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Experimenting with Rapid Prototyping Dr. Jim Flowers Technology Education Program Ball State University and Something Called Custom Intersections.

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Presentation on theme: "Experimenting with Rapid Prototyping Dr. Jim Flowers Technology Education Program Ball State University and Something Called Custom Intersections."— Presentation transcript:

1 Experimenting with Rapid Prototyping Dr. Jim Flowers Technology Education Program Ball State University and Something Called Custom Intersections

2 Rapid Prototyping Technology can Help your students make professional-quality products without all those skills Make a link between digital designs and physical objects Allow students to make successive changes to designs, and then see the effects of those changes Produce parts needed for larger assemblies

3 Ball State’s Rapid Prototyping Lab Technologies Include

4 3D Laser Scanning

5 Laser Cutting & Engraving

6 CAD/CAM Milling

7 Computer Numerical Control Turning (NC Lathe)

8 Fused Deposition Modeling

9 Color Solid Object Printing

10 Other Technologies in the RP Lab Tensile tester Coordinate measuring machine Plastics granulator, drier, and filament extruders Manual fabrication tools Vacuum formers

11 But RP technologies can also support student experimentation. They allow the user to control several variables and perform repeated builds changing only the levels of independent variables. There is so much we really don’t know, and experimentation can help us find the answers.

12 For example: Optimizing Laser Settings Power Speed Focal Point Pulses per inch Lines per inch

13 An Experimental Approach to… Everything Orr, T., & Flowers, J. (2014). An experimental approach to… everything! Technology & Engineering Teacher, 73(8), 8-12.

14 Determining the effect of FDM build orientation on tensile strength (T. Orr)

15 Hey Jim, can you 3D print onto cloth? (Rene Church) Kyle Samuels, a student in a graduate course on Inquiries into Rapid Prototyping, at Ball State found out. Samuels, K., & Flowers, J. (In Press). Can your students 3D print onto cloth? Technology and Engineering Teacher.

16 Successful build test at material’s surface Failed attempt on 100% cotton with a simple weave Post wash test Denim adhesion strength test

17 Can you make 3D printer filament? Orr, T., & Flowers, J. (In Press). Learning through plastic filament extrusion. Technology and Engineering Teacher.

18 Slide 1 Image from Image from

19 Can you use RP to create Flexographic Image Carriers? Dr. Renmei Xu Flowers, J., & Xu, R. (April, 2011). Exploring a connection: Prototyping graphic image carriers. Technology and Engineering Teacher e, 70(7), 1-6. Xu, R. & Flowers, J. C. (2009). Flexographic platemaking using rapid prototyping technologies. FlexoGlobal, 2 (1),

20 Flexo- Image Carriers from Powdered Solid Object Printing?

21 Flexo- Image Carriers from FDM?

22 Flexo- Image Carriers from Laser Engraving?

23 Can you laser- etch an intaglio plate? Xu, R., Londt, S., & Flowers, J. (2013). The effects of laser-engraving settings on cliché etch depth and pad printing quality. Journal of Print and Media Technology Research, 2(1),

24 Can you laser- etch an intaglio plate?

25 Can you laser-etch an intaglio plate? Yes, but what are the effects of laser-engraving settings on cliché etch depth and pad printing quality?

26 Can lasers be used to create stencils? Xu, R., Londt, S. C., Kellogg, H. P. (2010). Evaluation of different stencilmaking methods for screen printing (pp ). Sewickley, PA: Proceedings of TAGA 62nd Annual Technical Conference.

27 Can lasers be used to create stencils? Yes, but what is the effect of…

28 Can you Upcycle with a laser? Xu, R., Flowers, J. (2011). Engineering a greener process: Laser cutter transforms printing waste. Tech Directions, 71(2),

29 Can you Upcycle with a laser?

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32 Advertisement New undergrad and grad class at Ball State: Green Prototyping & Upcycling, where students – Design, prototype, and test products to promote environmental sustainability – Upcycle with laser cutters/engravers – Attempt to extrude their own 3D filament from post-consumer resins and 3D print with it May be used as an elective in our Master of Arts in Technology Education

33 Assisting others in their research: Kevin Barnes & Kamal Islam Scanned warbler model 3D printed 10 decoys Decoys were painted and added to buckets playing songs to attract cerulean warblers to nest. Kevin Barns, 2014, Master of Science Thesis Project: Cerulean Warbler Habitat Selections: Behavioral or Structural. Kamal Islam, PhD, Advisor. Photos of Kevin and Kamal courtesy of Kamal Islam at

34 So many experiments! Optimizing parameters Effects of parameters on products Properties based on build orientation Designing new 3D printer filament Adding inserts during 3D printing Adhesion, finishing, etc., of 3D printed parts Testing out new processes and many, many more…

35 Custom Intersections


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