3d printing for ant weights

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BobHill452
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Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2018 2:26 pm

3d printing for ant weights

Post by BobHill452 » Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:41 pm

Hello there,

I'm thinking about kicking into the next gear with robot chassis production by investing in a cheap 3d printer. My aim is to create quite a few robots so I can have big rumbles with my friends rather than necessarily to produce competition winning robots.

I have a couple of questions if people who use 3d printing for bots would be happy to answer

Currently I'm thinking about a Crealty Ender2 or a monoprice maker select mini.
Does anyone own either of these or have experience with them?

What would you say are the best and worst things about 3d printing when it comes to robot building?

I'm really trying to determine whether it is worth the time and money investment to get into what is effectively a whole new hobby for the benefits it would bring to my existing robot building en devours.

Thanks!

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Lincoln
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Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 12:00 am
Location: Olney, Milton keynes

Re: 3d printing for ant weights

Post by Lincoln » Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:47 pm

hi
i don't have any experience with those 3d printers but i do 3d print pretty much all my robots. using a very expensive 3d printer at my dad's work.

advantages of 3d printing
extremely creative, as in you can make a robot of any shape you can think of.
prototyping, print something, oh no it doesn't work very well like this, oh well i'll just modify the design and print it again.
design in every detail, you can make little holders for all your electronics avoiding the need for double sided tape.
survival, if you print at about 3 or 4mm thick, then 3d printing makes great amour, surviving hit after hit from spinners absorbing much of the hit, so less flying across the arena.
other advantages that i've forgotten because i haven't built a robot without 3d printing in years.

disadvantages
maintenance and fine tuning, many of the hobbyist 3d printers will require same fine tuning to get good quality prints.
being stupid, i have frequently designed something and then realized its not possible to actually get the components inplace.
too thin, anything too thin will probably break, im not saying you need 4mm everywhere but its hard to tell when designing what kind of thickness internal chassis parts need to be.
no screws, you cant really thread into 3d printed material, so you have to use nuts and bolts which means you need access from both sides
other things i've forgotten about probably

overall i love 3d printing so this list may be slightly biased.
Team RobotMad, home of the Smart robots, and very mean pots :)
Chris and Lincoln Barnes

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Shakey
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Location: Reading

Re: 3d printing for ant weights

Post by Shakey » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:25 pm

Honestly the maker select minis bed size is a hair too small for ants, it'll limit you (you don't want to be printing right to the edge). I just picked up a Wanhao i3 Duplicator v2.1 and it is a very good (and cheap) machine that'll do ABS (the preferred ant material out of the standard 2).

3D printing for me opened up a whole new area of building doing much more complex and interesting things with my robots. So many designs I wouldn't have been able to do without a 3d printer. Though the downside is typically pure 3d printing is weaker than other methods, but combine it with a good armour material like polycarbonate and you are set.
Lincoln wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:47 pm
no screws, you cant really thread into 3d printed material, so you have to use nuts and bolts which means you need access from both sides
other things i've forgotten about probably
However I could not disagree more with this point. Printed and built over 150 ants the vast majority held together mainly with M2 screws.
Nuts And Bots - For all your components and ready built antweights!

Alex Shakespeare - Team Shakey / Nuts And Bots / Team Nuts:
AWS 44, 45, 49, 51 & 55 Winner - Far too many robots!

BobHill452
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Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2018 2:26 pm

Re: 3d printing for ant weights

Post by BobHill452 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:11 pm

Thanks for your replies.

I've decided to go with the Ender 2 as it seems the better option in my budget and can apparently with some tinkering print ABS (we shall see).


I've found out about these melt in threaded inserts to take bolts which I might use: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nU06915NJ30
I've seen others use them in bots.

It's helpful to hear that 3d printing allows creativity with designs as that is what interests me. I want to have a fleet of bots that are all different and or experimental.

Are there any 3d design resources for robots you'd recommend?

Paulmchurd
Posts: 175
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2017 4:39 pm

Re: 3d printing for ant weights

Post by Paulmchurd » Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:37 pm

I used Onshape to design my robot. On it you can find N20 gear motors and mounts. Batteries... all premade that you can put into your design to help visualise it.

Also onshape it free, can be used on iPad and through web browser.

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