3D Printing: Designing for FDM with Inventor

Designing parts for 3D printing can be more involved than it appears at first glance. This course will help you design parts that can be easily printed using Autodesk Inventor.
Course info
Level
Beginner
Updated
Nov 8, 2017
Duration
1h 22m
Table of contents
Description
Course info
Level
Beginner
Updated
Nov 8, 2017
Duration
1h 22m
Description

While 3D printing is an amazing tool for turning ideas into physical objects, not all 3D models translate well from 3D modeling software to real life. In this course, 3D Printing: Designing for FDM with Inventor, you will learn how to create 3D models in Autodesk Inventor with the end goal of 3D printing the model in mind. You will first learn about the basics of 3D printing and Inventor. Next, you will get to see proper part orientation, how to avoid as well as how to deal with over hangs on your part. Finally, you will see different methods to process difficult parts so they can be easily printed. When you are finished with this course, you will have a solid understanding of how to design parts for manufacturing on a 3D printer. Software required: Autodesk Inventor 2017, Cura 2.6, Meshmixer 3.2.

About the author
About the author

Grayson is currently an undergraduate student at California Statue University Long Beach studying mechanical engineering. He has built four 3D printers and designed one from scratch. In addition, he is running a small 3D printing business. After college Grayson plans to start a company focusing on automation and robotics.

Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Course Overview
Hello, my name is Grayson Galisky. I'd like to introduce you to my course, Designing for FDM with Autodesk Inventor. In this course, we'll walk through the basic workflow of creating models and getting them ready for 3D printing. 3D printing is an incredible tool for developing an idea and bringing it in to the real world, but its usefulness is predicated by your ability to design parts compatible with FDM 3D printing. Initially, we will start to design parts in Autodesk Inventor with the purpose of printing the part, and we will be exporting those files in Autodesk Inventor in to a 3D-printable file type. Next, we will explore how changing the orientation of a part before printing affects the strength and surface quality of the part. Another aspect we will also consider is use of support material and dealing with post-processing. We will also take a look at how to break complex models down in to 3D-printable pieces and add intelligent support structures with Meshmixer. Finally, we will cover how to bond those parts back together after they are 3D printed with a couple of different methods. After completing this course, you will have a solid tool kit for working with and creating 3D models for 3D printing. This is a beginner-level course, so you do not need to have prior experience with FDM 3D printing. However, the course material will still be relevant even if you already have some basic 3D printing experience. I hope to see you join me for my course, Designing for FDM with Autodesk Inventor, here on Pluralsight.

Proper Part Orientation and Working with Overhangs
Welcome to module two, Proper Part Orientation and Working with Overhangs. In this module, we'll be orienting a few different 3D models in Cura for optimal quality, optimal strength, and then optimal part quality and strength. In addition, we'll be using Inventor to 3D model an LED flashlight casing to avoid overhangs. Before we dive into Cura, I want to give a little bit more information on what overhangs are and what would constitute an overhang. So for example, this part here has areas that are 45 degrees steep relative to the buildplate. These areas won't print well without support material or proper cooling, so if your 3D printer has large cooling fans, you may be able to pull off overhangs steeper than 45 degrees, but generally for most 3D printers and designs, you're going to want to stay away from any features that are over 45 degrees. And the overhang rule isn't universal. Sometimes you can pull off really steep overhangs, it really depends on your printer and the material that you're using. Different materials handle overhangs differently, so for example, you can pull off a steeper overhang with ABS than you could with PLA. And now just some final information about overhangs. Overhangs can be avoided by reorienting our part. In the next three clips, we're going to be going over quite a bit of this. And generally, you're going to be doing part reorientation in your slicing software. Another thing to keep in mind is that overhangs steeper than 45 degrees will generally need support material, and you're going to want to avoid support material because it causes the bottom of your parts to have a rough surface finish. Now some parts definitely need support material and support material is your friend in that case, but if you can avoid designing your part in a way where it does require support material and post-processing from removing that support material and using clippers to get rid of any excess material, then I definitely recommend that you choose that path where your model is optimally designed for 3D printing.

Printing Complex Models and Basic Post Processing Techniques
Printing Complex Models and Basic Post Processing Techniques. In this module we'll be using Meshmixer to take complex 3D models and process them into a more 3D printable form. So when we're working with complex 3D models, and this applies to large 3D models as well, we can cut our models into smaller pieces to 3D print, and if you have a model with a lot of curves, being able to cut it allows you to create a flat surface that you can align to the build plate, so cutting your part into multiple pieces can allow you to print these complex models. Now once you cut your part into multiple pieces and you print out those pieces, you have an issue and that is bonding the parts together. So I'll be going over a few different methods to bond your parts together, the main ones being chemically melting the parts together with acetone, using superglue, and then friction welding your parts together. Finally I will be introducing you guys to mesh mixer's intelligent support generation. So the support generation tool on Meshmixer is an awesome tool. If you bring your 3D model in and you define a few parameters, you can generate support material for your model that is better than the normal support material that you would get with Cura. And another great feature about Meshmixer's support is you can actually add support on if Meshmixer misses it, so if you see a particular area of your print that doesn't have enough support or an overhang that, you know, it just didn't see, you can add support onto the part, which is a really cool feature. So now I'll be introducing you guys to the user interface for Meshmixer, how to import parts, and then we'll be taking our first 3D model and cutting it into a few pieces to make it easy to 3D print.