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Some links about me. Many of my 3D designs are free. I also post on Google+ and in another blog, oz4.us
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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

How to run a (Cura) Python plugin on STL files without Cura?

Here is a geekier post about how to tweak Cura plugins and convert them to standalone Python scripts that post-process your g-code without Cura nor Skeinforge.

After I designed and used my wood gradient plugin, people naturally started to ask for the source code. I was a bit lazy first, because it was made for Cura 12.08: the patch I released was not very convenient, and Cura had evolved with a better and simpler plugin system, and included my own plugin.

Then, I got the time to fix it. Here is how I converted it to a standalone Python script that runs on its own, asking nothing to nobody.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Molding and casting with a 3D printer

Printing a mold and/or lost wax casting

Or how a 3D printer also opens the way to semi-industrial homemade objects beyond artistic sculptures!

Indeed, a 3D printer can be used indirectly, to print a mold of the object and not the object itself. The print is used as a "shape", and the final object is made of something else that could not be printed directly such as aluminum or silicone.

Molding is also useful to produce small batches of objects (even out of plastic), in a way which is much quicker than by 3D-printing. 3D printers are only rapid prototyping machines not ready for mass production.

Ron Thompson explains clearly how he made his aluminum heating block for his gravity filament extruder:
here is a two-part oil-bonded sand mold, rammed around the above 3D-printed orange plastic shapes.