Building A Wall

Next Test: Build A Wall 

 The File. About an inch long (25.4mm), the width of filament wide (approx .5mm) and 6mm tall.

The File. About an inch long (25.4mm), the width of filament wide (approx .5mm) and 6mm tall.

We wanted to look at the accuracy of the extrusion. What do the ends look like? What does the end look like where the extrusion starts versus where it ends? I was able to take fairly clear photos with my macro lens that allowed us to take a closer look. 

Lines With Friends

Last week I was able to work with my friends Christine and Jon with their 3D printer (the FlashForge, a printer very similar to the MakerBot) in order to do some more specific line testing!

The problem I ran into testing on the Cube was that I wasn't able to print a single strand of filament on the build pad. Christine and Jon graciously let me use their 3D printer for a night of experimenting. They have a studio in a new co-working space in the Central West End, TechArtista.

The point of doing these line prints is to test the accuracy of the nozzle on printers that use the extrusion method.



The FlashForge has its own set backs. As you can see, where the blue tape touches on the build pad there were some issues with adhesion. Even so, Their printer did what my Cube could not: print a single strand of filament.


Since this experiment I have been comparing the results from the FlashForge to the results of the Cube. The Cube prints four layers of filament because of something in the G-code which states that a build must have two "bottom" layers and two "top" layers to begin and finish the object. The FlashForge printed a nice thin layer of filament that was very close to the file size. Both lines have inconsistent ends. 

Sticks Astray

I included in this post an image of the sketch up file that I was trying to print, you will then see what actually happened. I think... too small/not enough glue on the build pad.

LightBox + Testing

I built an inexpensive light box using a cardboard box, bleached cotton and a piece of bristol board. I have been doing some tests on photographing the work I am doing in the box, it has been challenging to get the white balance right on my camera but once that was fixed it started coming together.  

I re-printed the 60 degree angle and it printed perfectly. The 45 degree angle had some issues printing the top surface -- I am not sure why.

The 15 degree angle (the steepest yet) seemed to have printed better than my previous 25 degree angle. I would say it is because I made the surface area of the base a little bigger. 


Today I am asking myself: what is the steepest angle I can print without needing supports. 

First I created a wall using sketch up that was too small and the resolution did not hold its form. I also was noticing some issues with the object staying fixed to the build platform while printing.

Then I tried 60 degrees. I created a larger surface area for the wall but was still having trouble with the object sticking to the build platform. You can see below in the images with the arrows that it begins to release at the corner from the platform.

Next, 45 degree angle. Still no supports are needed. I also am getting a better adhesion to the build platform. There are not any corners lifting from the platform. 

Now... 25 degrees! No supports! The underneath (the side closer to the build pad) looks very different from the previous ones. I think it was really struggling to print at such a steep angle. 

Update on 3D systems' Cube

I have been working with the 2nd generation Cube for two days now.

I have downloaded Google's Sketch Up as a way to design my own objects for the printer. You have to download a .STL exporter so that you can send your designs to the Cube software. 

I have printed three objects and I am on to my fourth. The first thing I printed was a design that came with the printer: a tea cup.

photo 2.jpeg

The second and third was a simple design I made in sketchup I have been having some issues getting the surface to be as pristine as I would like.


About a week ago I quit my job. I was a gallery attendant and spent most of my days sitting/standing + doing nothing + dreaming of what I could be doing. So I quit! Now I am currently working on some different projects 

I have started doing some work with my father, Charles Sperry. He is an inventor/innovator living in Massachusetts. I have started doing some consulting work, as in I research and think about different products, designs, inventions and we create a dialogue. It's the type of work that I would really enjoy making a full time deal. 

This website! What is it? We shall see.