Author Topic: Shapeways printed parts update  (Read 3265 times)

Offline gbritnell

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Shapeways printed parts update
« on: July 26, 2017, 01:18:35 PM »
I'm not quite sure what heading to put this topic under so if it needs to be moved by all means please do it.
As some of you are aware from my tiny Holt build I decided to have some of the parts printed through Shapeways. Shapeways is a company that will print your models in everything from plastic to Gold.
I created models of the parts I wanted in Solidworks and sent them the .stl files. The parts are the rocker arms, rocker posts and intake manifold. I opted to have them done in stainless steel, of which you can get an array of colors, natural, bronze, gunmetal etc. I thought the turnaround time was reasonable, 2 weeks, and the cost was very good considering the process that the parts have to go through to be created .
I received the parts this past week and at first glance they looked very nice. The rocker arms and pedestals were cast on a runner to try and keep things organized. Naturally the parts didn't include the drilled, tapped and reamed holes as these would be done once the parts were removed from the runners.
The first thing I did was to take a file to the port face on the intake manifold to flatten the surface for machining the carb mount, drilling and tapping. As I stroked the file across the surface it didn't make much of a cut, and this is one of my very good mill files used strictly for such purposes. I then took the rocker arm parts and with a more used file tried to knock one of the corners from the runner.
I really don't know what the stainless steel composition is and it's not really spelled out on their website but it's hard. Harder than any stock stainless steel material.
I'm sure that the parts could be cut with carbide tooling but trying to get 0-80 threads into it probably just wouldn't work.
The bottom line is don't order parts made from stainless steel unless they are basically finished parts. They also have a brass option and I will give that a try just for future reference. You can get aluminum but not for parts this small.
gbritnell
Talent unshared is talent wasted.

Offline crueby

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2017, 01:52:21 PM »
They do have some information on the materials page:

"This material is 3D printed 420 Stainless Steel infused with bronze, and has a final composition of approximately 60% steel and 40% bronze"

then later down they talk about how the steel parts are printed:

"To build steel models, special 3D printers deposit small drops of glue onto layers of stainless steel powder, one layer at a time, until the print is complete. We carefully remove these models from the printer. At this stage of the process, the objects are very fragile, similar to wet sand. The models then go through an infusion process that replaces the glue with bronze, creating a full metal product. Models are then processed to achieve your desired finish, sprayed with a sealant, and shipped to you."

The MSDS page gives more details:
https://static1.sw-cdn.net/files/cms/materials/steel_data_sheet.pdf


I have a 4" diameter part coming later this week, a version of the front nameplate from my Lombard boiler. Had that done in plastic to start, to see if I had the whole process figured out. Depending how that looks, I might get one done in steel or brass as a nameplate for the display base for the model. Will post pics when it arrives.

Offline Ye-Ole Steam Dude

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2017, 02:23:29 PM »
Just from the photos here, all the parts sure look nice. Good to know about the hardness of their stainless process. Thanks for sharing this info.

Thomas

Offline Vixen

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2017, 02:42:10 PM »
How do Shapeways charge? Is it by the amount of material used or by the sprue length? Is this effected by material type?

An indication of the price of your latest complete job or for the single sprue of rocker arms would be very useful information. I could then see if I could afford to have some parts made in USA then shipped to the UK.

Do you have a link for Shapeways?

Just thinking and dreaming.

Mike

It is the journey that matters, not the destination

Offline gbritnell

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2017, 03:04:20 PM »
Hi Mike,
Here's the link to Shapeways.
https://www.shapeways.com/
I paid $34.00 for the parts you see in the photos.
gbritnell
Talent unshared is talent wasted.

Offline kvom

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2017, 03:11:14 PM »
Mike,

imaterialize is an EU based company that does similar work to Shapeways.  Looks as if falt-rate UPS shipping to the UK is about 8 euros.

Offline Vixen

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2017, 03:12:15 PM »
Thanks for the link. I am sure I could have found it myself, but it makes this topic complete and stand alone

That price is very good. You could pay half that for the stock material and then spend hours machining most of it into chips.

Mike
It is the journey that matters, not the destination

Offline Vixen

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2017, 03:19:39 PM »
Now that I know the process is affordable, I can contact imaterialize or search for other such companies closer to home.
However, the shipping is only 8 euros, much the same as between European countries. So I guess it makes sense to go with Shapeways, as we know they do good reliable work. Reputation is everything

Mike
It is the journey that matters, not the destination

Offline kvom

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2017, 03:21:47 PM »
I did notice that the stainless for imaterialize is 316L rather than the 420+bronze, so it's probably a lot softer if machining is needed afterwards.

Offline Vixen

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2017, 03:59:41 PM »
OK, 316L cannot be hardened but it's still not the nicest of materials to machine.

I was thinking about the camshaft finger followers for the Mercedes engines, There are 32 per engine and then there are two engines. It would take a year to machine them all, so sinterring makes perfect sense to me. For my application, I was thinking of a bearing bronze or PB. There is only one 4.0mm hole to finish, perhaps I could get that printed just under size, then drill/reamer to the required fit.

This could be my perfect answer, so thanks for starting the thread

MIke
It is the journey that matters, not the destination

Offline tvoght

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2017, 04:30:19 PM »
An important data point, George. Thanks for "taking one for the team".

--Tim

Offline Dan Rowe

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Re: Shapeways printed parts update
« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2017, 05:02:45 PM »
George,
I have tapped the Shapeways SS with a 0-80 form tap. It was not fun but it did work. That stuff is very hard to work.

I have also worked the bronze alloy and it is easy to file machine and tap.

Dan
ShaylocoDan