RaymondRife
This is a bit unusual for a blacksmiths forum, but it may interest someone.

So I've acquired a few bars of known quality steel (1084, 1095 & 9260) and some martensitic SS and I'm not really set up to do much with it yet except cut some blanks. So in an effort to make the most out of the steel I wanted some cutting templates so I (hopefully) don't butcher any metal and waste it.

II thought I'd make some designs for templates but while I was doing so I thought why not just print the whole knife and see how it feels in the hand before I even cut any metal. The 3D printer does the work so it's no harder to print a template than it is to print the whole thing.

This was designed with Onshape and printed in PLA with a TEVO Tornado.
knife.png  There's no cutting edge as I haven't decided on a grind yet. My knife design skill is still in its infancy but for a first attempt at a very simplified design it turned out quite well. As I get more skilled I'll add metal bolsters and refine the designs a lot but this will give me something to work from that will hopefully make a reasonable first knife.

knife2.png  This is how the templates looked after printing.
DSC_0474.jpg 
And everything fits together perfect. DSC_0473.jpg 
It has a really good feel in the hand & looks like it will be goer for my first knife. It's going to be a kitchen knife for my Mrs, she loves the feel of it. If it turns out well I'll have templates so I'll be able to replicate it and if I want I can upgrade the design very easily if I decide to make a better handle.

Sorry if this is out of place here, I know it's a bit unusual for a Blacksmiths forum & in some ways computer generated designs are not really in the grain of the craft. I just thought I'd make a post to help keep the forum ticking over and give people something new to read.

Cheers guys


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jmccustomknives
It's a neat concept to 3d print a prototype.

Rule #10;  "I can make that" translates to; "I'm to cheap to buy it new."

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Scrambler82
I great use for a 3D Printer.

What else have you printed ?
Do It Right The First Time !
GrevB
Location: SoCal, USA
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RaymondRife
Sorry for the slow reply I've been offline for a few weeks and missed your post.

I print spare parts mainly, it seems like almost everyone has something with a missing knob or broken handle etc and want a new one printed. I picked up a cheap drill press a few weeks ago and it had a missing knob on one of the arms that operates the chuck assembly, so I made new set so they'd all be the same. I've made quite a few hose fittings and adaptors too.

  I recently repaired a broken piece that fits around the drivers seat on my car and made a new fuel cap for a fuel container too. I've printed a few scale model cars for a guy too. It's good to have the option to fix things without having to hunt things down and better to not have to pay for them.
 Here's a model of the bracket for the broken part on the car seat.
bracket.png 

The plug I made to snap into the bracket
plug2.png 
The bracket screws to the seat and the plug snaps into the bracket and holds the old broken seat surround in place.

The fuel cap
underside.jpg  It's really good for those times when you need an obscure part to fit something and don't have a lathe or milling machine to make one.

I've also printed quite a few tools and things for the workshop ie soft jaws for my vices, center drilling jigs, router jigs, tools to press bearings into place, circle cutting tools, templates and guides etc.  It  can be a good way to increase precision and eliminate marking out errors, I tend to make jigs or templates for things I wouldn't have contemplated making a jig for in the past. It's just so easy design things and have a custom tool materialize in a few hours.
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Scrambler82
RR, wow, it looks great !

Do you design the pieces or do you scan them ?

What software do you use ?

I always look at the 3D Printers when I see one, but not something I want to get into at the moment.

A platform laser cutter would be good though, Computer, Scan part, Cutting Table, make piece... 2D though.

Looking good, we now know where to go to get that special small part made !


Do It Right The First Time !
GrevB
Location: SoCal, USA
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Mike Westbrook
Start making and selling nozzles for these damn Al gore gas cans we have now !!!
Facebook (South mountain metal works)
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RaymondRife
Yeah, I do all my own design work using Onshape and export it as an stl file. Then I use a free program called Cura to slice the model (stl file) into layers, Cura outputs G-Code that I send to the printer and it does the rest. Laser cutters use a similar form of G-Code to generate the tool paths for the laser head. I'd like to make a water jet cutter or a laser cutter one day myself. It's all really simple these days and you don't really need to know how it all works, you can download almost anything you can think of from sites like thingiverse and slice them with Cura and be printing them within minutes.

I looked at 3D printing as a bit of a novelty for a while but I have 2 kids entering High School this year, so I wanted the printer to give them a bit of a head start. I just like to know how things work really. The parts are surprisingly tough, I saw a Tubal Cain vid on Youtube where he printed drive gears for a lathe from a similar plastic to what what I use (PLA) and did a load test on them to see if they would strip and the motor stalled before they spat any teeth out.

Some of the industrial 3D printers print 100% metal using laser sintering (SLS) and some of the newer ones print metal infused with plastic and then the parts are washed and then sintered in a kiln to bake the plastic out and leave a 100% metal part.


It seems to be the way manufacturing is heading.

So here in Australia it's been 43 degrees Celsius (about 110 Fahrenheit)  outside nearly every day and much hotter in the shed, it's just too hot to get out there and run the forge. So playing around with the 3D printer satisfies my urge to make things while it's too hot outside.

@Mike Westbrook - I'm not sure what an Al Gore gas can is ,we don't have them in Australia and a websearch just turned up a lot of stuff about global warming.
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Mike Westbrook
Basically our government screwed up a gas can so it takes 45 minutes to fill anything all in the name of reducing evaporative emissions from a fuel can it's so bad I tried to import a Husqvarna Combi can for my saws from Sweden and it got stopped in customs and returned so he put it inside a box that originally had some kind of Swiss chocolate in it came right on through ! ..........either way those printers are quite amazing cool stuff
Facebook (South mountain metal works)
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RaymondRife
Ah I see. Al Gore's house uses enough power to run a suburban street but everyone else has to make sacrifices for the planet.

That sounds like the same sort of bureaucratic B.S. that's taking over our country too. We have some of the worlds largest coal deposits and our politicians want to close all the coal fired power stations and put nuclear reactors everywhere. Power costs so much it's becoming almost a luxury here.  We also have more sun and unused land than most countries but solar power isn't considered a valid option.
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eutrophicated1
What are the common materials that your printer can work with?  Would Doug Marcaida say, "Very well done, but will it cut?"  small joke only  I, for one will be very interested to see where lower cost 3D metal printing goes from here.  Thanks.
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