The surface is ok. It's not great and it's not REAL toy quality smooth. I wish it was. But it can't compare to a nicely done wax master.
The soldier figure was done with Ultra Detail and not fine, and that one was pretty rough. Until I cast it in color I couldn't see how much "Grain" there was in it. I had to scrap that mold and sand the 3d print. The tank was done in FUD and is way better, but there are still odd patterns like a Grain on some sides, then it's smooth on the other side. It's strangely inconsistent. But it's good enough and way better than years ago when I last investigated this process.
My big problem is that I'm making such small detail if I try and really sand these things, I'll lose all the detail. I'm just hoping that as time goes on this stuff will get smoother and smoother, which it will www.rivetwars.com
They even have conventions from time to time. You might be able to sell pre-painted versions of your work on some such sites or gain a slightly bigger following through advertising news. I don't think they have to be vinyl but just artistic custom toys per say.
FUD seems to print clear without the fused support material or "fuzzies" with flat surfaces with little polygons. Seems curved/detailed surfaces especially with tons of polys and more details bring out the fuzzie beast!
Roger - yeah I got my start watching toybreak, a designer toy type podcast. I'd love to sell more of these as time goes by. I'm going to NYcomicon and I plan to bring some stuff to show around. And thanks for the kind words. Yeah the fuzzies kind of suck when you get them but as you say, I'm sure they'll work it out. I just sent in a new toy to get printed. I'm really excited to see how it comes out.
Glenn - Thanks. I have been meaning to make a tutorial but I've been spending my little bit of free time just making stuff. I will do it at some point. If you're interested go to http://www.smooth-on.com/ They have a great starter kit and tutorials. I got the starter kit and was making castings in no time.
Just got my tank print. It's pretty insane. Just love it. Need to figure out how I'm going to sand it smooth without losing all the detail, especially the rivets. I can't wait until 3d printing at this detail level is smooth. Here's some pics.