LabTable: Printed Minimate
December 19, 2013

In early 2013, I purchased a consumer 3D printer. Not one of the industrial types that Shapeways uses, but an open source, plastic extruding, home model. Specifically the Ditto from Tinkerines Studios. After assembly and many hours of refinement I started printing Minimate parts. Large Minimate parts.

Using the models I created for animation I was able to produce a scaled-up version of the basic Minimate.

Like anything new there are bound to be problems. I printed many versions of the various pieces to get the fit and feel just right. I've also had a couple controller chips die so I end up waiting for replacement parts.

Print lines are very obvious in these early prints. It seemed whenever I would print a torso, about halfway through the printer would get off track just a bit. It would either skip layers or go over the edge a bit. It's gotten better, but still not ideal.

Also you can see the little blobs that indicated the starting point of each layer. These have been minimized quite a bit with recent prints. But I'm still sanding and filling to get the finish I want.

I've also purchased the Ditto Upgrade Kit that should improve prints as well. Unfortunately it uses a thinner plastic filament so I have to use up my stock of plastic before upgrading. I've got about three spools to go.

This is still an ongoing project. I don't yet have a fully assembled jumbo Minimate. When I do, it will be posted here.