Thursday, February 24, 2011

Update on hte Laffly S-20

As I posted  2 weeks ago, I got my laffly truck wheels rapid-prototyped(additive manufacturing). I finally got around to putting the main wheels on the truck

Truck with main wheels, next to Bolt Action
Early war German

The truck is really starting to take shape.  After the success of the wheels(I was really quite impressed with the detail & smooth surface) , I decided I would try rapid-prototyping the entire engine section. this section has nearly all of the fine detail on it, and is really the part I was worrying about building.  I'm a lot more exact and faster with Computer models then I am at actually scratch building, especially at particularly fine detail.  the engine section took me about 2.5-3 hours total time to do.  I'm not entirely sure if i could have actually have acheived it by entirely by hand, and certainly no to this level.
rendering of the front grill and engine block.

I'm currently using Shapeways to prototype.  I use the White Detail material(a photopolymer) and the detail is pretty good. Also,  unlike their more common(and cheaper) materials  they use, the white detail material gives a nice smooth surface. is not the best rapid prototyping business by far(in terms of detail produced), but you can't beat their prices. this engine block will cost me $7.40(USD or CDN, since they are effectively at par now)including shipping.. It helps that I hollowed out the engine compartment leaving ip open from the back(which you cannot see).  If I could could afford to get them done better, I would, but this method (so far) has been surprising good. Also, if it doesn't work out for some reason, I'm only out $7.40, instead of $15-30+shipping  i would be from most other rapid prototyping vendors.

now the one catch with is that the minimum order is $25. this isn't a huge deal for me though, since i have 20+ star ships of my own design that I can order to fill in the difference. and i have already ordered some of those ships, so i know they will turn out.

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