There has been an increasing interest in 3D designing for 3D printing lately, resulting in many available curriculum activities suited in that area. However, modelling out your design requires optimization before the 3D printing stage.
Below are 3 main reasons why you will need to consider doing up good design optimization for 3D printing.
Does your part look bulky and heavy? Optimizing your design could mean removing excess material without compromising strength and mechanical function of your part after it is printed. Some software use algorithm to calculate the amount of material density in certain areas of the design thus resulting in a beautiful lattice structure.
Is your 3D file water tight? This means that the 3D file should be a single, closed volume that would hold water if filled. There should not be no gaps in between construction points and all surfaces should be facing in the same way.
Different materials have different tolerances When modelling a part, we must keep in mind the material you will be printing it in. This will allow modelling features to be omitted or included to guarantee a good print out. For example, when printing in nylon, we allow a minimum unsupported wall thickness of 0.5mm whereas sandstone is a hard and brittle material and a minimum unsupported wall thickness of 1mm will result in better prints.
Now that you understand why design optimization is crucial before you start to print your project, give it some thought and work with your 3D designer to make your final print a failproof one!