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We <3 the MakerBot Operators: Mark Durbin (United Kingdom)

Mark Durbin's Busy Modeling Station

Recent MakerBot Operator Mark Durbin (MakeALot at Thingiverse) has been shaking up the Thingiverse scene with a tremendous number of models and prints uploaded since January of this year when he put together his MakerBot Thing-O-Matic kit. In particular, we have him to thank for a number of the now iconic braided and knotted vessels, statuettes, and bracelets that he has been coaxing out of OpenSCAD. His more intricate designs have become key models MakerBot Operators with Stepstruder MK6s use for challenging their stepper extruders to print multiple disconnected regions: reversal techniques for string-free printing to the max!

I emailed Mark around the time he released his second spiral cup to ask him about his working process and tools.

A Study in Spirals

Looking at the linear and rotated extrusions in the OpenSCAD manual, I thought it might be interesting to combine both of these, imagining a wavy line going round in a circle, but of course, “twist” isn’t available on the rotated extrusion.  I tried to create one with a section of linear extrusion, laid it on its side and rotated copies of it about 360 degrees, but it didn’t look good. While playing with this, the idea of the pencil cup came to me, originally with all the spirals going in the same direction, but then I thought of flipping each alternate one to link them, so I fiddled about with the distances and the angles of rotation for a while and when it looked right, I added a cylinder for a base and a torus for a top edge. The spirals themselves intruded into the centre and out of the cup a long way, so I flattered them using the scale command. I was so pleased with the result, I set it printing and published it at the same time.

Error - could not find Thing 6917.

Much more interview, after the fold! Read the rest of this entry »

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