Printed 608 BB bearing by TheRooster
Some days, such as today, I love being wrong.
The other day I suggested printing a 608 bearing using 4.5mm BB’s would be impractical given the dimensions of a standard bearing. There were a number of very well thought out responses from Tre3 and TheRooster to my wild12 accusations.3
Among other excellent points, Tre3 pointed out that with careful purchasing you can find ball bearings as low as $0.05 per bearing. 4 That’s pretty dang low. TheRooster said he was able to pick up 2500 zinc plated steel BB’s for $4 from his local big-box store. That’s about $1.70 for all 53 bearings required for a RepRap. Cheap BB’s are all well and good – but you’d still need to find a way to shoe-horn them into a printed 608 sized shell.
And that’s exactly what TheRooster did – he designed, printed, and assembled a 608 sized bearing utilizing those 4.5mm BB’s as the ball bearings. I cannot wait to try this design out. I realize the labor costs involved in creating your own ball bearings is probably prohibitive.
I think this misses the central questions:
- Just how far can you push a 3D printer?
- When you can make nearly any arbitrary shape out of plastic, just what are the limits?
- What is possible once your biggest cost is the time required to assemble the parts in front of you?
Tre3: I was going to take you up on your offer to test my plastic bead bearings, but they are officially garbage now that I’ve seen TheRooster’s improvement. However, I would love to see how TheRooster’s printed ball bearings using BB’s match up to your tests. Are you guys up for the challenge?
- Drunken? Intoxicated? [↩]
- BUI – blogging under the influence! [↩]
- If I were really smart, I would claim that this was a bit of slight-of-hand reverse-psychology on my part. Alas, I am just not so clever. Or devious. [↩]
- Given that each bearing requires roughly 15-20 balls and there are 53 bearings in a RepRap, this comes to $39.75 for the lot. [↩]
|Tagged with||ball bearing, bb, bb bearing, bb's, bearing, printed ball bearing, printed bearing||5 comments|