Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

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phenoptix
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Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby phenoptix » Sun Jan 06, 2013 6:00 pm

Just logged onto the thingiverse for the first time in a couple of days and it seems in my short break that the Ford motor company have started publishing things!!
Image

http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:40257

I was thinking today whilst looking a my slightly crumpled passenger side wing mirror that I could really do with a 3D printer, as parts for an 84 VW Golf are becoming harder to get. This is hopefully the tip of the iceberg from Ford and maybe we'll see other car companies follow suit.

What would you print? One of my goals this year is to become the owner of a 3D printer and we'll also be launching a 3D printing service along with it.

xanthic
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby xanthic » Sun Jan 06, 2013 8:42 pm

Funny you mention that, as I thought of that middle of last year. My brother is keen on VW campervans and is in a similar position, where some parts are getting increasingly hard to find. I mentioned 3D printing some out, such as light fittings etc and he thought it'd be a good idea. Just need to get a decent printer and you'd be good to go. I think the resolution of the lower end printers wouldn't up to scratch, but the newer, more expensive hobby printers are probably good enough for production quality parts. You could also get a 3D laser scanner to input some of the more complex parts (I think I saw a basic, proprietary one for about £600).

dec0y7
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby dec0y7 » Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:26 am

The first thing I would want to print is this
www.shapeways.com/model/394091/propelle ... lsion.html

I first saw it on QI and just looks cool


The only thing that bothers me with 3D printing is the wiki gun for those that don't no its a 3Dprinted gun read more here www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2012 ... t-at-home/

I know most of the plans have been removed from the web but can still be found. Could put more guns into the hand of people that shouldn't have then and no one will ever no who have got then.

But other then that the world of 3D printing is going to get bigger and bigger and good things will come
tis Better to have tried and failed than never to have tried at all

I blame spelling errors and my writing skills or lack of...... On fred!!!!!! My blood clot (yes I really did name it lol)

vimes79
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby vimes79 » Mon Jan 07, 2013 8:33 pm

Thats super cool!Its amazing some of the things people are making on their CAD software and printing with their 3D Printers or milling with their desktop CNC's.

I also plan on getting a 3D printer this year, infact I am getting one. I am backing a new low-budget PLA/ABS printer called ROBO3D that is currently on Kickstarter and am about #18 on the list of pledges so mine should be getting here in about March/April all ready made and ready to go. I looked at others but for Price : Quality : Print Size the Robo3D seems like a winner! I am paying $475 for the printer set up for PLA and have added the extra kit to make it a PLA or ABS hybrid by swapping a few parts out (All the heat bed, extra parts and such) Its costing me about $650-700 depending on a change they may be making to the print Assembly and hot end.
Its just stupid money for a decent enough 3D Printer!
I know its not going to give the best results compared to $2000 machines, but for what I want - a printer to make protos on to perfect design before sending (if popular) for a production run AND also for making up parts, bumpers, fixings, mounts and such to enhance, mod or fix existing things or likewise to new builds that are mainly made from Laser cut material but need some more detailed 3D parts.

Check it out here : http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1682938109/robo-3d-printer

My main use for this is to A. Print out cool things from Thingyverse and B. Do my own fast prototyping on ideas, perfect then send files to be priced up by a plastics company - I was so amazed at how cheap models (like the Arduino portable platform I was playing with in December) and sets of parts are to have made in production runs of 50-100 upwards, with a good idea you could make a killing in profit if you found a gap in the market or could improve an existing product the real cost is in the prototyping etc unless of course you have your own 3D printer or have friends working for plastics companies!

The reason I am going for a cheaper option for a 3D printer is that my #1 goal this year is to get the £2500-£3000 together to buy a British Built (or at least UK put together and tested to UK standards) laser cutter. I have priced some options up and for £2500-£3000 I can buy a good quality A4 cut size cutter or slightly lower quality but bigger cut size cutter and engraver from a decent UK outfit, with a fair size bed and it will also allow for all the extras needed for cooling and venting etc.. Also sticking with a company and make like this one also keeps the replacement parts cost lower. When im nearer my goal I will need to speak with Ben about how he went about sourcing his (although im guessing his cost more than £2500) and get as much advise as possible before buying.

I have far too many ideas in my head and that I see daily on Thingyverse and then imagine how to improve them and market them and that I have a market for imeadatly just through networks of friends, family and co-workers etc as well as the South Wests best Craft Market on my doorstep twice a week! I dont want to have to rely on someone else and take up their time and precious meters on their Laser, I know Ben has kindly offered time on his laser for cutting now through the site but I am very concise about over-using his time and patience!!! That's the last thing I want to do to some one who has helped me so many times in the last 12 months!
Until then its all about getting better with InkScape for cutting and etching and some 3D apps for the Printer.

What I do know is based on what I have seen this past Xmas and been involved with my self.. their is ALOT of untapped market out there for makers who have good access to a laser and if done right then having the luxury of owning and operating your own laser cutter and hitting the craft faires, maker faires, Online Stores and even just good old twitter and facebook opens up ALOT of potential for making money (back at first tho to pay for the thing)!

This Xmas gone, I think with the snowflakes etc that Ben was turning out on his laser and other ideas like the reindeer etc, if it had been planned and implemented early then it could of smashed it with sales as they were so unique and EVERYONE I showed them too wanted them, I honestly think personally I could of sold easily 100-200 Starwars Snowflakes for anywhere between £5 and £10 EACH! I know Ben sold lots of reindeer and again every one I showed mine to loved it and I could of sold a handfull of those (I had 3 and the 2 I sold, I sold at a decent profit! There is a ton of other 3D laser cut work like that and that would of sold well to just friends, family, members of my gaming community! Then add the ton of people who saw them displayed and lit up nicely in my window and the ppl who came up to me asking about them.. I could of got a stand at the Wells Xmas craft market and all those things would sell them selves all day long and for a good price, there was nothing even slightly like them!!! This year with a set up stand and a decent display it could smash it and that's just one town!!!
The sky really is the limit!

I have given a couple of people I know (a couple of family members who have the spare money and some others I know through my family who were around at xmas and loved the idea) a rough and short version of a plan outlining the kinds of items that can be produced (using existing thingyverse things and Bens products as examples), including materiel costs,time and everything and then importantly profits based on X sales... they seem interested...

The last idea I am holding close to my chest for now until I can get a few protos made up (hopefully Ben will do the cutting for me), after what I have seen this Xmas I KNOW this Laser cut product would sell all day at the markets that run from Late October till January and there is always at least one or two every day across somerset to sell at!!! It could be a serious money maker and help pay off the bills im going to get running all this cutting and printing tech.

If it does turn out that this year a few of us have 3D Printers, CNC Mills and Cutters (Laser and CNC mill type) then we should pool resources, get ideas out EARLY, keep them in a private forum till we have a batch made and then hit the usual social networking sites, maker faires and markets as well as selling on Etsy and similar.

With my job now only 8 Hour night shifts (11pm-7am) and 3 nights on 1 night off!!! And getting paid £1500 a year more then I was getting before working 70-80 hour weeks it all means I have a TON of spare time this year (well for the next 2 years at least) and I fully intend to make use of the time when im not sleeping, to create some great things and ideas and get that cutter bought, my 3D printer here and MAKE SOME MONEY!

I think with, what, 4 or 5 of us regulars here, all with knowledge and experience and skill in different areas and with a growing range of equipment and tech that we could easily add a think tank type forum here that's limited access and get some serious designs going! I think we all have experience, big followings and large social networks and websites and community's (real life and online) some people have the contacts and potentially anyone could bring great things in too, we could easily create a new brand "in the style of" Adafruit, Spikenzielabs, Sparkfun etc... Obviously not on that scale but in line with their way of picking up fresh ideas and creating their own branded versions of Circuits, Kits, Cases, Models, Gadgets, Contraptions and things!!!

Just an example, and again one of Bens... The RasPi/Breadboard plate you/he designed, thats exactly the kind of thing that could of been produced, branded listed and sold! I had an Idea for bottom lit Acrylic hanging decorations made from transparent acrylic but with lines cut/etched into them in nice paterns to make them light up when an LED base was attached and powered on. A couple of weeks after posting the Idea on Twitter and a couple of other places, Spikenzilabs must also have been thinking along similar lines and came out with a similar (not quite the same idea, but same principle) set of products and they sold well for them with them even being mentioned on a couple of well known hack/mod/make sites and praised! If I had jumped on my own idea then it would of sold for sure but I didn't (at the time) have a place to have the pieces cut and engraved, if I had had the equipment needed then I could of easily cut and etched the pieces, had the small PCB's made, added the components and tested (or sold as kits) and put them out on a few sites and again at local events and markets. Looking back it would of been a sure profit maker!

The only thing we don't have is a high quality PCB printer/engraver but the price of having boards made in any amount over 10-20 now from a printer like Seeed is so stupidly low now it doesn't matter and is best to have them done nicely in color with smart silkscreening and its worth the 2-3 weeks it takes for an order to be ordered, printed and then shipped up from China.

I have seen it mentioned here before with regards to console mods, why not set up a co-op type e-store or even use an existing platform or store to showcase potential products. Etsy is a great example!

I have seen so many ideas come up here and elsewhere that could be real hot sellers but nothing has been implemented to get them out there on a decent scale to make money! I want to see some of these ideas produced and sold and if over the course of this year there are a bunch of like minded people who between us have the equipment to produce items, kits, projects and novelty's then why not? Lets give it a go!!

Its only a pipe dream idea, BUT I think if there are people who are willing to come in on this and we create a setup so that as much of the work as possible can be done in house on one of our own machines. Certain things are just begging for someone to take charge of and start producing and judging by what we saw this past xmas, if we got a range of products ready early this year and up on websites, social networks and at faires and markets then by the end of the year everyone could be making a nice bit of cash without interfering with our main jobs or businesses normal service.

Sorry for the long one but I have been thinking about this for a while now, especially as we don't have a maker/hakerspace down here to combine equipment, knowledge and skill, I thought why not try and put a group together on line that can all bring ideas and production tech to the table and where better to check for ideas and interest first.

Thoughts???
Last edited by 2 on vimes79, edited 0 times in total.
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dec0y7
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby dec0y7 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 9:18 am

I've said for a long time that a private sub forum would be a good idea as like you said it would make a place for ideas to come alive and blossom without fear of someone else having the “same idea“.

And as you pointed out we all have different skill sets that we could bring to the mix and hopeful start something to be reckoned with.
With all the different makerfaires etc around the uk we could hit them all, no problem with us all being from different parts of the uk which other businesses would struggle to do.

With the PCB's when I looked at making my own unless making loads and using them that it was cheaper to just order. I know with the mill/engraver I'm making it would be possible to proto them but for mass making, then would need a professional setup which if needed in future and if we can get something set up, I'm sure we could as a group invest in.

So to finish, yes I think its do able and yes I'm willing to help and be involved in anyway I can and as I've got nothing but time on my hands then I'm more then willing to spend all my free time doing anything that helps
tis Better to have tried and failed than never to have tried at all

I blame spelling errors and my writing skills or lack of...... On fred!!!!!! My blood clot (yes I really did name it lol)

xanthic
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby xanthic » Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:10 pm

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/formlabs/form-1-an-affordable-professional-3d-printer

Whilst a bit pricey, I do like the results from this printer. Would be interesting to see how it works out compared to a Makerbot 2 for instance.

vimes79
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby vimes79 » Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:18 am

Yeah I saw that one when it was up on Kickstarter but the Price point is too high IMO although obviously alot of people have the $2000 to throw down on a Kickstarter project as its the highest funded project to date on Kickstarter!!

The Makerbot and Makerbot2 are IMO the best choices on the market at the moment IF you want to spend $2000 on a printer and would be my printer of choice if I wasn't planning on also buying a Laser Cutter this year. They give great results, will run with ABS and PLA, are well supported and can be modded and improved on and are ideal for someone who will be doing alot of printing (Prob the printer of choice for Ben I would guess as its ideal for what he does and wants to do).

Im going to go with the Robo 3D as its a great price, can be modified to work with ABS as well as PLA and gives pretty good results, its not quite as smooth on the edge finish as the 2 Makerbot machines or the Form 1 but good enough for what I want it for and thats just prototyping ideas and printing parts and odd one offs. Also the team building the Robo are making some awesome progress with making the finish better by changing a few of the parts now they have smashed their target goal so its quite likely that by the time mine ships, it could well be knocking out prints of a similar quality to the MakerBot or the Form 1.. Finally, since I now know that an old buddy of mine is an engineer at a plastics company that do fast prototyping and small and large production runs (1offs and repeat stock orders), it means its going to be cheaper and def much faster to prototype any designs I want myself on the Printer and if its what I want then I can let him have the files to have a run made through a couple of different production types for a heavily discounted price on what is already not a great deal of money as long as you want 50+ units made and stupidly cheap for 200 upwards!
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby vimes79 » Thu Jan 10, 2013 3:36 pm

Guys.. I am seeing some amazing progress with the Robo3D printer that's currently running on Kickstarter.
Since they have hit over 300% above their goal its making some better tech available for them to use in all their printers which is making the quality of their printing better and better. Also remember this is going to be Open Source so upgrades and mods are going to be available in abundance once it launches!

Here are the latest results from their newly modified control unit and different hot end they have chosen to use instead of the original, they printed the 1st half at 100 micron (0.1mm layers) and the top half at 200 micron (0.2mm layers), both show good results...

Image

I would seriously consider this printer as a valid option as its starting to show results of equal quality and speed to the MakerBot Replicator Printer and not far off what MakerBot Replicator 2 is doing and for 1/3 of the price!
Or a good move would be to pledge the minimum of $3 to keep up to date on progress and improvements.
Link is here : http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1682938109/robo-3d-printer

They are now also offering 2 options for adding ABS as well as the standard PLA plastic, you can either pay $99 extra for the parts so you can swap bits out and install the heat bed etc when you want to use ABS or you can now select a pre-configured Hybrid ABS/PLA setup which is more money obviously then the standard PLA version but cheaper then buying the ABS add on kit (I would most likely still go for the $99 option and just swap the parts around if I wanted to use ABS but that's just me, alot of people have changed their pledges to go for the dual type setup.

I am sticking with just the standard PLA version ROBO3D for now as the less I spend on my printer means the more money available for my laser which is going to be used a lot more and for alot more items then the printer which will just be for prototyping where as the laser will be cutting and engraving the actual items that will be going out. Also all the testing and demos they have shown so far have been from the standard kit as the ABS kit is a way off yet and it could be a few months longer to wait to get the ABS setup. With the standard machine I will be getting it quite early as I was one of the first people to pledge and am in the first group of printers to be built and dispatched, that way I can always add the ABS add on kit at a later date but TBH for what I need it for I think that PLA will be fine and will be sufficient for everything I want to do, it seems that ABS makes the whole process more complicated.

Incidentally I have found a UK firm selling a (just over) A4 cut size laser cutter that is put together in the UK by a UK company and uses common parts that are easy to replace and also available in the UK and its less then £2000! It is designed so that it can be easily upgraded over time and ideal for people like myself who want something to get started with but then as money starts coming in and your usage goes up, you can start adding extras and improved parts. It comes with basic air assist (that can be upgraded later to a better system) and basic but sufficient cooling and exhaust systems (the cooling system requires a few extra parts but nothing major or expensive). Most of the main parts are up-gradable through addons or replacements and are readily available for fair prices when a replacement is needed urgently.
They also stock a couple of other higher spec or/and larger cut area cutters in my price range and have a showroom/demo workshop where you are welcome to make an appointment to go and check out their cutters and see them working 1st hand. I may go and take a look at some point a little further down the line when i'm ready to really start looking at options. So far this is the best value machine I have seen on specs alone. However I am a complete newb at this and will need some advice and guidance on what to look for nearer the time and hopefully then I will know alot more about the systems and what kind of setup I want for what I intend to do.
Supporter of Official Arduinos - BeagleBone - RasPi + EVE
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dec0y7
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby dec0y7 » Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:26 pm

Someone will make a killing doing a laser\printer Hybrid without losing quality.
tis Better to have tried and failed than never to have tried at all

I blame spelling errors and my writing skills or lack of...... On fred!!!!!! My blood clot (yes I really did name it lol)

phenoptix
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Re: Ford Publishes Engine block files for 3D printing

Postby phenoptix » Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:19 pm

The Robo3D looks interesting, I'm a little undecided on the Makerbot. I like the company and it can't really be argued that they've pushed 3D printing further than anyone else, they're putting a lot of R&D into the 3D printer market and still giving away everything but the design files for the case and the latest Makerbot GUI. Which means that people like Robo3D can put together a printer at a lower cost with all the features of the Replicator whist it would appear so far, not publishing any of their design files.
Who've you found for the lasers? We purchased from HPC, UK based, but not UK manufactured.

Just had to laugh at myself there, it felt like a long post for me, then I published and saw one of Nial's!


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