It’s A Lock

I started out learning 3D printing because I know there are things that are easier to make with that process as well as things that are almost impossible to make by other means at least by me. I did not expect to encounter an example of the latter case quite so soon but there it is.

The orange widget is a means of locking my Myford ML7 spindle in position so that I can unscrew whatever is on the end of the spindle. Previous methods involved wedging a bit of hardwood in there and prying. And then cleaning splinters out of the works. Versions of this better alternative turned up on the Myford Facebook group and someone more adept at CAD than I shared a file. My contribution was to add the hole for hanging on a peg.

One of the disadvantages of using the Toronto Public Library’s 3D printing machines is that only PLA is allowed. One of the advantages is that they have all the colours so I chose a safety orange for this item in the hopes of never forgetting and starting up the lathe with the lock in place.

Learning the Rudiments of 3D Printing

I have been working on improving the organization and storage of my machine tooling and have decided to use that as pretext to learn a bit about 3D printing. Uncharacteristically avoiding leaping into yet another manufacturing technology, I took a class and am using the printing facilities at one of the Toronto Public Library system’s “Digital Innovation Hubs”. Only basic PLA fused deposition printing is available but that is more than good enough for learning.

Pictured is my design for a bracket that Ican hang one of my lathe’s quick change tool holders on. I have seven of those so far with a strong likelihood of more. They currently sit on a shelf and I keep picking them up one by one to find the one I want. With this bracket, I can hang them all in an orientation where I can see the tools they are holding.

I started out with a different design downloaded from Thingiverse but that proved unsatisfactory due to an overly tight fit and not being the orientation I wanted. This led me to bashing through the basic TinkerCAD tuturials and creating my own design. My design also minimizes print time since the TPL standard printing time slot is 2 hours. There is an all day option but that presents other challenges.

Perhaps I will one of the new resin printers eventually but the library option is working for storage widgets, at least.