Season Finale – crafting a replacement part

IT Week hard at work
IT Week hard at work

It’s time to wrap up this year’s busy innovation & implementation projects. As you see from previous posts, my work has been more and more moving into 3D Printing instead of just modeling, and into Arduino-based robotics in the innovation area. Only last week we held the 12th International IT Week for Students, where two whole days were dedicated to crafting robots, and using 3D printing for the chassis and sundry parts for visual appeal. It was a really busy week, but a very nice one too, so thank you once more Copenhagen North, UEM Madrid, and HES-SO Valais-Wallis!

Somewhere during the last few weeks I’ve done the final tutorial for this Spring. It deals with creating a replacement part for something that is not available anymore – this time it was a colleague’s boat, in which a door slide was broken. As he brought it to me, I took some measurements and then a photo of it to get the form right. I produced a copy of it in PLA, he took it back to the boat for fitting, and as it was indeed a perfect fit, he asked for a nylon part.

I hadn’t used Nylon that much, only for a couple test parts, but now I decided to make use of the roll of nylon filament we have. Nylon is supposedly very hygroscopic, so having had the roll open in a box with desiccants, I wasn’t sure whether it was too moisture-laden to use, but it turned out fine. Another issue was the temperature. I used 245C for the extruder, and it worked fine, and on the table, I had a cold piece of plastic. The adhesion was excellent, actually it was hard work to get the table to relinquish the pieces.

As always, when you print something that is thin and tall, the printer needs another object for cooling. When the print head goes to work on one part, the other has a chance to cool down, so you don’t get the soft ice look on your print, when it stays too hot due to the small area being printed.

This time, I put all the instructions in the video, but you should be able to follow it quite easily, if you want to replicate the process for some other part you need to print.

And I wish you a nice Summer – I think I’ll be back in August with new ideas to print and build.


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