Austin Wilson and Neil Underwood from the North Carolina makerspace Fablocker invented a great, simple process for smoothing out 3D prints using evaporated nail-polish remover in a large jar. The process produces a beautiful finish and sidesteps a bunch of dumb patents for polishing 3D printing output. They're still experimenting with the details, and the fact that the first experiments turned out such great looking pieces is cause for excitement about where this will go when it's fully refined.
ABS-based printed parts are placed in the jar with the acetone and heated to 90 degrees Celsius on the hot plate. Acetone has a low evaporation point, but is heavier than air so the process creates a small cloud around the model which melts the surface, slowly smoothing it to a mirror finish. After a couple hours, the parts solidify, can be removed, and be displayed with pride.
...Since their initial success the duo has been experimenting with the process by controlling temperature ranges and exposure times, but there are still many tests to be conducted. One area in need of more research is measuring how the process impacts the physical properties of the parts. “It doesn’t really seem to change the shape of objects or alter the dimensions, but we haven’t had time to do test cubes and measure them with calipers,” says Wilson. “If anything the smoothing out process might make things work better. People have tried to use 3-D printed models as bushings and axels before, but they never work because they’re too rough.”
Slick Trick Adds Much-Needed Shine to 3-D Printed Parts [Joseph Flaherty/Wired]
Alex Wood is an addict but won’t give up his smartphone. But he has five strategies for limiting its control over him: “I used to wake up tired. My body would ache and my head felt sore, like waking up with a hangover. Finally, I took control, like attending an AA class for addicts, I […]
We just got the Sport model of the EPIKGO hoverboard at my office. Besides being terribly chic, it’s apparently bulletproof.
Ok, it’s not just solar powered. It’s also an anti-theft, waterproof marvel that keeps my phone’s power bar from ever getting into the red.Sure the idea seems obvious now – tuck a gigantic solar powered battery pack into an exposed slot and turn the wearer into a walking energy harvester. Simple maybe, but I didn’t […]
Thread count isn’t like one of those deceiving metrics like camera megapixels or Facebook friends—more threads are always better if you can afford them. If price was no object, we would all be snoozing soundly bundled up in 1.8 kilo-thread sheets every single night. Guess what? Price doesn’t have to be an object with this […]
Maybe it’s entirely because of podcast ads, but drag-and-drop tools like Squarespace have gotten immensely popular in recent years. While it’s definitely a great tool for any non-coders who want to get a small website up and running quickly, managing content with a primarily visual interface can become a pain once you have more than […]
When you can’t wait for the world’s longest meeting to end, the mindless leg bouncing makes your boredom obvious and just annoys everybody else. Everyone knows the TPS reports need the damn cover sheet, but some sadistic colleague keeps forgetting, probably on purpose just to eat into your lunch hour. Enough is enough!While serving a […]