ICER: a 2m² 3D printed patron St. George

3D printing allows the creation of unique designs. As you may have seen before in the video Eric Huls [DUTCH] of Innovation Center ICER started a remarkable project: printing a two square meter model of patron St. George. After successfully printing a smaller prototype, now the real work begins…

ICER Eric Huls

Challenges

Eric is now building part for part a patron of St. George that is entirely 3D printed. Many aspects come into play: building volume, strength, finishing and weather conditions. All this needs to be taken into account during the building process. Building a 2m² that is fully 3D printed required re-approaching the design process entirely. You need to conceptualise what the final model will look like and take the 3D printed properties into account when designing the different parts.

According to Eric the project is one big challenge: “I came across several issues and I decided how to solve them on the spot. For instance, I underestimated the required time and the finishing touch. During the project I have learned that I have to slice the parts in a different way. Another challenge you need to take into account is the size of the project; I have never printed such large models with ABS and this requires a different approach than printing smaller models. You have to take the dimensions into account, so that each part fits perfectly and it becomes a whole. It is a matter of experience; you learn along the way”.

Large prints and no filament wasting

Because the prints are so big, the Filament Management Module is a big help. Each part takes about 80 till 111 hours and requires a lot of material: “You don’t want to take the risk destroying your print because of out-of-filament. Thanks to the module the 3D printer automatically switches to the second roll and it continues printing. Also, you have no more filament wasting and you can re-use and finish your filament rolls completely”, says Eric.

Current state

So far, Eric has been working on the project for about 600/700 hours. Currently he is working on the wing for the dragon. After securing the wing to the torso of the dragon, Eric will continue with the bottom part of the dragon: “I work from bottom to top”. Eric uses acetone to secure the parts. The big advantage is that there are no glue residues. Also, the gaps are filled with acetone to make the model resistant against weather influences. After securing the entire model, Eric will plaster, polish and prime the entire 3D model for a beautiful finish.

Support

Eric bought 4 dddrop 3D printers for realizing this project: “I am still very satisfied with the dddrop 3D printers. In case of any issues I receive great support from dddrop and CAD2M. They come up with solutions and give me tips to obtain the best results”.

Eric hopes the project will be finished the second week of July. This way it is finished before the local fairground and everyone can get a glance of patron St. George.