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How One Educator is Using 3D Printing in the Classroom
Rhonda Grandy | Published Dec 19, 2016

Theater masks, rockets, e-NABLE hands and more - see how Ashley Ricart, our January Hacker of the Month, is using 3D printing in the classroom.

Ashley Ricart, our January Hacker of the Month, was first captivated by 3D printing technology around 2012. She originally went to school for character modeling, which eventually led to her discovery of 3D printing. Ricart, who is now a teacher, has been on a mission to implement 3D printing throughout her school - not just in STEM focused classes, but multiple courses, including Theater, English, Latin, and Art. Her most recent endeavor was producing masks and props for the schools production of the play, The Lion King. In total, thirteen masks were printed using seven to eight spools of PLA filament(More)

How To Use Support Material: Part 1
Scott Cahoon | Published Dec 18, 2016

Part one of an in-depth look at how to use support material. First up: single extrusion. Learn successful design considerations and how to use support material to create complex prints.

When designing models for 3D printing, the prudent designer will ensure that negative space is minimized and that the positioning of the model on the printer assists in navigating or mitigating that space.  However, any designer who has been around the block once or twice knows that there will come a time when the use of supports cannot be avoided.  With that in mind, this article will explore some considerations during design to mitigate printing over negative space and to venture more in-depth on the use of supports while printing. (More)

How To Make ABS Juice, Glue, and Slurry
Alec Richter | Published Dec 11, 2016

This guide will show you how a few simple mixtures of ABS and acetone will be a helpful new staple in your 3D printing toolbox.

When someone is new to 3D printing, it is highly recommended to start with PLA filament, and having mastered that, to begin experimenting with different and more advanced materials. While PLA and ABS filament are the two most popular filaments, they have drastically different properties from each other.

PLA is such a great beginner material because it doesn't warp, doesn't need high temperatures, and it doesn't give off fumes as you print. ABS has the opposite properties on all accounts, however, what it holds over PLA is its temperature resistance; leave a PLA print and an ABS print in your car on a hot day and you will find the PLA has warped but the ABS hasn't. Additionally, ABS has more finishing techniques available from its chemical makeup: it sands easier than PLA and you can use acetone to melt away the layer lines. (More)

3D Printed Custom Car Parts
Rhonda Grandy | Published Nov 16, 2016

See the amazing 3D printed custom car parts from Michael O'Brien, MatterHackers' December Hacker of the Month. 

It would be an understatement to say that Michael O'Brien likes cars. Take one look at his Instagram, and you'll see what I mean. He's fully immersed in the automotive industry; being lead engineer at the Roadster Shop, I'd imagine that you'd have to be.

When we discovered that O'Brien (aka Magic Mike) was using 3D printing to help design and manufacture custom accessories for cars, we knew he had to be featured as our December Hacker of the Month.  (More)

Collapsible 3D Printed Surfboards
Guest Contributor Dylan George | Published Oct 31, 2016

Dylan George created a collapsible surfboard thanks to 3D printing. Learn about his process and how 3D printing can enhance your hobbies.

People who travel frequently know that airlines can gouge you for the cost of over-sized luggage. I know this all too well because I travel with my surfboard a lot. I needed to find a way to cut the cost of traveling with my board, as well as the inconvenience of hauling it through airports.

I decided to chop my board apart into three pieces (crazy) and use my Ultimaker 2 Extended to design fixtures to reattach it. It was a risky idea, but it definitely paid off thanks to 3D printing.  (More)

How to Stop Filament Warping in 3D Printed Parts
Scott Cahoon | Published Oct 23, 2016

With these tips and tricks, warped parts will be a thing of the past. Here is a guide to eliminate warped parts by using a few learned secrets and diving into brims and footprints.

Any 3D printing practitioner that has been printing for any extended amount of time (usually longer than one day) has had to deal with filament warping.  Warping is the one bad apple in the 3D printing bunch that can spoil an entire print.  Every other variable in a print may be perfect, but if material warping occurs, you'll probably need to scrap the part. (More)

How to Succeed when Printing with PETG Filament
MatterHackers | Published Oct 20, 2016

Durable and easy to print, PETG filament is likely to take over as the most commonly-used filament. This in-depth guide provides a few tips and tricks on how to get started and embrace the fantastic properties of this material.

PETG stands for Polyethylene Terephthalate, which is one of the most common polymers used today. It’s used to make water bottles, food packaging, and countless other common plastic items. As a 3D printing filament, PETG has proven its worth as a durable material that is easy to use. Figuratively speaking, it combines the most useful characteristics of ABS filament (the rigidity and mechanical properties) with the ease of printing that PLA filament affords. Kind of a “best of both worlds” scenario. - SHOP PETG(More)

You Won't Believe These Dolls are 3D Printed
Rhonda Grandy | Published Oct 20, 2016

MatterHackers' November Hacker of the Month, Aida Legrand, uses the BCN3D Sigma printer to create incredible 3D printed dolls.

Aida Legrand, MatterHackers' November Hacker of the Month, has only been 3D printing since January of 2016. Legrand's husband bought the self proclaimed "technical geek" and software engineer a Robo 3D R1 Plus to kick off her 3D printing obsession, which has now become her full blown hobby. She has since upgraded to the BCN3D Sigma, and her prints are stunning - Legrand creates 3D printed ball-jointed dolls. (More)