RepackboxRotoMetals2Graf & SonsWideners
Inline FabricationStainLess Steel Media

Results 1 to 16 of 16

Thread: 3D printer questions?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master bikerbeans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,480

    3D printer questions?

    I am currently loading 3d sabots I received from a friend on another forum. I have not touched a CAD program in 10 years and my experience was limited to 2d envirnomental site plans.

    Ok, so what do you 3D wizards suggest for equipment and software for a rank novice? I am primarily interested in printing wads and sabots for shotguns and muzzleloaders.

    Also, what are your thoughts on which plastic to use for sabots and wads?

    Thanks,

    BB

  2. #2
    Boolit Master Cap'n Morgan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    1,050
    I only have experience with the professional (read: expensive) programs like SolidWorks, but I would suggest you look into some of the free 3-D programs like Google's SketchUp Free. Here's a list of some 3-D freebies: https://www.lifewire.com/free-3d-software-list-2005

    Best plastic would probably be Polyethylene (PE) or polypropylene (PP) both are used in commercial wads.
    Cap'n Morgan

  3. #3
    Moderator

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    The Pacific NorthWet
    Posts
    1,686
    I usually use OpenSCAD, it is sort of a programmers' 3D CAD tool, free. I find it easier to use than Sketchup for my purposes, but your mileage may vary. (Some things just depend on the user, not saying anything bad about Sketchup, it's very popular - it's just that my brain deals better with OpenSCAD.)

  4. #4
    Software wise I use RS Designsparck Mechanical as its easy to use and free.
    https://www.rs-online.com/designspar...nical-software

    Printer wise any i3 clone is a good start. Cheap printers and time tested with good community support as very popular.

  5. #5
    I like solidworks and have a copy. Some like sketchup as mentioned above.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Houston TX
    Posts
    755
    Use SolidWorks for 3-D models. Have made a lot of sheet metal parts and plastic parts using SolidWorks. Have used the program for many years as an engineer, now retired still use it a lot at the house and have my own copies of SolidWorks and AutoCad Mechanical.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master bikerbeans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,480
    Anyone have experience printing with nylon filament? After reviewing the specs on the many filament types it seems that nylon may be a good choice for a slug wad. I couldn't find PP or PE filament.

    Turns out a good friend of mine who owns a metallizing company has a 3D system for printing client STLs. I create the file and he will print it.

    BB

  8. #8
    Yes, Nylon is a nightmare to handle and print. It absorbs water like a sponge.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy



    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    483
    I enjoy using 123D CAD, but it is no longer available with design support. The company letting 123D go as free ware was sold and the new owners upgraded 123D into a for-fee version, and made a dumbed down version as an online-only tool, called TinkerCAD.
    However, you can download 123D from the WayBackMachine, if needed. I did that when I bought a new computer and realized the program was gone from freeware. Worked fine using the wayback.

    I have not printed nylon. I have heard what the other above say, it is expensive, has toxic fumes, and needs careful humidity care and storage. I recommend something else, unless you've good ventilation and are stubborn enough to follow the process for using nylon. I have decided to not bother, at least for the time being.

    Bulldogger

  10. #10
    Boolit Master Cap'n Morgan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    1,050
    I noticed you can get High Impact Polystyrene (HIPS) for 3-D print. I had some wads for my Brenneke injection molded from HIPS and they held up extremely well.
    Cap'n Morgan

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    248
    Unless you're only looking for prototyping the wads,(and then having them made using injection molding for example) I think you'll be disappointed in current 3D printing technology for printing wads. Printing 3D is slow, and a bit imprecise in tolerances, and you will need to consider the material properties in both design and use.

    For simple, and easy to use, tinkercad is web-based and free. I like OpenSCAD (also free), but its oriented toward programmers rather than artists. FreeCAD is as powerful as stuff you pay for, but is a bit more complex than, say tinkercad.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master bikerbeans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,480
    Quote Originally Posted by Cap'n Morgan View Post
    I noticed you can get High Impact Polystyrene (HIPS) for 3-D print. I had some wads for my Brenneke injection molded from HIPS and they held up extremely well.
    Thank you for that information.

    BB

  13. #13
    Moderator

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    The Pacific NorthWet
    Posts
    1,686
    Suggestion; Instead of 3d printing each wad, look at making a mold and getting the wads injection molded once you've prototyped the design; far faster per unit you make. Urethane is relatively easy to cast, unsure how well it'd work for 12ga wads but worth looking at; Look at local model train groups for access to cheap injection etc. molds as they usually have found someone local who is willing, for train scale model stuff (landscaping etc. for their train layout.) You can get a lot of injection molded or cast parts produced in the same time as 1 3d printed part; 3d printing shines in prototyping one-offs though, molding one new wad variant would be NUTS!

  14. #14
    Boolit Master bikerbeans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,480
    I like the idea of the 3D printer because I can make changes easily compared to a mold. If i happen to create a miracle wad I might consider letting someone else use the design for a production wad. I have owned a couple small businesses and if i ever start another one it will not be in the gun & ammo industry.

    Another thought on a mold. I have 3 rifled 12ga shotguns and all three have a different groove diameter. Rifled slug guns are just big bore low pressure rifles and they behave like rifles. Your FB slug or sabored bullet must have a OD at or over the groove diameter. A mold for the masses would need to be oversize to work in loose barrels, but this might be a problem if shot in a tight barrel gun.

    Myself, I doubt I will shoot more than a couple hundred saboted slugs and fullbore slugs in a year. I think a 3D printer will more than keep up.

    I did shoot a 3 shot 2.25" 60 yard group today with a 12ga x 44 cal sabot using a 325g JFN bullet. Big improvement over first testing session, but a long way yet to go.

    BB
    Last edited by bikerbeans; 04-12-2018 at 04:44 PM.

  15. #15
    It’s not worth it for me, I shoot about 100 to 200 slugs a month and it only takes a few hours to print them and I don’t have to babysit it. It also lets me play with new designs and tweaks easily.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Sheesh View Post
    Suggestion; Instead of 3d printing each wad, look at making a mold and getting the wads injection molded once you've prototyped the design; far faster per unit you make. Urethane is relatively easy to cast, unsure how well it'd work for 12ga wads but worth looking at; Look at local model train groups for access to cheap injection etc. molds as they usually have found someone local who is willing, for train scale model stuff (landscaping etc. for their train layout.) You can get a lot of injection molded or cast parts produced in the same time as 1 3d printed part; 3d printing shines in prototyping one-offs though, molding one new wad variant would be NUTS!

  16. #16
    Moderator

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    The Pacific NorthWet
    Posts
    1,686
    If you made wads with deep enough "lube grooves" they could engrave in the rifling & handle different barrel ID's I'd think.
    Last edited by Mr_Sheesh; 04-13-2018 at 01:18 AM. Reason: Evicted an evil typo.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check