Introduction to 3D Printing consists of 4 sessions.
Session 1: See a 3D printer in action with explanation of 3D. Overview of the process of design, slicing, and printing. Hold and think about various 3D Prints. Start to design your idea in Tinkercad.
Session 2: Continue designing 3D object in Tinkercad.
Session 3: Finish up design.
Session 4: Printed designs are delivered and painting of 3d object is finished. Take design home and build more!
Ask the students what they think 3D means. Explain how 2 dimensional examples are drawings. A drawing has two directions that you can move left/right and in/out. A 3 dimensional object add the height or up down. You can explain that people call 2 dimensions X and Y and show those direction on the 3D Printer. The third dimension is called Z and is up and down.
Start pointing out the various motors that control the 3 direction. Explain that the printing prints in 2D dimension and then moves up and starts the next layer.
There are various types of printers and the one we are using is called an FDM printer. FDM stands for Fused Deposition Modeling which basically means it uses plastic filament that gets melted by the hot end and laid down in layers. Pass around the hot end. Show the circuit board and explain the various components.
Explain the general process:
Design, Build, Slice, Print, Test, Paint —
1. Determine a problem that needs to be solved like how do I keep my keys together.
2. Start to build your design in TinkerCAD. TinkerCAD is a type of software that helps with Computer Aided Design (CAD).
3. Once you are done with your design, a STL file is exported and it is processed through a slicer tool which break the objects you designed in to 2 dimensional layers. There are many settings to determine how much to fill in the areas that can’t be seen. You don’t want to use 100% fill because it can be wasteful and not add additional strength, but you don’t want too little because that would make the design easy to break. Show the students the various models that have 0 infill and the other amounts of infill. Let the squeeze the models to see how they feel.
4. The printing process take a long time (some kids models have taken up to 11 hours to print) so we will print your models for you. You can start running a print so they can see how the printer works.
5. After you print is done you would usually test it, and then might need to re-design it, or change the slicer settings to achieve a better print.
6. The last step that you will do it to paint your designs. We will have paints, glow in the dark paints, glitter glue, and some stickers. You might want to wear clothes that day that you don’t mind getting paint on.
Next you can have the students that can read start the tutorial on TinkerCAD. For the other student you will want to use the projector to show the how to move object from the Shape area, the various ways to re-size and move the shape.
Students that are having trouble designing on TinkerCAD should be encouraged to draw their design with black marker on paper. Tell them in the next session they will import them in to TinkerCAD
Tell the students to start thinking about what they want to design and how to take different shapes to achieve what they want to build. You will want to show them how to move objects, slice objects, put holes through object and group objects.
Help the students with drawing to import them in to TinkerCAD.
Remind the students that this is the last session so they need to finish up their designs.
Show them how supports are needed on areas that have overhangs so the melted filament has a place to land as opposed to falling down. Paint the objects.