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metal scarab [message #7698] Mon, 09 November 2009 19:29 UTC Go to next message
avatar dadrummond  is currently offline dadrummond
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Scarab is finally here! Few people have ever been so enthused about a dung beetle as yours truly.

This is my first 3D model (after the tutorials) and first Shapeways print of my own work (though I did some testing in advance). I'm thrilled with how it turned out.

The goal is to make a biological artifact, something recognizable, even cliche, that can still generate a little surprise. Judge for yourself.

index.php?t=getfile&id=1752&private=0
index.php?t=getfile&id=1748&private=0
index.php?t=getfile&id=1749&private=0

The design is original and all-manual, built from primitives in Blender (no scans).

The current print is a test for a more ambitious piece with moving parts. I hope it's a good example of what the technology is capable of. The printer, the technicians, and the customer service folks did a marvelous job, which makes me excited to push on -- thank you, Shapeways!

index.php?t=getfile&id=1750&private=0

Some observations for designers (no real surprises):
- Anything with a clearance of less than about 0.5mm fused.
- The hind claws taper down to points that can easily pierce flesh -- the resolution on the machine is sensational -- and survived the polishing process, despite being no more than 0.2mm thick at the tip. I count myself lucky here; had the claws broken, it would have been my fault.
- Little bits of orangish support material are wedged into various cracks and crevices. Will take some detail work with a needle to get it out, but it's only noticeable from right up close.
- The head shell was not actually attached to anything in the model, but had clearances of less than 0.5mm all around and fused with the thorax shell. It appears to have settled a bit, hooding the eyes more than I'd intended. I'm going to put a strut in the model to try to more directly enforce relative geometry.
- The piece is hollow, but it's nice and heavy. Feels, uh, real.
- The printing layers are fairly obvious at this scale. I intend -- if I can get my courage up -- to sand and polish the outer shell. We'll see.

I've uploaded a revised model so that others can enjoy this little scarab if they like. (If you think there might be a market for such a thing, let me know!)
index.php?t=getfile&id=1751&private=0


[Updated on: Tue, 10 November 2009 04:37 UTC]


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Elytra on Shapeways: http://www.shapeways.com/shops/elytra
icon14.gif  Re: metal scarab [message #7699 is a reply to message #7698 ] Mon, 09 November 2009 21:13 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Magic is currently online Magic
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Wahoo...
This is your first model and it is all done "manually"?
Congratulations! I am really impressed! Thumbs Up
It reminds me a giant fly that acted as an ashtray that my parents had when I was young Smile
Something like this :
http://www.lodp.be/img/p/23-86-thickbox.jpg
It opened like this:
http://www.lodp.be/img/p/23-87-thickbox.jpg
But your design is far more detailed and far more beautiful... The legs in particular are so realistic!
I would really like to be able to make organic designs like this!

Just one question: if it is hollowed, may I ask where the hole is?


So many things to design, so little time...
Re: metal scarab [message #7702 is a reply to message #7699 ] Mon, 09 November 2009 23:29 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar dadrummond  is currently offline dadrummond
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Thanks for the kind words! One of the tricks I used in the design was to draw it on paper first to get the proportions and overall feel the way I wanted, then I drew it in 2D using Inkscape, and then I imported the Inkscape paths as SVG and used them as a blueprint for the 3D model (similar to the way that people are using car blueprints to model against in any number of Blender tutorials). Later I may take some snaps of the prep work, if that would help other newbies get started. I also read the forums here like a maniac, and determined that starting from scratch with a model I understood deeply was both the best way to learn and also the best way to avoid horrible non-manifold problems that seem to plague many newbies.

(Another "trick" was that I looked at hundreds of photographs of different species of the Scarabidae while doing the initial sketches...great for developing a feel for how things should look when you're stuck.)

The holes are everywhere, mostly near the head. The beetle is modeled more or less like an insect in a shell. Around the eyes and at the head/thorax junction, there's a hole about 1mm in diameter formed by the eye, the thorax, the shell, and various protuberances, which gives the clearest access to the central chamber. Also, right in the mouth is a narrow hole right between the palps (jaw feelers).

The moving parts I have in mind are like the fly's, only (in keeping with the spirit of the design) more biologically realistic. It will take me quite some time to do all the modeling and testing -- and it will be done in phases, where the current print is phase one -- so do stay tuned.

[Updated on: Tue, 10 November 2009 04:39 UTC]


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Elytra on Shapeways: http://www.shapeways.com/shops/elytra
Re: metal scarab [message #7703 is a reply to message #7702 ] Mon, 09 November 2009 23:55 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar gibell  is currently offline gibell
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Very nice!! Does it really look that yellowish? Perhaps the color cast is due to the flash or indoor lighting, as the quarter also has a yellow tint. Isn't it basically "steel colored"?
Re: metal scarab [message #7704 is a reply to message #7703 ] Tue, 10 November 2009 03:37 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar dadrummond  is currently offline dadrummond
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Thanks! While the striking golden hue is indeed due to indoor lighting and flashless photography, the piece does have a genuine golden tint. The material is roughly 40% bronze, infiltrated into a fine network of stainless steel. What one gets is steel-colored bronze or bronze-colored steel. Either way, it's a nice warm color, a bit more inviting than steel.

[Updated on: Tue, 10 November 2009 04:33 UTC]


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Elytra on Shapeways: http://www.shapeways.com/shops/elytra
Re: metal scarab [message #7709 is a reply to message #7704 ] Tue, 10 November 2009 07:26 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar tree  is currently offline tree
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if its hollow (or easyly made hollow) you could buy a small 6 legged robot kit, and fit it inside.

are the wings movable?
icon14.gif  Re: metal scarab [message #7710 is a reply to message #7698 ] Tue, 10 November 2009 08:55 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Emm@nuel  is currently offline Emm@nuel
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Congratulations, this is beautiful !
Re: metal scarab [message #7711 is a reply to message #7710 ] Tue, 10 November 2009 09:34 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Inlite  is currently offline Inlite
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Truly awsome, if it wasnt $160 in ssteel I would buy one Very Happy Maybe a smaller version?
Re: metal scarab [message #7715 is a reply to message #7711 ] Tue, 10 November 2009 17:19 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar dadrummond  is currently offline dadrummond
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tree: The wing covers don't move...yet. Wink Patience!

Emm@nuel: Thank you so much!

Inlite: Thanks! I can definitely make this one cheaper by thinning the parts and removing some stuff on the inside (like, it's got a full pair of jaws that you basically can't see). I can probably get a full-size metal version down into the $90 range. What price would make it accessible for you, knowing that details will have to suffer as I scale down (and details are part of the appeal, I expect)? I'm happy to give it a go, and won't be satisfied myself unless the scaled-down version still feels like something of quality.


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Elytra on Shapeways: http://www.shapeways.com/shops/elytra
Re: metal scarab [message #7716 is a reply to message #7698 ] Tue, 10 November 2009 17:49 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Youknowwho4eva  is currently offline Youknowwho4eva
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I think a scaled down version where the legs are just details on the bottom face of the body, so you can get a little more mass out of there would be acceptable. I really like this, not something I would buy myself but very nice. Maybe if you gave it some functionality, like a ring box, or a charm for a necklace. Right now it just says specialty paper weight. Definitely reminds me of the one "Mummy" movie where the jade scarabs shed there jade cover and start attacking.


I learned a long time ago the wisest thing I can do is be on my own side, be an advocate for myself and others like me. -Maya Angelou
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Re: metal scarab [message #7775 is a reply to message #7698 ] Mon, 16 November 2009 13:24 UTC Go to previous message
avatar SellusionStar  is currently offline SellusionStar
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Awesome work!
This one looks really good Razz

 
   
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