Today has been a bit of a breakthrough day for some of my PhD research – while I’m keeping the details a bit hush hush for the moment, part of the process has included 3D printing a simple cover for the breadboard which I’m happy to share. To date this is the most complex circuit I’ve cobbled together with my Arduino (Freetronics Eleven) and in preparation for discussing my work with some colleagues, I realised I could tidy everything up and make it seem more like an actual product by 3D printing a cover.
As I’ve mentioned before, these quick little projects where you can go from idea, to CAD model, to 3D print, to testing within a matter of hours is one of my favourite benefits of owning a 3D printer. The design is essentially just a large snap detail which clicks around the breadboard and highlights the 3 buttons used by the operator. It also allows a secure mounting position for an Infra-red sensor on the right. The model took about 30 minutes to create in Solidworks with my trusty calipers, and 87 minutes to print on my Up! Plus 2 3D printer using the 0.2mm layer thickness.
Unfortunately 2 of the snaps broke while removing the support material, I guess I should’ve thickened them a little considering the layer orientation… but nothing a little superglue can’t fix. And just to jazz it up I added some paint onto the embossed text with a tiny little brush. I have to admit I’m really happy with the result! Just another application of 3D printing I hadn’t considered until today.
– Posted by James Novak
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