Today's guest post is by Nick Stone, Z Corporation Mechanical Engineer.
I came across this toy in a science museum gift shop when I was a teenager. It's a simple canoe shaped piece of plastic that performs miracles. It's called a rattleback and it has amazed people for thousands of years.
I've wanted to print one for quite awhile now and after a bit of trial and error I got a shape that works pretty well. The great thing about having a ZPrinter at my disposal is that I can run through revisions so quickly. I'd say I went through 20 different revisions before I was happy with it. Because the strength of zp150 parts is so high, for a lot of the early revisions I didn't bother to infiltrate. I just depowdered, gave it a spin, watched it not spin back, and then tossed it in the trash.
This model is about 4 inches long but I've scaled it up to 26 inches and all the way down to 1 inch. It seems to work better the larger it is. The surface finish is important so after a dip in ZBond 101 I smooth the bottom with fine grit sand paper. I get about a half turn back from the 4 inch version. Let me know if you can beat that.
Here's a video of a 26 inch model we printed on a Z810. It actually shakes the table when it starts rocking.
I am responsible for leading 3D Systems content creation and capture activities and, in partnership with business and functional leaders, developing new opportunities for the company. I have held a variety of leadership positions in marketing and business development and most recently ran a $150MM division of Church & Dwight, a leading consumer goods company. Prior to receiving my M.B.A from Harvard Business School, I was an Explosive Ordnance Disposal company commander for the U.S. Army. I graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering.
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