sansthelight

Balloon Ornament part 2

In 3D Printing, Crafts on November 26, 2013 at 7:49 pm

I promised you an update on the balloon ornament and some photo’s.  When the print finished, it looked great.  Once I got it off of the print platform though I realized that the yardarm/connector/supports from the sail to the hull were both cracked.  I attempted to repair them with some scrap abs and acetone (essentially the same way I would repair fiberglass with a patch and some resin).  By the time I was able to spend more time working on it I realized that it had started to develop some pretty big cracks in the balloon and the sail.  When I tried to assemble it I also discovered that the warping was much worse than I had thought it was and there was no way that the two pieces were going to go together as they were.  I sanded down the interior in an attempt to make the two halves flat.  I couldn’t get too aggressive because the corners of the hull and the sail kept catching and I was running the risk of breaking something.  So I got it as close as I could and super glued them together.  (The Loctite superglue I used really had problems with the abs btw.  I need to get to a home improvement store and buy some abs glue.).  The warping was even more obvious now and the cracks were getting pretty bad.  I decided to try using acetone vapor in an attempt to glue the cracks together.  Using the vapor is usually used to polish and finish off an model but I was hoping that the melting that occurs from the vapor would glue those cracks closed when it dried.  I ended up using a bit much acetone and left it in the vapor for a couple more minutes than I should.  The abs started bubbling badly.  I waited for it dry again and sanded most of the bubbles down.  It looks pretty rough in spots now though.  The broken supports between the sail and hull were not fixable at this point so I cut them out and replaced them with paper clips.  I’m going to have a try at painting this model regardless of the damage just to see how it turns out.  It was meant as a prototype anyway and sometimes prototypes have problems.  That is kind of the point of building one.  🙂   I do have some ideas to stop these problems with future attempts.  I am going to use more internal fill to help combat the cracking.  I will print the balloon as one single piece so that the warping won’t affect assembling it later.  I have not decided on how to fix the sail connectors yet.  I may stick with metal supports like I used on this one.  I will have to figure out how the sale will connect to the balloon as well because printing the balloon as it’s own piece invalidates the solution I have now.  More thought is required.  I’ll let you know how it goes when I try it again.  In the meantime, here are some photos.  You can really see the cracking in the model best after I hit it with some primer.

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