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THINGS IN COMMON — 3D Printing and Aquaponics January 28, 2013

Posted by rik94566 in aquaponics, DIY aquaponics, Rj45 connector, Uncategorized.
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Well as it turns out 3D printing and aquaponics do have something in common.

They both need to be water -tight!

rj-45 jack

Now that I have a Sketch-up model I wanted to get it printed.

I figured out that I have basically 3 options to get this done.

Option One –Buy a 3D printer. I did some research on this and know what I want am ready to go, until I ran the idea by my wife!  The unit I wanted costs in the $700.00 range.  As on all my projects and ventures my wife has final say so on all things financial.  This one did not get approved.  Not to say that it won’t happen in the future, but just not right now.

Option Two – Use one of the current leaders in the on-line printing services business.  The two leaders that I know of are Shapeways and Ponoko.  The other choice here is to go to a TechShop and have them print my model for me.

Option Three – Find someone with a 3d printer and have them make a print for me.  I would of course pay them for this service.

Well option one is a no go situation for the present time.  Option three will not work,  as I do not know anyone well enough to inquire about having them make a print for me.

So Option Two it is.

The TechShop choice is much harder for me as I would have to show up at one of their locations in the bay area with file in hand and then get all signed in to talk with someone about how the whole process works within  their structure.  Way to much work for a little part.

So I went with Shapways and Ponoko.  I signed up and was ready to go, almost…. Well as in all things technical there is a file incompatibility problem with using Sketch-Up and 3D printing together.  I now needed to convert my model to a .STL  format.  I did my research and got a free version of a product that claimed the conversion was easy to do.  I did the conversion and loaded my model up to be priced and approved.

Well again I hit an issue.  As it happens my model is not “Water-tight” and has to many holes and the model is to small to print on either of the services.  I could see no holes in my model and did not understand how to fix this problem.  As in all things internet I started on my quest to accomplish my goal of getting a model printed.  Now I found myself researching and learning how to make a model water-tight.  It is a fun adventure and learned a lot that will be very useful in future designs with Sketch-up

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