All in One

One creative mindset I keep working to maintain with 3D printing is that objects I design do not have to be printed in one piece. It is fine when that happens to work. I keep reminding myself that it is not a requirement.

All my other crafts shout, “Some Assembly Required!” It’s no different with 3D printing. 

I am not obsessive with creating all-in-one designs. Like I say, just keep myself aware there are many good ways to create and design using assembly of components. 

3D printing has some limitations  of what can be created in layers. There are also material strength issues to consider with the direction the layers are applied. It’s like designing with natural wood where the grain is aligned for the best part strength. 

A tall display stand with long thin legs would best be designed as an assembly with the legs not printed as a horizontal stack of layers. Better strength for each leg to be printed the long way flat with long vertical layers when assembled.

I don’t create “hard rules” for myself on how to design parts. I do consider the options for what makes designs look and work best with the construction tools and materials with which I am using.

Then there is a guy who FDM printed a full-sized Lamborghini automobile with a desktop 3D printer. Certainly not in one piece! More glue than plastic for sure…


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