Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Serious Slicing and Dicing
The code is still buggy but I was able to do an abbreviated slicing exercise on the polymer pump this morning. I used a big z-dimension because my little digital camera can only record for 15 seconds. I really need to record this on my PC cam.
Anyway, here it is...
I especially like the last slice.
Now I'll go gather up the aluminium covered bits I have leftover from house construction...
I'm thinking about just using Slice and Dice to generate a file of tracking directions and then writing a small background program to read that file and feed it into a RAM stack in the Tommelise controller board. Every once in a while the background program will check the level of that stack of instructions and top it up as needed. That's what the plan is, anyway.
You can get flexible cutting boards that are essentially sheets of slightly-roughened plastic about the thickness of a credit card. They'd probably stand up to the heat and could be reused.
Another possibility is silicone bakeware. Pick up a cookie sheet and trim the edges. That stuff'll take the heat without any problems. Won't slip around much, either.
Well, my little experiments with the flat section of silicone I improvized shows the same problem, nothing sticks to it! :) Ideally, the substrate should be heat resistant, very flat, yet with just enough fuzzy wood/foam like texture to hold the cooling plastic.
I think silicone with a little keyed in grippy pattern molded into the surface would work, but how would you make it?
Other than that I would sand the top of a cookie sheet or maybe crosshatch it with a razorknife.
The problem is getting what you are extruding TO STICK to the substrate because if it doesn't it shrinks and curls up at the corners as it cools.
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