3d Printed Parts

  • 21 Jul 2022 04:24
    Reply # 12855841 on 12855158

    Those trim pieces look great Nick, it looks like you used every last centimetre of the print-bed to make them :-)

    We're also just finishing our schooner refit and have also found 3D printing really useful for some jobs.  I'm just starting to sew our sails, while I'm doing that our 3D printer is churning out batten inserts in the background.  We also made some adapters that let you use lower power consumption (and cost) computer fans in place of bilge blowers.  The one pictured runs whenever our fridge compressor runs drawing out hot air and pulling in cooler air from the bilge.  Our cutlery tray is also 3D printed to let us cram as much as we can into every last bit of space.

    Most of our projects are now printed with PETG as it is UV resistant and not much more difficult to print with than PLA, mostly I find it likes to print slower.

    Pics of the projects below.

    5 files
    Last modified: 21 Jul 2022 17:10 | Anonymous member
  • 20 Jul 2022 16:59
    Message # 12855158

    Although my wife and I have have been rebuilding our schooner for the last four years, I do not consider myself a boat builder. I am a sailor…rebuilding is just the path we have chosen to take for sailing. 3d printing is an option for boat parts that some may not be familiar with for completing your projects. For us, the 3d printer was just what we needed.

    One of the last tasks on our rebuild list was to make two identical interior trim pieces that bridged the gap between the ceiling (I’m not sure what it’s called on a boat) and the cabin top where the deck prisms are mounted. We have 2 inches (51mm) of insulation between the two that needed to be bridged.

    There are many options for making those parts. One of the options would have been to make them out of wood using epoxy and fiberglass for strength. I imagined that making them out of wood would take me a good part of a full day to get the wood, epoxy, fiberglass, design them, and then start making them. Then, I’d need to sand it, paint it, wait for epoxy to cure and so forth. It probably would have taken three days or more depending on other tasks.

    Aboard Glacier Gem, we have very few wooden parts. It was an easy decision to make the prism trim parts out of 3d printed plastic. I used grey colored PLA plastic, because I already had it loaded into the printer and it matched our interior. The 3d print fabrication took 20-25 minutes to measure and draw in a 3d CAD program. It took roughly 10 hours to print, but was accomplished while I was sleeping during the night. It took 5 minutes to install. Now we have two interior trim pieces that would have been time consuming and troublesome for us to fabricate with other methods.

    3d printers have a multitude of different materials to use for printing and in all different colors. You can make anything from 3d printed “wood” to metals. In fact, many navies worldwide are using 3d printers (also called additive manufacturing) instead of traditional machining tools like lathes and mills. This saves them the storage of both raw material and spare part inventories. When they need a metal part they simply choose the part they would like to make, and tell the machine to print it. Unfortunately metal 3d printers are way out of the price range of our cruising budget, but we were able to get a reasonably priced 3d printer kit and assemble it ourselves for a different project we have been working on.

    Here are some photos of the trim parts attached below: 

    4 files
    Last modified: 20 Jul 2022 17:16 | Anonymous
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