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  1. #1

    Using Plastic 3d printing for robot parts

    Plexiglass/Acrylic is my go-to robot chasis-building material, but it is near-impossible to make round objects with plexiglass. I'm thinking of purchasing a 3d printer, but from what I can see in pictures, 3d printed objects have a very particular texture and appearance that seems native to 3d printed objects. I'm not sure whether such is desirable for my projects. I would like to attain a very smooth, glossy, and professional appearance. I have never been able to touch a 3d printed object, so I'm trying to gather some impressions from people who have some printing experience.

    Has anyone here printed parts for robots?

    Can anyone comment as to how 3d printed parts would compare to plexiglass in terms of feasible texture and/or appearance?

    Particular filament recommendations?

    Thank you.
    Last edited by WilkinsMicawber; 06-19-2017 at 04:50 PM.

  2. #2
    I am playing with some plexi today. I have to say that I don't think you'll get anywhere close to it with 3d printing if you are looking for the same clarity, strength and flexibility all rolled into one.

    Look into a cheap CNC machine and use it to cut out your circles.

  3. #3
    Wot about after sanding and an acetone vapor bath?

  4. #4
    Where are you from? Maybe someone on here is close enough they could send you a sample circle and let you have a go at it to see what it would be like.

  5. #5
    I mean round as in a cylinder.

    Looking at some of the acetone treated plastic print-outs, it seems like the quality is close enough, considering the inexpensive nature of 3d-printing and the fact that I can design any shape encasement I need.

  6. #6
    Engineer Marm's Avatar
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    What do you mean it's near impossible to make round objects? They stock plexi/acrylic pipes at my local hardware store and I'm literally in the middle of nowhere.

    What type of parts are you looking for?

    Acetone only works as a solvent on certain materials. I'm 90% sure acrylic is not one of them. But there are many other options to smooth prints.

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