Due to the size of the pieces I was pushing the 3D printer a bit to produce all of them. I was very impressed with the Ultimaker 2+ which the university has upgraded this year. Mercury and Venus (2 day print) came out beautifully and I am really pleased with how they look and feel in person;
Jupiter and Saturn didn’t go quite as smoothly. What potentially happened was, due to the height of the larger piece (I put them in this orientation to avoid having a massive cleaning job with the support structure), it moved slightly during printing and caught on the hot nozzle of the 3D printer causing it to come out of alignment meaning the 3D printer proceeded to print in thin air. However, despite this issue, I am very very pleased with the outcome and how the pieces catch the light.
To repair the piece I measure the exact high of the printed piece and sliced the piece in Rhino and 3D printed the small missing piece. I followed this by sanding down both sides a bit to match them perfectly. I then glued the two piece together, put car body filler in the gap and sanded it all flush.
I CNC cut Earth, Moon and Mars, as it is much cheaper than 3D printing and I can paint easily onto the pink model foam. There is also no support structure to worry about so the finish should be pristine.
I have also decided to so this with Neptune and Uranus because due to their shape and height the support structure would be extensive, not only making the 3D print expensive and long but the finish would not be as good as a CNC cut. CNC cutting does take a lot longer to set up than a 3D print so I will be waiting on these in the next week.
The shape of the sun had to be 3D printed. I have however, given myself a task and a half to get the support structure out of all the undercuts, however, the print looks amazing, so it will be worth it!
The 3D printer at work-