I have seen a few magic instances online where folks have 3D printed molds to put Sugru (silicon rubber putty) into and then bolt together (allowing to cure overnight) in order to cast custom silicon rubber parts.
I was wondering if any of you super geniuses out in TV Land might be able to write a script that given the input of an .stl (or .scad) generates a two new .stl files which are two halves of a mold that you can bolt together with Sugru in the middle to make said rubber parts.
This would be magic on Thingiverse :) A relatively simple script like this would open up all kind of casting opportunities, It would be helpful for materials other than Sugru as well. Sugru molds do not need a hole to pour in fluid; this makes them simpler. Just put Sugru in the middle and mash the halves together!
I don't think this would be TOO CRAZY to pull off, but it is beyond my skills right now... But I don't think this would be to difficult for the kinds of folks who subscribe to the OPENSCAD Mailer ;)
Considerations might include the ability to choose what axis to cut the "input STL" on; and ensuring that the end result pieces are laying smooth side down, so they can actually be printed on a reprap!
I would love to use M3 nuts and bolts to hold the mold together; maybe this could be a variable for the user to change
> I would love to use M3 nuts and bolts to hold the mold together; maybe this could be a variable for the user to change
If you are doing it as a pressure clamped mould then ball bearings work
well because they actually align the parts for you as you press down. Old
trick from white metal casting ...
However this is 3D printing so you can print any alignment you needed
including spheres/cuts or fancier arrangements (even sliding locks).
> Who can do it?
For Openscad the main part is pretty trivial.
difference the model twice with a cuboid the size of each mould segment.
If you need alignments then create amodel of a cuboid with the alignments
the size of one mould segment, difference that against a cube the size of
the entire mould to get the other, then intersect those with the design.
Once I've finished building my Mendel I plan to have a go at refining
this properly both for white metal casting (until someone does a
white metal print head ;)) and for plastercasting.
I'd still include holes for pouring in most cases. It's not getting the
casting materials in that is usually the problem, it's getting the air