Posts Tagged ‘rhino’

Using Thingiverse For Awareness

Posted by on Wednesday, June 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

Thingiverse user sirmakesalot has been busy in the last month, with several good uploads, and a few more soon, he tells us.

I really like one of his recent Thingiverse additions in particular, this three-legged chair.

3 legged chair by sirmakesalot


This is especially cool for a couple reasons. The first is why Greg made it. As a person with a disability, he wanted to draw attention to the idea of something being disabled. This chair, as he puts it, was “born without one leg.” It turns out this was a project that became real furniture in his home (the final product is a beauty, go check it out), and the chair is fully functional. It stands upright without the need for the rest of the fourth leg.

This use of Thingiverse for awareness is interesting. There are a few other examples, and I bet we’ll see a lot more in the future.

The other cool thing is that Greg didn’t design this to make on a MakerBot. He designed it in Rhino for a class and ultimately made it out of wood. However, he shared the design file with the world on Thingiverse and now someone could easily MakerBot it if they wanted to. The original may be in Greg’s living room, but you can have a sirmakesalot 3 legged chair of your very own.


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Teen MakerBot Prototyping Workshops at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum

Posted by on Wednesday, April 20, 2011 in Uncategorized
YouTube Preview Image

You might remember a few weeks ago when we announced that the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, had acquired a Thing-O-Matic. Well, registration is now open for a FREE Cooper-Hewitt workshop for teens, focused on prototyping with a MakerBot. Starting on April 30th, the workshop will consist of five hands-on sessions led by MakerBot’s Matt and Mike: four at Tekserve, with a fifth hosted by MakerBot in the BotCave and BotFarm for final prints and critiques.

For more information, take a look at the Cooper-Hewitt posting for the series here. Very limited slots, so register quickly!

Workshop participants will learn to:

  • Design and print prototypes in 3-D.
  • Use 3-D apps like RhinoBlender and brand-new Tinkercad. (We are going to tune our choices a bit based on experience of teens participating.)
  • Assemble, modify, and troubleshoot Makerbot hardware and software.

Mike and I are looking forward to team teaching this series. Also, we will be sharing our curriculum, tips & tricks, and student models-in-progress with the MakerBot community here and at Thingiverse for those of you who don’t live in NYC and will miss out on this opportunity.

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3D Design Software 101

Heart Gears by emmett (Opened in Wings3D)

While MakerBot Operators are more than happy to print the thousands of incredible objects posted to Thingiverse, eventually many catch the design bug and reach out for guidance for how to get started designing models.

Your mission: to create a solid, manifold (“watertight”) STL-formatted file for importing into ReplicatorG. STL, created as the format for stereolithographic CAD files, is a ubiquitous format, so the design application options are vast. ReplicatorG also offers experimental OBJ and Collada file import capability — though the files are then converted into STL files. (You can open dozens of file formats in MeshLab, netfabb Studio Basic or similar 3D swiss army knife tools — and then export as binary or ASCII STL files, opening up even more models to ReplicatorG.)

Choosing Your Hammer

8-bit Heart by schmarty ( image)

For design software, there are many powerful free and open source design tools for us to introduce to Operators. Favorites include, Sketchup, OpenSCAD, Wings3D, and Blender. We have heard about but not experimented much with POV-ray (excellent tutorials here), FreeCAD, HeeksCAD, and Art of Illusion — apps that have serious fans in the 3D printing world.

Plastruder MK5 Solidworks 2011 Model by kai

For commercial solid CAD apps: Rhino (Mac users — jump on the free beta), Autodesk Autocad, Inventor, Creo, and SolidWorks are probably the biggest players in the field. But perhaps you don’t have upwards of $1k to spend on design software? Try the highly-capable $99 Alibre Personal Edition, Cheetah3D (mac only), or bonzai3d.

Below the fold is a handy five step exercise for brand new designers to get their feet wet with 3D modeling.

Read the rest of this entry »

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