Just about everyone has heard of E3D’s new ToolChanger. Although still in its Beta phase, it’s looking to take the 3D printing world by storm by offering a new solution for people wanting to print with multiple materials in the same print. Despite only being available to our Beta testers at the moment, we've been overwhelmed by the support and enthusiasm we've received from the community on the whole.
Although the ToolChanger demo kit isn't something we recommended for every maker, we still want to hear your great ideas as applications for the ToolChanger.
Awkwardly, as MRRF and TCT quickly approached in 2018 we realised that we don’t have very many prints that are able to demonstrate the fantastic technology of the ToolChanger. Head of special projects and creator of the ToolChanger, Greg (@Greg_the_maker) hastily created a part to act as a technology demonstrator, which he dubbed the FPPN42, or in it’s full title...
Now don’t get us wrong, the trusted FPPN42 has served us well, but does it really show off the true power of the ToolChanger? Considering the print is neither functional nor beautiful, the answer sadly is no and this is where you guys come in. There's a huge amount of enthusiasm and ideas for applications for the ToolChanger among the community and we'd really like to find out what those ideas are. We're reaching out to the community and offering the opportunity for makers to design models which could can be used as technology demonstrators for the ToolChanger.
To incentivise makers, not only will we at E3D be continuously printing the winning models at all upcoming trade shows of 2019, (this includes MRRF, Rapid & TCT) we will also be offering a selection of prizes (or equivalent store credit) for the winner and runners up!
Nozzle Fun Packs will also be rewarded to those in places 4-13
Winners will be officially announced on Saturday 30th March at MRRF19 by a rocking team of judges made up of:
- Loubie (@Loubie_3D)
- Joel Telling @joeltelling
- Gregory Holloway (@greg_the_maker, Creator of the ToolChanger & BigBox)
- Sanjay Mortimer (Commercial Director of E3D)
(please note: attending MRRF is not required to enter the competition or win prizes, we just thought it'd be fun to announce there :) )
So if your brain is bursting with ideas and you think you’d be interested in taking part in our design competition then read on! Please send us your entries by midnight on Wednesday 27th March.
There's no real rules for the theme of entries- aesthetic, functional, something else? It's completely up to you. What we're really interested in the use of multiple materials, it's for this reason we must insist that...
All submitted models must include the use of 3 or 4 materials (the same material in different colours is fine). However, just like FPPN42, one of these materials may be some form of scaffold support. All models will be marked on their creative use of materials and colours to add both texture and character to the final prints. However, models will also be judged based on their rigidness and printability, so bear that in mind whilst designing.
Creative use of different material types here is also encouraged, flexible materials could be employed to act as grips or shock absorbing parts of tools, Woodfil could be employed to create a wooden base, small nozzle sizes could be used to add minute details.
Points will also be awarded for models which are particularly aesthetic, have an innovative functionality or are designed for manufacturing (are easy to print).
Entries must be broken down into multi-material stls. This may sound daunting, but is actually surprisingly easy to do on models designed from scratch, see the guides below for details. Please also include a screenshot of the assembled cad part, so we can actually see what it is. And lastly, all entries should be released under a permissive open source license.
Entries should be uploaded to the platform of your choice (although we really like thingiverse, Youmagine and github) under a permissive open source license and submitted to Samtumilty@e3d-online.com with the subject ‘ToolChanger Model Competition’ and attached printing instructions. Instructions may include any tips, nozzle sizes, slicer settings, but must include which materials and or colours are used where.
Tips for the modelling process
Intelligent use of support material is acceptable and encouraged but excessive use is discouraged as the print is likely to be seen by most with the scaffold filament still attached.
Great Examples of Multi-Material Prints
Good luck and feel free to drop any questions or concerns you may have in the comments below!