It looks like 3D printing could ensure a vibrant film camera market in the future..

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by Sean, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    I was thinking about this the other day. 3D printing continues to become more advanced every few months, even the printing of metal objects. In theory 10-20yrs from now maybe we will be able to print competent camera bodies to house various films? Here is a 3D printed pinhole camera:

    http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:9044

    [​IMG]

    Here is another:

    [​IMG]

    There is also the talk of 3D printed circuitry becoming a reality using graphene..
     
  2. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    I've always wanted a simple CNC machine.. there's a lot you can do from sticking together things, or making replacement parts :smile:

    With 3D printing, you could print out components to bolt together, I'm sure you could make a competent camera from printing components.
     
  3. Stephanie Brim

    Stephanie Brim Member

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    And they're getting cheaper and cheaper.

    I'm so fascinated by this...mainly because it could solve my cheap 5x7 inversion processing problem. :tongue:
     
  4. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    Absolutely. I fully intend to use the 3D printer at our library (yes, the library has several 3D printers) to keep my Jobo working when the shitty plastic it's made of breaks.

    Given that we have people successfully printing rocket motors, cameras are really not going to be a problem. My suspicion is that we will see printable designs soon for coating machines and small-scale automated film processors.
     
  5. willrea

    willrea Member

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    I'm building my 3D printer right now, been buying thinking of stuff to model so I can start cranking stuff out when it's finished.
     
  6. Kevin Caulfield

    Kevin Caulfield Subscriber

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    It's amazing and exciting that this 3D printing technology is already available. My guess is that within a year or two there will probably be many new 3D-printed cameras on the market.
     
  7. batwister

    batwister Member

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    You should try a particle accelerator next.

    The sooner we can churn out Hasselblad and Pentax spares with one of these, the better. This could potentially be the camera collector's speedball. But no worries, you can always make a new wife/girlfriend...
     
  8. willrea

    willrea Member

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    ABS and PLA are the two most common materials used. I haven't read anything in terms of ABS, but PLA isn't light tight, so if one were to design a camera to be printed in it you'd have to take additional measures to make the camera light tight.

    If anyone happens to know if ABS would be better, I'd like to know for my own designs.
     
  9. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    I'm making one at the moment. I have the use of an Excellon CNC router at work (intended for PCB drilling and routing) and I am using it to make myself a small machine for personal use. It is actually quite a simple thing to make. Do a Google search for 'diy cnc' and you will see a vast range of styles and construction techniques.

    Any pictures you can share?


    Steve.
     
  10. willrea

    willrea Member

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    This a old pic of just the frame: http://www.flickr.com/photos/willrea/7926926630/in/photostream
    I got the y axis linear rail and bed assembly this week and I'll upload a pic of all that soon. Also decided on upgrading the x axis to a linear rail and will need to use a aluminum angle to mount the extruder on. I'm waiting on word about the extruder body and the controller board should be shipping next week or so.
     
  11. Stephanie Brim

    Stephanie Brim Member

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    I prefer the one with basement cat.
     
  12. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I saw a 3D printer at my son's elementary school computer lab just now--a $2000 machine, but what it turns out seems fairly rough. The shapes can be complex, but the surface isn't exactly fine enough for camera parts without some additional machining or hand finishing. I could see myself cranking out the slip-on lenscaps, though.

    It has kind of a Heathkit or maybe COSMAC ELF look about it. I'm sure there will be something in 10 years that will make this thing look like a TRS-80 looks to us today-- http://store.makerbot.com/replicator.html
     
  13. willrea

    willrea Member

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    The Makerbots aren't worth the money. Soon you can spend the same or a little less money and get a magnitude better precision which should greatly improve the quality.

    One can use acetone fumes or similar techniques to smooth out the surfaces. I've also thought about lens caps using either IMPLA or HIPLA since they have a little flex in t hem so you can get a snug fit.
     
  14. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    3D printing with the "hot melt glue gun" approach currently has some limitations. It is not always light tight or water tight for one. Easily fixed with a little silicone or body putty. The other more serious one for me is that it tends to be somewhat weak across the "grain"....at least with ABS. Also, expect a little sanding when there are tight fits. There are other 3D technologies out there that are better (and I use almost daily!), but not quite ready for home use but will be in the next few years. That said, if you are careful with build direction and are willing to fill it a bit if needed, you can make a lot of stuff with it including cameras. I personally have a hankerin' to build a CNC router and start making large format cameras among other things! Maybe when I retire.
     
  15. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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  16. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    3D printing is still very expensive. I asked a lute body to be printed with ABS and cost was more than 3000 dollars , an EOS body costs 500 dollars without any part , an rubik puzzle costs 140 or more dollars.

    I am GM Fanuc operator and cost at cnc machines depends on time wasted on cutting the part. If you design your part with solidworks , generate the cutting code and buy a big chunck of cnc machines plastic block , cutting is still cheaper than printing , especially parts are mid or bigger size.

    Umut
     
  17. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    I agree that CNC cutting of plastic (and wood) is better than 3D printing.

    For an example of a camera made with a CNC machine, see my link below for my 6x12 camera. This was made with an Excellon CNC router. This is a bit limited compared with a full function 3 axis router or mill as the Z axis height is not as easy to control in G code as the X and Y (it is possible but it's usually easier to run separate programmes at various depths).

    I do not use a 3D CAD package like Solidworks. I draw the part in Autocad, offset the profile by the radius of the cutter and write the G code by hand based on the coordinates of the offset path. This sounds more of a hassle than it really is. For more complex parts, I ask our CAD expert to convert my file for me although I do now have a good DXF to G code convertor.


    Steve.
     
  18. Prof_Pixel

    Prof_Pixel Member

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    Still have one in my basement with several extension boards.