Wednesday, November 28, 2018

3D Printed iPad Stand: Exemplar

Above: the design shown from the front
Challenge: Student, while ten years old has proven to be extremely skilled at producing some exemplar quality prints.   The student wanted to ensure that a iPad stand was created that would be significant that was produced before the end of the year.
Background: Student has produced these before but wanted to push the limit of the 3D Printer with the scale of the project and the finishing.   The student wanted to mix combination of PLA produce an iPad stand and also have storage made available (as shown).   One challenge that the student hadn't anticipated was the storage on the right hand side of the print limited the space available for the iPad stand part of the print.  The student came up with a clever solution to this problem.   The student experimented with producing a separate block that was able to be used to balance the other side of the iPad (see photo).  This solved
Above: Balance block in place
the problem and allowed the balance that the student was looking for.    The student also wanted to personalize the iPad stand with combination colours.   The name block at the front was a straight forward addition, with a butterfly on the reverse.   The 'butterfly' has  been used in prints before - the rafting that was created with it was deliberately left in place to maximize the stability of the print.   The mainstay of the designs were from the Tinkercad interface.   The student concerned with this project is ten years old - however they have been responsible for a series of highly innovative and creative prints.
Above: Butterfly design on rear.
Level of Difficulty: High - as far as iPad stand designs go, this really is the most impressive one creative by a student and as such this would not be for the faint hearted.   The student has literally produced an exemplar that we will be using to show others as a top of the line design.   Everything works in relation to each other - and the one challenge that needed to be overcome the student was able to identify and solve effectively.
Above: Design shown from above
Time frame: Like the level of difficulty, this was not for everyone, the stand took twenty five hours, and in addition to this the lettering and the block took a further three hours, for a total of twenty eight hours for this project.  The thickness of the heart part of the storage could have been reduced slightly which would have affected the time slightly, but given the dimensions (see below) this is a significant project that would require a significant investment of time.
Size: The design measures 200mm across, with the stand measuring 130mm and the storage at the end a further 70mm.  The design including both the lettering and the butterfly measured 160mm.   The block at the back of the design measures 100mm high, the storage is 70mm and 90mm respectively.   The balance block was 20mm by 30mm by 20mm. 
What would we do differently/next steps for students: Initially the lack of balance due to the overhang from the iPad stand proved to be problematic, however the student herself identified the solution easily.   There isn't much more to add to what has already been written, this is a print of the highest order that really is an exemplar.

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