXSW 2017!

SXSW prep is in full swing and we can’t wait to see you!

You can connect with re:3D and Gigabot at the events below:

Do you have a request for another event Gigabot should visit?

~Email info@re3d.org with your tips!

Pitching for a Circular Economy: Part 2- Why We Presented our Big Idea to Bunker Labs Austin

Sharing our Vision to 3D Print from Reclaimed Plastic in Texas

After reflecting on Aruba at Atech2016, Matthew and  I were convinced that our vision to 3D print from reclaimed plastic, albeit premature, was a passion we were compelled to continue sharing. We also felt it was imperative that in addition to casting our vision overseas, it was just as important that we pitch the opportunity to join our cause to our colleagues in Texas.  For this reason, I took a break from travel to join Mike Strong, Gigabot and Todd at the 2016 Austin Bunker Muster, a short walk…err roll….down the street from our Austin office.

We arrived a little sweaty, but stoked to assist our friends at Austin Bunker Labs in setting up for their annual fundraising event. Mike & Todd volunteered to help with setup & lighting while I paced around the block, practicing for the pitch competition that evening. The Muster in Austin was a unique event that brought together participants and partners for a day-long event of veteran entrepreneurs pitching their businesses, an Idea Lab for speakers, and a marketplace to buy products from veteran-owned small businesses. As a veteran employer & owned company, our entire team was humbled to support the festivities.

The day flew by as we listened to talks, demoed Gigabot, and chatted with old friends such as Marcus from Vthreat.  We also made new relationships, including JP Morgan Chase, re:3D’s new banker!

As the evening drew a close, I found myself incredibly nervous as we prepared to pitch against 20 peers. Unlike past competitions, this time we took the stage in front of friends, not strangers. These contestants were heroes we revered, who had sacrificed time & limbs for opportunity. Taking the stage with them was perhaps the greatest honored of my life. Normalized with stage-fright and determined to support our buddies, we celebrated each other and our companies’ successes to date.

During the event, I struggled to convey our strategy for repurposing post-manufacturing waste into 3D printers in less than 90 seconds. Further adding to the anxiety was the realization that without winning, we would not have the resources to begin explore 3D printing from recyclables in Q1 2017.  It was only by leveraging the encouragement from friends like Travis from Stump Armour we presented our desire to 3D print from trash. With so many outstanding competitors, we were stunned to learned the community had honored us with $5K to make our idea a reality!

Where do we go next?

With $5K in hand we re:3D received much-needed affirmation that 3D printing from recyclables was not only something inherently right, but offered benefit for our neighbors. Taking a selfie with Austin Mayor Steve Adler gave us certainty that Austin & the Bunker community could incubate our audacious idea!

~Happy Printing!

Samantha

DIY Gigahacking: 4 Knob Bed Leveling Kit

The printed parts can be found on our sketchfab page HERE: https://skfb.ly/PyEq. Pieces must be printed using ABS except for the knobs which can be PLA or ABS, The arms should use 3 perimeters and 40% infill. The rest of the parts can have 2 perimeters and 30 percent infill.

Let’s walk through the steps to retrofit your Gigabot to use the new knob system. Note: the knobs will be installed in the 4 corners of your Gigabot. The picture shows one centered knob in the back but this is for an early revision of Open GB.

4 Knob Leveling Install

Hardware

  • 1/2 inch-20 bolt (4)
  • http://www.lowes.com/pd/The-Hillman-Group-1-2-in-20-x-3-in-Zinc-Plated-Standard-SAE-Hex-Bolt/3012744
  • 1/2 inch-20 nut (4)
  • http://www.lowes.com/pd/The-Hillman-Group-2-Count-1-2-in-Zinc-Plated-Standard-SAE-Hex-Nuts/3012745
  • Arm (4)
arm
  • Bed Pad (4)
boltcap
  • Bolt Cap (4)
knob
  • Knob (4)
knobagin

Additional Materials used

Building the assembly

  • Put a dab of GO2 glue on the sides of a ½ inch nut
  • Drop the nut into the leveling arm so that the hole lines up with the hole for the nut.
  • Add some more glue into the recess just for good measure.
  • Put some glue under the head of the ½ inch bolt and insert the bolt into the knob so that the head hides in the hex hole; make sure it’s pushed in all the way.
  • Add a little more glue on the other side along the sides of the cutout.
  • Glue the cap on the other end of the bolt.
  • Glue sets in 30 min, cures in 24 hours

Preparing for installation

  • Loosen the bolts holding the bed rails. Lower all bed rails to the bottom of the slotted holes and re-tighten the bolts.
  • Remove the adjustment bolts/springs in all 4 corners.
remove
  • Lower the locknuts on all 4 L-bracket spring assemblies. This will provide the bed with the travel it needs. It’s easier to perform this step before putting on the build surface so that you have access to the head of the bolts.
  • Make sure that the rails are generally level with the bottom motors. The one that I installed these on was a decent amount off.
  • IMPORTANT: Adjust the Z height so that the natural state of the bed is about ½ cm or a little less than ¼ inch from the nozzle. Apply another nut to the underside of the Z limit switch bolt as this adjustment will no longer be used and should remain in place.

Installing the leveling assemblies

affixed
  • Insert 4 magic t-nuts (or regular t-nuts if you’re building it from scratch) along the top recess of the front bed rail. Make sure the nuts are inserted in between the L bracket/springs. Note: The locknut needs to be lower than the one in the image; ignore that.
  • Insert 2 t-nuts into each corner of the top recess of the back bed rail. Make sure they go into the side that is front facing. All leveling arms point towards the front of the machine.
  • Use M5 x 10 screws to bolt the arm assemblies into the t-nuts in the top rail.
  • Push the left arm snug against the left L-bracket and the Right snug against the right L bracket. The back arm will sit just left of the cable tray. Give it about a half inch clearance on the right.
  • Put a line of silicone on the flat side of each of the 3 bed pads.
  • Lower all knobs so that the nubs are almost touching the top of the arms, manually lift the bed and slip the bed pads over the nubs trying not to make a mess with the silicone in the process.
  • Raise the knobs and straighten out the pads. The pads should self-align to the nubs but just make sure the pads look visually straight to the edge of the bed and the rail.
  • Put a bead of silicone around each pad and then removed any excess by smearing it with my finger.

Leveling the bed

mikedone
  • Position the nozzle above the left knob and turn clockwise to raise the bed in that corner. Raise so that it’s almost touching. Do the same for the right side.
  • Raise the back knob so that the nozzle is almost touching the bed.
  • Go back to the front left and use a sheet of paper to keep between the bed and the nozzle. Turn the knob clockwise until you can feel slight friction on the paper. Do the same for the right side, and then do the same in the back 2 knobs.
  • Move the nozzle around the bed and try the paper trick to make sure all is flat. If it sticks anywhere, recheck your 4 points.

COMPLETE!!!

Happy Printing!

~Mike

  • mike@re3d.org
  • @mikebattaglia

Made in America: 3D Printing Prototypes for Stump Armour Molds

Meet Travis: A Texan, father, entrepreneur, warrior, and inventor.

re:3D first met Travis in Austin last winter as he was prototyping his second version of Stump Armour: an affordable, accessible device he pioneered in order to expand mobility options for bilateral amputees.

As a combat-wounded Marine, Travis is uniquely qualified to inspire solutions to increase maneuverability for other double amputees while reducing back strain that traditional prosthetics can create. By using himself as the test subject and leveraging business insights he acquired in the 100 Entrepreneurs Project and the Entrepreneurial Bootcamp for Veterans (EBV), Travis launched Stump Armour on indiegogo this week.

stumparmourdurty
Stump Armour Mod 1

About Stump Armour

Stump Armour is a round design that connects to traditional sockets to allow for constant surface contact from any angle. Pressure can be directly applied to a terrain without changing position, allowing amputees to roll themselves up independently when preforming activities close to the ground.  Since the round shape can grab from nearly any position, it works great on uneven/irregular surfaces, so the amputee doesn’t need to focus as much concentration on limb placement when compared to other devices.  Travis doesn’t feel Stump Armour is intended to replace full leg or knee prosthetics. Rather, it’s meant to increase functionality with specific tasks.

IMG_1546

Keeping Costs Low

A key tenant of the Stump Armor’s mission is to make devices as affordable as possible worldwide. For this reason, Travis contracted Mike Battaglia & I last January to see if we could 3D print his vision for a Stump Armour’s Modification. Using Simplify3D we were able to generate a raft & support that could easily break off. The completed PLA prototypes printed great and we were excited to give them to Travis, who planned to use the prints to create a mold to scale Stump Armor globally.

IMG_1549
3D printed Stump Armour Mods 3 (left) and Mod 4 (right) cast at SureCast

Prints in hand, Travis partnered with local foundries who guided him through the process of making his own custom mold to cast multiple sets of Stump Armour.  This week we interviewed Travis to learn more about the process he used to create a mold from a print by working with Stevens Art. Below are the steps that he described:

stumparmourmold
  • From a 3d printed prototype made on Gigabot, a silicone rubber mold was created.
  • The print was covered in an releasing agent that was then covered in silicone, leaving an inlet for wax to be poured in later.
  • After the silicone cured, a 2 piece plaster shell was made.
  • Once completed, the silicone was carefully cut with a razor along where the plaster shells come together so it would come apart into 2 pieces.
stumparmourpour
  • The shells were clamped together and hot wax was then poured into the inlet.
  • When the wax hardened, the wax casting of the original print was removed.
stumparmourwaxdone
  • The wax cast was then dipped in a a ceramic slurry and power coat until a hard shell formed.
  • This shell was fired in an oven to harden the cast melt the wax out.
  • Metal was poured in and the ceramic shell was broken off after it cooled.
  • A metal replica of the original 3d print was then ready for finishing!
stumparmourstacked
Stump Armour Mod 2

Using lost wax casting, Travis was able to do his first production run of Stump Armour, which is now available to other amputees on the Stump Armour indiegogo campaign. You can support Stump Armour’s next production run and Stump Armour donations at: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/stump-armour#/  until July 1st.

stumparmournewlogo
Want to learn more?
  • Email: info@stumparmour.com
  • Web: http://www.stumparmour.com/
  • YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsObkfi6W6x2B6dpZ89_CGg/videos?sort=dd&view=0&shelf_id=0
  • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Greens-Machines-LLC-716439551739895/
  • Google: https://plus.google.com/u/2/b/106145756742784523319/106145756742784523319/posts
  • LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/10602419trk=tyah&trkInfo=clickedVertical%3Acompany%2CclickedEntityId%3A10602419%2Cidx%3A2-1-2%2CtarId%3A1464716547152%2Ctas%3Agreens%20machines

Testing MakeShaper PLA

Below are our notes that reflect our new open source filament testing. ASTM test samples are being created and in the upcoming months you can anticipate a summary on our website about our adventures in 3D printing material science. 

Material Tested: MakeShaper PLA

Manufacturer: MakeShaper PLA

Filament Diameter: 3.00 mm

Color Tested: Orange

Date Tested: 4/01/2016

OBSERVATIONS

Ease of use: Working with this filament was very enjoyable. It printed easily, was consistent and predictable. No breakage was noticed. The PLA appeared to be of a high quality.

Appearance: The filament exhibited a pleasing orange tone that even the greatest orange pantone haters on our team found appealing. A slight sheen presented when printed.

Size consistency: Awesome, less than 0.1mm within the roll, however the filament measured 2.87mm, not 3mm

Color consistency: Great, consistent throughout the coil.

SETTINGS

Print temperature: 190-215 C (suggested)/202C was used: nozzle / 60C : bed

Printer Used: Gigabot

Speed: 60 mm/s

Layer Height: 0.3mm

Infill: 15%

Type(s) of print surface used: PRINTnZ

List of test files printed: re:3D’s test files 1, 2, and 3 (logo, vase, and Benchy Torture Test). After April’s UX meeting, it was decided to also print a Moai as a 4th print.

You view watch a video summarizing our testing here:

FINDINGS

Odor: None

Bed adhesion (1: terrible – 5: fabulous!)

  • 5- Great adhesion was achieved with no temperature manipulation.

Stringing (1: lots – 5: none!)

  • 5 –No stringing was observed with our settings.

Shrinkage (1: lots – 5: none!)

  • 5- The filament extruded and cooled with no shrinkage.

Interlayer adhesion (1: terrible – 5: fabulous!)

  • 5- Perfect!
IMG_2556

NOTES:

  • The community is fortunate to have several PLA vendors to select from, however we’ve heard cautionary tales from many of our customers that all PLA is not created equal. MakeShaper PLA boasts that it is a high quality and dependable PLA.
  • Seeing that we offer a limited color selection in our store, we are always eager to test additional PLA sources in order refer customers to other reputable consumer retailers.
  • This material appears to yield consistent, quality prints.
  • Filament size consistency was excellent and no breakage was evident in the 1 kg roll we examined, suggesting it was well mixed.
  • No curling was observed in any of the 4 prints created.
  • We used the mid point of the temperature range that the manufacture provided (190-225C). No guidance was given for settings aside from temperature, so we used the standard Simplify3D profile on wiki.re3d.org.
  • The unboxing experience was well done and the recommendation sheet was professional.
    • A batch number was provided for traceability.
    • Manufacturer recommended settings were easily referenced on the enclosed documentation.

RECCOMENDATIONS:

  • After printing 4 objects in our protocol, I support MakeShaper’s claims that they produce high quality PLA and would recommend it to our customers.
  • Upon review, we would also recommend that we include this filament in our ASTM test sample research.
IMG_2553

Want to chat? Join our forum where we have initiated a thread about our experience!

https://re3d.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/206511376-Testing-MakeShaper-PLA

~Happy Printing!

Samantha

3D Printing A Superman Hood Emblem

Intern Jacob Lehmann shares on his recent DIY solution to personalize his aging Beetle.

My 3D printed Superman Hood Emblem

By: Jacob Lehmann

I work at re:3D and my job is to figure out and test cool and unique ways to use our 3d printers. I have 2003 VW beetle (and I love it) but some of the aesthetics have been worn and aged poorly over the years. So I had the idea to custom print a rear hood ornament. My amazing bosses thought this was a great idea and helped me to design and realize this idea.

It was hard to pick what exactly I wanted to make for my car. After running through tons of ideas I finally decided that because of the deep sienna blue of my vehicle that a superman logo would look amazing on it. This is a picture of my car after I peeled off the old rusty and broken VW emblem.

First I designed the hood emblem in a free Cad software called Onshape. You can access the tool at this link: https://www.onshape.com/ if you are interested. I have also posted the .stl file for free on Sketchfab on re:3D’s account: https://sketchfab.com/models/06af3cf73bde417e9118aa1535afb820

After slicing the file for printing, we put it on the Gigabot and watched it come to life!

And then we tested it on my car.  After looking at it closely, I decided I wasn’t happy with the size and printed a second to fill up the space better.

testingprint

Before we started we knew that the final solution wasn’t going to be in PLA.  In the Texas summer sun, thermoplastics such as PLA warp when left in a car, let alone on the boiling hood. Although this material is perfect for 3d printing because it melts at roughly 190+ Celsius, that very feature makes it hard to use outdoors, inside of engines, or pretty much anywhere that gets hot.

Thankfully our friends at Deep in the Heart Art Foundry (who own some of our Gigabots and use them in their lost wax casting) were more than happy to help us cast an alternative. We originally wanted to cast the piece in bronze and patina it, but they suggested that it would look better and be much lighter to cast it in Stainless steel. You can check out some of their amazing works of art here http://www.deepintheheart.net/. Here is the piece once we got it back (with a little bit of polishing).

unpolished

And after I finished polishing and sanding the piece.

polished

Here is the finished stainless steel piece next to the smaller PLA prototype.

Now all that was left to do was mount it on my vehicle. After cleaning the surface of my rear hood and the backside of the piece with some alcohol, and removing all the dust and grime, I placed some 3m double-sided tape on my car. NOTE: my bosses were concerned for my and other driver’s safety and have since purchased industrial epoxy.

3mtape

And finally, the beautiful hood emblem is complete and placed on my car. Now I can drive around fighting DC supervillains as much as I want.

final

Happy printing!

~Jake

  • Twitter: @jacobelehmann

Filament Testing – Scorpion Flexible Nylon by Black Magic 3D

Below are our notes that respect our new open source filament testing. ASTM test samples are being created and in the upcoming months you can anticipate a summary on our website that reflects our adventures in 3D printing material science. 

Material Tested: Scorpion Flexible Nylon

Manufacturer: Black Magic 3D

Filament Diameter: – 2.85mm

Color Tested: Natural

Date Tested: 4/06/2016

IMG_2511

OBSERVATIONS

Ease of use: Those new to 3D printing may want to budget extra time when printing with Scorpion as it takes a little manipulation to perfect the temperature & retraction settings.

Appearance: The natural filament was clean and consistent. Prints matched filament color & opacity.

Size consistency: Awesome, less than 0.1mm within the roll.

Color consistency: Great, consistent throughout the coil.

IMG_2507

SETTINGS

Print temperature: 230-235 C (suggested): nozzle / 60C : bed

Printer Used: Gigabot

Speed: 50 mm/s

Layer Height: 0.3mm

Infill: 15%

Type(s) of print surface used: PRINTnZ with 3M Blue Painter’s Tape and 2 coats of Elmer’s Glue Stick

List of test files printed: re:3D’s test files 1, 2, and 3 (logo, vase, and Benchy Torture Test)

You view watch a video summarizing our testing below:

FINDINGS

Odor: None

Bed adhesion (1: terrible – 5: fabulous!)

  • 4- Great adhesion could be achieved, but required two coats of PVA glue stick, painter’s tape, and the highest heat setting suggested for the bed and nozzle.

Stringing (1: lots – 5: none!)

  • 4 -Stringing was observed across lettering, however doubling the retraction settings eliminated the problem.

Shrinkage (1: lots – 5: none!)

  • 4- Some curling was observed on corners of logo after removal. It is suggested that the print be allowed to cool down on the bed before taking it off.

Interlayer adhesion (1: terrible – 5: fabulous!)

  • 5- Perfect!
IMG_2508

NOTES:

  • A flexible nylon offers a lot of possibility to the 3D printing community
    • This filament appears to overcome concerns that both flexible and nylon materials are difficult to use.
    • With the right settings and adhesion hygiene, this material appears to yield consistent, quality prints.
  • NOTE: this filament required 2 coats of Elmer glue stick on Blue Painter’s tape applied over a heated bed, using the max range of bed and nozzle heat settings
  • Filament size consistency was excellent.
  • Curling was observed with only 1 coat of glue stick and was also seen after print removal when the bed was still warm.
    • It is recommended that the bed be allowed to cool before removal to mitigate curling after print completion.
  • The best testing outcomes were observed at the highest temperatures settings (235C -nozzle, 60C- bed) and using the speed (50mm/s) that the manufacture provided. No guidance was given for retraction, which we found we needed to double or standard setting in order to eliminate stringing across lettering.
  • The unboxing experience was well done and the recommendation sheet was very useful. 
    • No date stamp for production was listed, however a batch number was provided for traceability.
    • Manufacturer recommended settings were easily referenced on the enclosed documentation.
IMG_2510

RECCOMENDATIONS:

  • This filament is extremely impressive and more than exceeded expectations due to past expereinces working with nylons and flexible materials.
  • Upon review, we would highly recommend that larger, more complex prints be created to further investigate the potential this exotic, and much needed material provides.
IMG_2368

Want to chat? Join our forum where we have initiated a thread about our experience!

https://re3d.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/206375086-Testing-Scorpion-Flexible-Nylon-on-Gigabot

~Happy Printing!

Samantha

Filament Testing – 3D Fuel Advanced PLA

Below are our notes that respect our new open source filament testing. ASTM test samples are being created and in the upcoming months you can anticipate a summary on our website that reflects our adventures in 3D printing material science. 

Material Tested: 3D FUEL/APLA

Manufacturer: 3D Fuel

Filament Diameter: – 2.85mm

Color Tested: Bright green

Date Tested: 2/29/2016

IMG_2143

OBSERVATIONS

Ease of use:  Extremely printable with excellent adhesion.

Appearance:  The green filament was vibrant with a smooth texture. Prints yielded a slightly “shiny” surface.

Size consistency:  Average, within .1mm within roll.

Color consistency: Great, consistent throughout roll.

IMG_2140

SETTINGS

Print temperature: 210 C (nozzle) / 55C (bed)

Printer Used: Gigabot

Speed: 45 mm/s

Layer Height: 0.3mm

Infill: 30%

Type(s) of print surface used: PRINTnZ

List of test files printed: re:3D’s test files 1, 2, and 3 (logo, vase, airplane gear piece)

 You can watch a video  summarizing our testing:

FINDINGS

Odor: None

Bed adhesion (1: terrible – 5: fabulous!)

  • 5 (only the settings listed above were tested, but the manufacturer’s recommendations seemed to be accurate)

Stringing (1: lots -5: none!)

  • 5 – None!

Shrinkage (1:lots-5: none!)

  • 5-None!

Interlayer adhesion (1:terrible-5:fabulous!)

  • 5- Perfect!
IMG_2154

NOTES:

  • The promise of a more heat resistant PLA is super enticing to the 3D printing community.
    • After testing, the landing gear was exposed to high temperature heat via a hair dryer and showed little warping.
      • Further controlled testing would need to be implemented to investigate this claim, but it does initially appear to be stronger and more heat resistant than traditional PLA.
  • NOTE: this filament was tested 4 months after receipt, however, for many users a 4 month shelf life is necessary.
    • Testing fresh filament is expected to yield similar or even better results.
  • Filament size consistency was about on par with most filament.
  • No delamination or curling was observed.
  • All testing was conducted at the midpoint of the temperature and speed range that the manufacture provided. It’s likely that the outcome would have been even better had the ranges had been explored in more detail.
  • The unboxing experience was well done and the recommendation sheet was highly professional.
  • We appreciated the Made in America reference, and date stamp of quality control on the box & insert.
  • Manufacturer recommended settings were easily referenced on the enclosed documentation.

RECCOMENDATIONS:

  • This filament is extremely impressive and more than exceeded it’s claims.
  • Upon review, we would highly recommend that this filament be submitted to ASTM testing by evaluating coupons at multiple temperature and infill settings.

Want to chat? Join our forum where we have initiated a thread about our experience!

https://re3d.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/205198503-TESTING3D-FUEL-APLA

~Happy Printing!

Samantha