The butterfly effect

Bas

Recovering tool addict
Bas
Corporate Member
A few months ago I bought a 3D printer. Fully assembled, it's about 12x12x12. I think I have a belt sander bigger than that! But amazingly enough, this small addition has led me to completely reorganize/ clean up my shop, in two ways.

First, I needed a place to put it, as far from the dust/ large boards swinging around as possible. Not easy. Second, I printed new blast gates for my dust collection system. Which led me to moving the lumber rack that was too close to the dust collection pipe. Which meant moving my workbench. Which required moving a shelving unit to another part of the shop. Which led to me discovering a bunch of stuff I never used/ hadn't used in years and deciding to sell it. Which freed up a bunch of space so I could finally organize some stuff. Which....you get the idea.

Anyway, it's taken a few weeks, but everything is back together and everything has its place again. The last time I made such a mess was when I ran some piping for the air compressor. It's not the change itself, it's moving everything to and from the places you need them moved to and from from to get to the right spot. It never reached the "Steve Coles shop explosion" stage, but it was close....

Anyone else experience this, where one small change led to wholesale shop changes?

(BTW, I think I've discovered the secret to keeping the shop organized/ clean: Don't put anything on the floor other than cabinets or tools. Everything else needs to go on a shelf, in a cabinet, or be hung from the wall. The moment you put a plywood cut-off somewhere against the wall, or have a box with accessories next to the bench, or stack some clamps against the door, you've created a magnet for clutter and sawdust.)
 

cskipper

Cathy
Corporate Member
I don't think anyone will be able to reach the level of Steve Cole's shop explosion! Congrats on the progress you have had.
 

JSJ

Jeff
Corporate Member
I hear you on that clutter avoidance thing! In my case, not only does dust collect there, the spiders have a field day quickly! I have never seen so many spiders just stroll in like they own the place. They are not the biting kind, just those annoying long legged very thin kind that make webs everywhere. I have declared war against them, but am hesitant to use pesticides inside my shop.
 

Raymond

Raymond
Corporate Member
I hear you on that clutter avoidance thing! In my case, not only does dust collect there, the spiders have a field day quickly! I have never seen so many spiders just stroll in like they own the place. They are not the biting kind, just those annoying long legged very thin kind that make webs everywhere. I have declared war against them, but am hesitant to use pesticides inside my shop.
Then don't use pesticies - those spiders eat other insects and they especially like the biting kind of insects.
 

sawman101

Bruce Swanson
Corporate Member
I once read somewhere, that if you keep sweeping down the spider's webs, they will eventually become annoyed enough to move elsewhere.
With the colder weather coming, I need to do some cleaning and a little reorganizing so I can safely use the wood stove. Maybe someday I may be able to afford propane heat, but that's in the distant future, however the benefits of the warmth from the wood stove are several, and a cleaner, neater shop is one benefit, even if it's forced on me.
 

zapdafish

Steve
Senior User
I recently rearranged a bunch of stuff and am having more trouble finding stuff now because I moved it from an inconvenient place to somewhere else that seemed more convenient at the time but of course I can't remember why I thought that. :(
 

Roy G

Roy
Senior User
Bas, in regards to your printer, what do you use for the plastic powder? I know nothing about 3D printing except that you have a plastic powder that is put down in layers. So is the plastic some sort of special plastic, is it recycled milk bottles, does it come in different colors, is it waterproof? I saw Jay Leno on Youtube print a crescent wrench that actually adjusted. Anyway, just curious about a new procedure.

Roy G
 

Bas

Recovering tool addict
Bas
Corporate Member
Bas, in regards to your printer, what do you use for the plastic powder? I know nothing about 3D printing except that you have a plastic powder that is put down in layers. So is the plastic some sort of special plastic, is it recycled milk bottles, does it come in different colors, is it waterproof? I saw Jay Leno on Youtube print a crescent wrench that actually adjusted. Anyway, just curious about a new procedure.

Roy G
There are different types of printers. For hobbyists, the most popular one uses fused deposition modeling (FDM). Basically, it melts the plastic, squeezes it out through a small nozzle, after which it hardens.

The plastic (filament) comes on a spool, it looks a lot like the nylon stuff they use for lawn trimmers. The most common plastic used in 3D printing is PLA (Polylactic acid). It's made from starch like corn or sugar beets. Other commonly used plastics are PETG (used for soda bottles), ABS (think black plumbing fittings) and TPU (flexible plastic). They all have different uses and require different printing temperatures. ABS for example is very strong, but produces toxic fumes when printed, and requires a high temperature. TPU on the other hand is great for making phone cases since it's soft/ squishy. That does mean it can get very "stringy" when printing (think spider web strands).

There are even some filaments that have wood fiber or metal. Imagine printing wood/ plastic keyhole hangers, or a wood/ metal clasp for a jewelry box.

The filaments come in a variety of colors, and are typically waterproof. UV light will typically degrade the plastic and/ or fade the colors. If you have a good printer, you can create mechanical structures, such as ball bearings, chain mail, and yes, an adjustable wrench.

There are other types of printers that use resin, powder, etc. and will use lasers, UV-light etc. to "harden" the material. These machines tend to be more expensive, and require more ventilation. However, they do tend to produce much finer detailed prints.
 

Phil S

Board of Directors, President
Phil Soper
Staff member
Corporate Member
And to add, now they have a carbon fiber/nylon mix. Printing time and temp have to go up but the parts are incredibly strong and light
 

Dee2

Gene
Corporate Member
Bas, please, what is a keyhole hanger and why would anybody want one?
 
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Bas

Recovering tool addict
Bas
Corporate Member
Bas, please, what is a keyhole hanger and why would anybody want one?
Let's say you want to hang something on to the wall, but make it removable. You can print something like this:


then just drill a hole using a forstner bit in your workpiece, and glue it in. Much simpler than trying to route this directly into your project. I would not want to use plastic on most of my builds, but if you can print it with wood filament, that's pretty close.
 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Corporate Member
Let's say you want to hang something on to the wall, but make it removable. You can print something like this:


then just drill a hole using a forstner bit in your workpiece, and glue it in. Much simpler than trying to route this directly into your project. I would not want to use plastic on most of my builds, but if you can print it with wood filament, that's pretty close.
You printed it upside down! Now the key will fall outa the hole!

All kidding aside, excellent idea.
 
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