Multiple parts per file, allowed or not?

Discussion in 'Technologies and Hardware' started by Dexter, Oct 25, 2011.

  1. Dexter
    Dexter New Member
    Hi all,

    I am awaiting a big order of some of my models which have multiple separate items in them.
    It's not clear to me if multiple parts per file are allowed or not. I have read the design rules and the blog post about the new price structure, but it is not explicitely mentioned there, or maybe I overlooked it. But in on of the reactions on the blog it says '...You mentioned in the webcast that we are to honor the gentlemen's agreement of not including multiple items in one file to avoid the handling fee per item...'
    I don't know about the webcast and I don't want to rely on gentlements agreements. I prefer clear rulings.
    It's not about the price really, I Just would like to be able to create, upload and order sets of items.

    Best regards,
  2. Magic
    Magic Well-Known Member
    Clear rules will always be more restrictive than a gentlemen agreement.
    If you want a clear rule, the answer would probably be "no multiple parts are allowed except for things that goes by pair (like earrings)".
    If you really feel more comfortable with this clear rule, feel free to follow it, but, please, do not oblige everybody to do so by requiring clear rules... ;)

    Last edited: Oct 26, 2011
  3. Dexter
    Dexter New Member
    Hi Magic,

    Yes I see what you mean. But I don't need rules made up by you or me. It is not about me feeling comfortable. I just don't want my customer to place an order and then get the message that the models are unprintable, because of some hidden agreements. I do want to follow shapeways rules or agreements. But what are they? Where can I find them?

  4. Youknowwho4eva
    Youknowwho4eva Shapeways Employee Community Team
    Mark, it depends on the material. Silver no. Everything else is allowed but abuse of this will cause that to change. Stainless is preferred to not have multiple parts, and the others are preferred to be connected on in a cage of some sorts. As magic said, right now it's more of an unwritten rule. But if it's abused it will be written.

    See here for more details mp;start=0&
  5. Dexter
    Dexter New Member
    Sorry but I still don't understand. If it is allowed, how can it be abused? I don't want to be thickheaded about this but what do I tell my customer? Place your 1200 dollar order and hope for the best?
    I contacted Shapeways support, hopefully they will look at my models and tell me what to do.

    regards, Mark.
  6. duann
    duann New Member
    Hi Mark,

    Currently, an order of a single file will not be rejected for having multiple parts.

    We do ask that you as a rule have one part per file, unless it is a pair of earrings, cufflinks or interlocking parts.

    We are monitoring the number and type of orders that have multiple, separate parts in a single file, if we feel that it is happening too often and it starts to distort our pricing structure, we will need to address this.

    The handling fee is in place to cover the costs of production, if the handling fee is subverted, we do not cover the cost of production.

    in short, we ask that you have one part per file.

  7. Youknowwho4eva
    Youknowwho4eva Shapeways Employee Community Team
    Ok non-abuse would be a few parts in a file for a single item, separate but interlocking parts (like chain mail), parts in a cage or attached together. Abuse would be, you want 20 items in your own shop so you put them in one file to only pay one handling fee. And even in the non-abuse stuff, those things take more labor. More labor more cost, so if every order had an item like that either the rule would change or costs would go up.
  8. Dexter
    Dexter New Member
    Thank you all, it's clear now that my models in question are very abusive :confused I'll remove them and do separate uploads.

    thanks, Mark.
  9. duann
    duann New Member
    Thanks Mark

    I really appreciate your honesty.
  10. Unistrut
    Unistrut New Member
    So if I have a model with multiple parts (a robot arm that the end user assembles and poses for example) I should attach them to each other with a bit of sprue? Is sprue enough? I really want to keep it simple and avoid having to direct folks to order half a dozen parts for a model, but I also don't want to piss off the printers. If sprue isn't enough, what should I do?

  11. stonysmith
    stonysmith Well-Known Member Moderator
    The sprue is acceptable as long as it makes holds all the parts securely, essentially making them one (albiet complex part).

    I recently asked Customer Service to check this model: Their request with it was to make the original sprue a bit thicker, and to make sure that the wheel supports were thick enough to survive cleaning.

    The other choice is to include all the parts in a (semi) solid bounding box. This model: in the crate is much more acceptable to the production team than the two peices were as separate parts. (the main peice there is only a 1/4 inch cube)

    The whole point here is that super small parts (of which I am a major offender) are extremely time consuming. Connecting units together with sprues collects them into larger peices that can be handled with much less work than the items themselves.

    Now, one note: Before we get handed down hard rules.. please tell me "hey .. this model requires extra handling". I'll be happy to fix any of my models that are particularly troublesome. Simply put, we need more communication with/from the production team.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2011