matt_d10

Matt’s 3D printing workbench...

14 posts in this topic

Well I thought it was about time I started a workbench thread, hoping that it will spur on my modelling a bit!

Yesterday I bit the bullet and ordered a 3D printer. After a bit of research and shopping around I went for a wanhao duplicator i3 mini. There are several other printers that all look suspiciously similar (that’s the Chinese market for you!) so there should be reasonably good support available.

This was slightly more expensive than other models I was looking at, but I liked that it was a small size and wouldn’t look too bad sat on my desk (compared to some other examples!)


Within an hour of it being delivered I’m up and running and it’s currently printing a test print from the sd card, although I have no idea what it is yet! 

It’s not got the best specs, but I wanted something that I can have a play around with and print some test prints and that sort of thing. I also paid slightly more and ordered it from amazon so I can always send it back if it breaks!

Hopefully this will spur me on to get back into modelling. I will almost certainly be going back to T gauge which I’ve been following for a few years now, but I’ve recently got hold of a bit of Z gauge stuff too (thanks to a few trips to Japan with work).

If anyone wants any more info let me know, but I’ll report back the success of the initial print when it’s complete!

Matt

samw and Philip like this

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Well, surely not a big investement, now it's up to see what the result will be :) (:

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Posted (edited)

Well first results are promising! I'm very happy with how easy the printer was to get going and get something useful out of it. Once I'd sorted some bed adhesion problems we were away!

Now the test print...I appreciate these are tweaked to print as best as possible with the material provided but I am very happy with the results! There's a pic below...

As a real test I printed my T Gauge class 450 bodyshell. I'd designed this to print in FUD from shapeways but was supposed to be a basic bodyshell ready to accept decals or similar. It's come out surprisingly well with smooth sides, there's just a small bit of detailing on the roof missing but I think this is down to limitations with the printer. Still, it's perfect as a test print!

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Edited by matt_d10
Adding image links
hallmodelrailways likes this

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Looks great matt,

Would love to get one myself, so excited to see your results!

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Well, first of all I don't know what your model should look like then it's quite difficult to judge from the picture you put, maybe seen from a different angle would help, but the essential is that you're satisfied. :) (:

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So I've been away for a few days but did another test print this evening...this time of a OO9 slate wagon (not my own design, something I found online which I could just get printing).

I had a bit of an issue with bed adhesion again (may look into upgrading to a heated bed) but second time around it stuck. However, I thought I'd be clever and turn the printing speed up to speed up the process... not my best idea. The base of a few parts which were key supports came out far too weak to be used, which was a shame. But it's all a learning process.

Back to designing things that I actually want to print now and see how I get on!

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 So I’ve not progressed all that much since my last post. I’ve printed a few things from thingiverse (an online archive of 3D modela ready to print) which included a 009 slate wagon and a docklands light railway multiple unit.

The slate wagon came out ok but I tried to be a bit clever and increased the print speed for the first few layers...this made the coupling points completely unusable.

The docklands unit didn’t work at all (the file was the wrong size so needed scaling and it all got a bit messy).

So learning points: accept that prints take time and design it yourself. I am getting to know the limitations of the printer now so I can begin to design models taking that into account.

So what are my plans...well I’ve got an urge for N scale narrow gauge (Nn3) and a Z scale docklands light railway layout (to take advantage of the rokuhan small radius track).

I’m off to Tokyo tomorrow for work so will be popping in to the rokuhan Tokyo shop to pick up a few of their “shorty” motorised chassis (at a tenner each I might get a few) and some trailer cars to butcher for their wheels; as well as some more Z track. The amount of model shops in Tokyo is simply mind boggling and there are always bargains to be had. All manner of kato and tomix chassis are available at very good prices...it’s a shame I stopped modelling N gauge. Unfortunately importing it to sell on above board removes any cost advantage! (I have looked into it! Haha)

Anyway, I’ll post more progress as it comes! And if anyone wants pictures from Tokyo model shops let me know, I’ll happily share!

Matt

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Posted (edited)

Well, I suppose everyone will be happy to see what a japanese model shop looks like ... or at least  I am ;) (;!

Edited by Franco
Philip likes this

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16 hours ago, Franco said:

Well, I suppose everyone will be happy to see what a japanese model shop looks like ... or at least  I am ;) (;!

Sure will be!

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Well I got back yesterday (just 2 days there unfortunately) so spent most of it recovering, but not before running in (or playing with...) my new purchases!

First was the rokuhan shorty chassis I wanted (I bought 2), a trailer car, a Kiha style body and a loop of track. I wasn’t intending on getting either the track or body, but the prices are so reasonable and it looks slightly better than just a bare chassis! The loop of track is 45mm radius, seriously tiny stuff!

As you’d expect, it all ran floorlessly out of the pack. It’s rather simplistic but it’s based on the N gauge “B train” which means modellers can model full trains in considerably smaller lengths. The range available in N is quite unbelievable and I had to resist a purchase!

Here’s how it looks all set up! I can’t think of many applications for actual modelling, but it’s a bit of fun!

loop.jpgoverview.jpg

As promised here are a couple of pics of some model shops! I’ll start my saying they do things a little differently to us! Most towns have one, in big cities there are usually several in close proximity to each other!

I initially visited the Rokuhan Tokyo showroom. They had the entire range as well as a large demonstrator layout (most larger shops have one). Despite the guy in there not speaking any English, before long we had the lights off running trains...

display.jpgdisplay 2.jpgdisplay 3.jpg

I then visited a couple of other shops, one of which was in a department store (a common thing!) and this is the sort of thing to expect...

chassis.jpgrokuhan.jpgshop.jpg

They have most N gauge track work available from both kato and tomix and most N gauge chassis from kato, tomytec etc. The N gauge range is simply mind blowing. Any Japanese stock in existence seems to be available (even as an unpowered model which you buy a chassis for!). HO seems somewhat more limited, you have more chance of finding Z gauge than HO in most shops! The scenic items are few and far between as I understand most Japanese people set up for a running session and then dismantle again at the end, fully scenic layouts that we know are a luxury!

Anyway, what's the plan? Well after some thorough "testing" I'll try and design some body shells in both Z gauge and N narrow gauge. Will start looking for some inspiration and see what I can come up with!

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2 hours ago, matt_d10 said:

 .... HO seems somewhat more limited, you have more chance of finding Z gauge than HO in most shops! The scenic items are few and far between as I understand most Japanese people set up for a running session and then dismantle again at the end, fully scenic layouts that we know are a luxury! ....

 

Well, for what I know of japanese houses, an HO layout would be like putting an O scale mainline layout in one of our apartments though I see quite a wide range of HO models inyour pictures. Are they SG or NG?

 

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There’s usually a shelf of standard gauge HO stock...mostly common stuff like Bullet trains and multiple units (in that shop there was that one shelf of HO you can see and 7/8 of N gauge). There’s a small amount of narrow gauge in the glass cabinet (the rest is Z) and there is sometimes some more obscure stuff from smaller manufacturers. The narrow gauge is almost all HOe.

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Posted (edited)

Not had a lot to post of late, work and life in general have been pretty relentless! However, I was recently in Hong Kong and stumbled across a tiny store selling scale models of their busses, ships and trams (and made me think of the excellent work on "All cars stop here"). There were plenty in OO scale, but what caught my eye were a couple that appeared to be smaller. There was no mention of scale but I took a gamble and for just under £6 later I was the proud owner of this...

http://www.80mbusmodel.com/eshop/photos/TT150519.jpg

Now luckily for me it's close enough to N scale (1:150) and using Z scale tracks gives close enough to the 1m gauge the trams use. So a few hours later pulling the moulded plastic apart has given me this...

https://youtu.be/92kwFTL76Ho

Now it's pretty crudely done at the moment so I'll need to design and print a proper chassis support. And those in the know will have spotted that the prototype trams are 4 wheelers and this is using a bo-bo chassis... well I'm not sure I can do much about that! And at a normal viewing height I'm hoping it won't be too obvious. Time will tell,,,

Edited by matt_d10
bad youtube link

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