Thursday, October 11, 2018

New content and old is now on 3DPPROFESSOR.COM

Joe's 3D Workbench has been a wonderful home for me for a long time. But like Joe's Makerbot before it, I've outgrown it. Fortunatly the new site, contains an archive of all my blog posts going back to the beginning, and will host all my new content going forward, including some big changes that I'm very excited about reveling, just as soon as they're ready. So point your RSS feeds and email updates to for all future content from me, and let's make something cool!

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Making 3D Printed LIthophanes the easy way Video

Lithophanes remain one of my favorite 3D printed projects. But discovering recently that Cura can made depth maps, and with only the slightest bit of cleverness they can be turned into lithophanes, I was thrilled. Not that there's anything wrong with doing them the hard way. In fact doing them the hard way has a lot of benefits, not the least of which being that you can make them different shaped, like the key chain lithophane I carry around with me. Not to say this method couldn't be used to make a lithphane like that. You've just got to be a little clever.

If you want to make a lithophane the easy way, all you do is:

  1. Edit your image file to Adjust->Auto Level the image (in Paint.NET, GIMP, or Photoshop)
  2. Set your background color to black
  3. Edit->Canvas size to 110% and set the anchor to the middle
  4. Save your edited image
  5. In cura, open your edited image
  6. In the menu that comes up adjust the settings like so:
  7. That "Darker is Higher" setting is key.
  8. Then, 3D print with 1 shell (wall thickness = nozzle diameter) and 100% infill.
And that's all it takes to make a lithophane. But about that cleverness, if you wanted to edit the file and change the shape, I'll give you a hint: You can, in Cura, save to an STL.
Printed laying down vs printed standing up
If you're participating in the Children's Hospital Christmas Tree project, that width of 70 is key for getting it to fit in the Christmas Light Lithophane Holder Clip.

This video, together with the last one, forms 2/3 of the first triad of videos. I consider this kind of a dry run for the future, a chance to work out the kinks. I can already tell that this isn't the way I want it, on the output side, but recording a batch of videos at once is definitely an improvement in the workflow. Better and better, going forward.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Help me build a Christmas Tree for Children's Hospital

This Christmas Tree project,spearheaded by Glenn Ready, to raise money for the Children's Hospital in Salt Lake City, is going to be a huge undertaking. I hope this goes awesome.

My next video will detail the process of making the lithophanes for the clips that I'll talk more about in the next video. Then put them in an envelope and send them to:
3D Printing Professor
Joe Larson
P.O. Box 689
Hurricane, UT 84737
Everyone has been very kind not to say anything about my extended absence. Maybe everyone was just so busy getting ready for World Maker Faire (which I am mourning not being at), or everyone just doesn't care whether I upload videos or not. But, yes, there has been a lapse in my video schedule for a couple of weeks, and there's a couple of good reasons for that. The main one being, I had some thing I wanted to do to to improve my video quality, and I didn't want to release a video until they were done.

Things like a teleprompter and a script. I will have a video about this in the future, but just to run down the specs:

  • Lasercut foamcore enclosure
  • 3D printed hardware
  • 7" HDMI screen
  • Raspberry Pi accessing a shared directory on my windows machine
  • Keyboard clicker in my hand.
It's not a project for the tech afraid, as it uses the linux console a lot. But that never scared me.

And this is the first video I've used it on.

In addition, this was the first video where I shot 3 videos at the same time, intending them to be all themed similarly. In the future, this is kinda how I want me videos to go. So I could, possibly, string them together to one TV length episode, or break them up for easy consumption on YouTube. So look forward to the next two videos and tell me how I did making them all string together.

The next major upgrade will be using my newly purchased Zoom for sound. But we've got 2 more videos before you'll hear the change.

EDIT: 2 things I forgot to mention when I typed this up last night. First of all, that address animation that shows up at the 4:49 mark took an hour to do. Can't say I'm totally happy with it, but we're gonna use it... a lot.

Secondly, Those old C64 demos were playing from YouTube videos on my Raspberry pi in the background. It was kind of a Christmas tradition in my family to watch those every year, back when we had a C64 set up in the house, and one which I'm happy to use YouTube to continue. You can watch the demos from the video here:

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Buy officially licensed Waterdeep tokens

I am interested in printing these and putting them in my online store. I think that is against the creative commons license you currently have. What kind of arrangement can we make?
Honestly, all it takes is to ask.

I was contacted by an etsy reseller asking if they could print my models and sell them. The immediate conversation was about the difficulty of producing these models in quantity, but if they could sort that out, we could work something out. They sorted it out, we worked out a deal, and now you can buy 3D prints of something I modeled but someone else printed on etsy.

This is the way it's supposed to work, people.
It's kinda weird seeing 3D prints of my designs by other people in the exact same colors. It's hard to tell where my design ends and their prints begin.

We'll see if they move enough sets to make our deal worth it, but for now, I'm happy that this exists. I put a design out there, no expecting this, and I'm happy with how it's going. I hope it continues to go well.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

The Professor Still Love the Monoprice Select Mini Video

Yup. I got me the Monoprice V3 aka the "Pro". I think they call it "Pro" because, as I understand it, they discovered that the auto leveling on the delta printers was just complicated enough to make new users balk. Of course I think this could be fixed by a script that recognizes the first time it's turned on out of the box (or a menu option that says "first time?") and goes through the leveling process with you. Honestly, a lot of scripting is all this printer needs to be perfect. Well, that and a bigger build area, but for the price I'm not complaining.

"For the price" is a huge trump card. A lot of the time it means that "yeah, it sucks, but I didn't pay much for it", and sometimes that's true. But with the Monoprice printers, it's less that and more an excuse for the imperfections. "For the price" means you're getting way more than you paid for with these printers.

Part of me wishes I could do all the changes I want to all at once. To have a clear break between old videos and new videos. But it's not going to be like that. I'm going to incrementally start making better and better videos. There will be, hopefully, a format change in the future that will be noticeable. But it won't be accompanied by the new set, new equipment, better lighting, better editing, new brand and new thumbnails. For instance, the new thumbnails are happening right now. Thumbnails that pop, that draw people in, and are less cluttered. For instance, I cleaned a lot of clutter from the image on the right to make this thumbnail, even if it meant losing a lot of dinos.

One more thing, though. This will probably be the last video that I work without a script. This going off the cuff thing... what a mess! The original recording for this video is a stream of consciousness that I had to edit a ton to make a cohesive narrative from. But I'll share more of this with my Patreons.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Welcome to the World of #lowpolydinos

The Low Poly Dinos kickstarter is finally delivery complete. Every model is modeled and tested. Ever backer has received delivery. Every pre-post backer has received
their models as well. Everything on my to-do list is to done.
Does this mean that we are done with Low Poly Dinos forever? Oh, heck no. First of all, they're still for sale on my Etsy store, so no ones missing out. Plus, I'm going to be showing the whole thing off when I'm finished with the volcano at local fairs and, who knows, maybe future maker fairs. This project isn't just going into a box, I'm going to be showing it off for a while. I may even try to make a deluxe volcano with nebulizer inside to make it look like it's erupting.

But, I do have a lot to do right now. There's building plans to be drawn up, materials to purchase, building to do, equipment to upgrade, and video quality to kick up an order of magnitude. I can't say for sure that I know what's going to happen from here on out.

But I do know this. Whatever follows, whatever wonder things happen, this is where it started. It started with a silly little pack of 3D printable files and 300+ wonderful people who believed in me.

I'm going to stop here and continue this thought an email to the mailing list later on today.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Best tiny 3D prints for the end of your spool Video

Rapidly shot in one take, zero editing.I am honestly ashamed to present this to you. But if people are going to keep complaining about every video being about low poly dinos, this is what you're gonna get. Because I am still up to my butt in #lowpolydinos, and will be for a little while still. But I take no pride in this, so if you want not low poly dinos, this is all I've got for you.

Chances are it'll be one of my most popular videos, the way things go.

However, on the #lowpolydino side of things, I am rapidly coming to the end of the models I need to create, and I am very proud of the work I'm doing there. I'm been plaing with cavemen that could also work as a barrel of monkeys toys. See, there's a subtle jab at evolution in there.

Join me tomorrow for a live stream where I'll be tackling the volcano and chatting about 3D printing topics and generally having a good time. I hope to see you there.