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PoV
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:09 pm    Post subject: 3D Printing Reply with quote

It's been a wild week (running around doing errands, visiting Dad in hospital, but he's finally recovering at home). In the middle of all that, my 3D Printer showed up.



The printer is the Cetus3D, a low cost (but high quality) 3D Printer from TierTime (Chinese manufacturer of the "Up" 3D Printers, which are highly regarded).

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/854865943/cetus3d-at-199-get-all-you-need-to-start-3d-printi

This is their first foray in to the budget market, and IMO it's actually a pretty excellent 3D Printer (even in its buggy day-1 state). I paid $199 USD + Shipping ($75), regular $299. Printers can be bought for cheaper, but the quality looked excellent for the price (very stable thanks to the all-metal construction, limiting wobble artifacting).


So between running around the past few days, I've been familiarizing myself with the printer. I assembled an unboxing+assembly+printing video, because I could:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cgs4675jOtA

Trying out some new software on my Phone (PowerDirector). I haven't done this sort of thing in a while, so it was also so I could get practiced again making videos.


There are a number of 3D Printing technologies, but almost all "consumer" (prosumer?) printers are FDM printers (fused deposit modeling). I.e. it draws multiple layers of melted plastic on top of eachother. Furthermore, there are a wide variety of plastics used for 3D Printing, but in general most plastic filaments fall in to 2 classes: ABS and PLA. ABS is a plastic made from petroleum, and is best known as the plastic used to make Lego's. PLA is made of food starches (corn, sugar), so for obvious reasons PLA is the more environmentally friendly option. It also has no odor while melting, which is ideal if you don't have proper ventilation handy.

Each class of plastic has its own advantages. ABS is harder, more temperature resistant, but will warp if not cooled properly. PLA tends to be more brittle, deform in prolonged exposure to sunlight, but has minimal warping. There are a number of other plastics, but each tends to be referred to as "ABS like" or "PLA like". As an example, ASA is an ABS-like plastic that doesn't change color when exposed to UV light (you know how old electronic devices tend to discolor). On the PLA side the big thing is modified PLA's. For example, I have a few plastics in my collection that claim to be stronger (higher impact resistance) than ABS. Plus certain PLA's can be baked in the oven to make them more heat resistant than ABS (the downside being that they shrink a bit).

There's a lot of interesting chemistry things to learn about when it comes to 3D printers. :). The plastics themselves ARE the same plastics used for everything you see and use in your day-to-day, but injection molding (how most things are made) does make stronger parts (layered plastic doesn't bond together as well as molten plastic).

The Cetus3D lacks a chamber (heat control) and a heated bed, so it's primarily useful for low warp plastics like PLA and PLA-likes. You **could** print ABS with it, but it would warp, and that's really undesirable.


I've been sitting on a decent collection of PLA filaments, so I've been printing "Benchies":



This boat model has became the unofficial "hello world" of 3D printing. Each Benchy is using a different plastic, and with the exception of the white one in the background, is printed without supports. Supports, as the name suggests, is just extra plastic printed so that when something needs to print over a gap, it stays flat and doesn't droop (after all, this is still hot plastic).



With care, you can design (and orient) a 3D model such that supports are unnecssary. You can't do that with every model, but some you can (like the benchy).

For the most part, I've figured out what temperatures to use for all the filament in my collection. I had a sample of a Wood composite PLA that I didn't quite dial in correctly.



Seen above is an artifact called "stringing". This happens when the excess plastic in the nozzle droops out as the print head moves. The Cetus3D software is good: Extremely simple. Problem is though I'm going to need some advanced controls to get Wood PLA working correctly: Retraction (i.e. sucking the filament back-up so it doesn't drip while moving), possibly tweaking the print speed, and the heat. Wood PLA's are neat, in that they do contain actual particles of wood, so higher temperatures can be used to darken them slightly. Anyway, I used up my sample, and cleaned up the stringy mess as good as I can. but it's still very rough looking. I'm sure eventually I'll order some more Wood filament. It has a neat feel to it.

Besides the Benchy's, I've been printing some actual useful stuff. Mainly this:



The Cetus3D came with a bunch of metal parts for making a spool holder. The spool holder however requires a 3D printed part to work best (hence why you see it laying down in my 1st photo). Cetus provides a reference part you can print, but it's a bit short, so instead I opted to use a part someone in the community created (the black one). It actually works quite well, but I found it was just a sliver too short for one of my filament rolls, so I modified the part and made it longer (the transparent one).



Here it is on the Cetus Spool Holder. I made it 1mm shorter than the bar... and I'm not sure why (ha). I could have made it 2mm longer, and it would hide the end-cap slightly.

That brings up another interesting part of 3D printing: Nozzles and layers. The Cetus3D comes with 0.2mm, 0.4mm and 0.6mm nozzles. 0.4mm is the standard, used for most of the above prints. Filaments that contain particles (i.e. Wood, Metal, Glow in the dark) you tend to want to use a wider nozzle, hence the 0.6mm, which I used for my Wood print. 0.2mm is your super-fine detail, but with added detail comes more work. The finer the detail, the more time it takes to print.

As an example, a Benchy without supports takes about 80 minutes to print with "normal" settings (0.4mm nozzle, 0.2mm layer hight, normal print speed). With supports (i.e. more plastic) it takes about 2 hours. Layer heights is another place to tweak precision. Most of my prints are the normal settings mentioned, but I did try printing my version of the spool holder using 0.15mm layer height. I forgot to print supports the first time, but with supports and 25% thinner layers (plus more of them), printing the spool holder went from just over 1 hour to just over 2. Comparing the two, the 0.15mm version is certainly far smoother feeling (but the 0.2mm is actually quite smooth too). The wood, I believe I used 0.3mm layer heights (to go with the 0.6mm nozzle).

Finally one last word on temperature: So far all of my prints have used tip temperatures between 190 and 210 degrees Celsius (375-410 F).

Okay, I think that's enough words. :)
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Edited by PoV on Mon Jan 30, 2017 3:13 pm; edited 2 times
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay more words.

The Cetus3D can be connected to via USB or WiFi. WiFi required some trickery, due to a bug in the software (it's like there are hundreds of WiFi SSID's in my apartment building, *cough* 5 of them are me). But after that fiddling, it now auto-connects to my network, and I can send prints and check the status of a print on the other side of my apartment. :)

The only downside: I need to reboot in to Windows to use the Cetus3D software (or set up a VM).

I originally didn't realize you could print over WiFi. I knew the printer had an iOS app for printing, and WiFi support, but didn't realize the desktop app supported WiFi too. Fortunately it does. :). I had a crazy plan that involved using some wacky Linux software for sharing a USB port, but it turns out the feature (USBIP) is not well supported on Windows anymore (the Linux side is now built-in to the Linux Kernel, but Windows side got abandoned). Alas, I couldn't get that working. But the world was saved once I got native WiFi working.

Importing things to print (and fixing things you're printing) can be done from a variety of software's (.STL files), but I did my tweak above using Blender. Blender just so happens to support importing and exporting STL files, and what's especially nice is that the units in Blender are treated as exactly 1mm by the Cetus3D software.

I tried printing a 3D model of a TAC-2 joystick, but I didn't scale it up enough, so when it printed there was no shaft on the joystick (just supports holding up the ball). I'll have to try again later. This is relatively common though: any details that are too small to print with the current nozzle tend to get omitted.

Oh, and I didn't mention Flexible filaments. I have a bunch of flexible filament too, but I haven't printed any yet. Flexibles are like the name suggests: Flexible. Flexibles can be tricky to print, as some of the extra flexible ones either stick or stay molten too long. Some flexibles are more flexible than others, and for that matter all plastics have different degrees of flexibility.

* * *

So at this point I'm just trying to learn about the printer. What I can do with it, what I can get away with. I don't have any specific projects lined up, but I would like to try making a trophy I can send to some of the people that win the next Ludum Dare event (it's our 15th anniversary, so). Also I have a pepper mill I'd like to fix, by outright replacing a plastic part.

On order I have a couple new filaments. A super strong (impact resistant) PLA (Polymax), a roll of an anti-bacterial PLA (better suited for kids toys that end up in mouths, or used in the kitchen/bathroom), and an ordinary roll of silver PLA (just to pad my order).

I'd like to add some more color variety, so I'll probably order more. I'm waiting to hear back from a company in Montreal with good pricing. In general, filament costs about $20-$25 USD for a 1 kg spool (i.e. 1000 g, or 2.2 lbs). For reference, a benchy without supports and simple infill uses about 10 g. Fancier filaments tend to cost more though (Flex, Wood, Glow in the dark, PETG, etc).

* * *

I've set up my Cetus3D in a closet, the same closet I have my regular laser printer, but on the top shelf. The 1st photo seen above shows me getting it working in my living/dining room (on top of my freezer, where I photograph most things). This is nice because I can close the door to kill the sound, or do nothing if I'm way on the other side of the apartment.

I'm fairly confident with the Cetus3D now, that I don't need to watch it. I can start a print, and walk away. Part of that has to do with the filament too. Spools that are cleanly wound (most spools you buy today) turn smoothly, but I do have one filament (the transparent one) with a poor winding. It was a cheap generic spool from China for like $15. I try to be a bit more attentive when I use it, just in case (it sometimes tugs the filament stand). Some of my larger spools rock a bit while unwinding, so another thing I might try making is a slightly wider (fatter) part for the spool holder, so there's more surface area.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



A video looking at the flammability of 3d printed plastics. Interestingly PETG (a stronger PLA-like) didn't catch fire, and neither did plain PLA, but composite PLA's did. I was planning on getting some PETG to try it out (once I hear back from the cheap place). If it turns out it's also less flammable, then that does seem to make it ideal for enclosures too.
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting stuff. I had always wondered how tough these plastic models are when they're done. For example, do you think you could print something simple that would support your weight?

Also, because of the printing method being layered, I had wondered if the plastic would 'shear' if you put pressure at the wrong angle. Could you print a coat hanger for example, would it survive general yanking and pulling?

Obviously its fun to print models and stuff, but I really like the idea of making and printing little widgets that you might need around the house.
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PoV
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 1:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ren wrote:
do you think you could print something simple that would support your weight?

Ha! It would really depend on the design. Like I could probably sit on a large solid cube made of lego, but a hollow cube, I'd have my doubts. It's very much the "bed of nails" phenomenon.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bed_of_nails

With enough weight distribution, sure, you can stand/sit on anything. But if care isn't taken here, it'll totally break.

Ren wrote:
Also, because of the printing method being layered, I had wondered if the plastic would 'shear' if you put pressure at the wrong angle.

Yes, this is definitely a thing. The angle you print something plays a significant role in how strong the part is. The grains (layers) is by far the weakest axis, since it's just the raw adhesion of plastic connecting it.

As an example, this catapult I printed. I printed it using thinner layers (0.15mm vs 0.2mm or 0.3mm), which made it stiffer and less flexible. I never even got to fire a shot, the spoon part broke off at the seams before I could latch it.



The advantage of this orientation is that I was able to print it without support materials (i.e. using less plastic), but if I was to print it sideways, the bar that flexes would have been much stronger.

Ren wrote:
Could you print a coat hanger for example, would it survive general yanking and pulling?

It should yes. In this case you'd want to print it flat. That way, the weakest axis is the short flat side. Typically when you stress a coat hanger, it's gravity pulling it down, your you pulling to the wide side. And even though you would sometimes pull the short side, it's the lines as a whole, and not in the middle (like where the catapult snapped). You'd also want to use a stronger plastic due to the weight of some clothes, or a plastic you can treat (i.e. bake) to improve strength.

The print volume of my printer is roughly 180 mm or 7 inches cubed, so I couldn't print a full sized coathanger. That said I could certainly print something for holding belts and ties.

* * *

So like I mentioned I was going to do, I designed a new spool adapter for the spool holder, and let it print overnight (0.4mm nozzle, 0.15mm layers, fine detail mode (slower, instead of normal), and with 15% infill (instead of 13%)).



I was finding that the one I originally printed didn't do much to stop my bigger rolls from rocking/thumping. It has a much wider diameter, but still small enough to fit every spool of filament I own (50mm-55mm on average).

I went through a few different iterations (v3, v2, and v1).



Designed in Blender.

The 1st version required supports, but versions 2 and 3 included a slight slope along the inner edges of the lip, so that filament wouldn't droop over the edge. This is mainly an issue for the bottom side of the top edge, but I tried to made the design symmetrical.



You can see a harsh edge in v1 and v2. I noticed on my printer this 45 degree angle wouldn't print as clean as it should. So simple fix was to round-out that 45 degree angle. Completely superficial, I wanted to fix it. The modified design also saves a 1-2 grams of filament.

And heh, printing it in white, with the black cap on my spool holder, it looks like an Onigiri (rice ball). ;)

So fun fun. I'm getting used to it as a tool.

* * *

EDIT: Just found a decent reference list of where each type of plastic is used. Yoink!

Quote:

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene ABS (the stuff Lego is made from)
Polystyrene PS (Commonly found in: Product packaging)
Polycarbonate PC (Commonly found in: Drinks bottles)
Polypropylene PP (Commonly found in: Buckets, spades, chairs, everything!)
Polyethylene (Commonly found in: sheet and foamed sheet)
PE (Commonly found in: Insulating cases, bottles)
Polyvinyl Chloride PVC (Commonly found in: straws, plastic pipes)
Acrylic PMMA (Commonly found in: Light up signs)
PETg (Commonly found in: Food safe molds)
HIPS (Commonly found in: Disposable cups)

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 3:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've started wondering more about how my printer is made (and what the spool holder is made out of too).



Turns out it's something called V-Slot. And there was a Kickstarter for it way back it 2013.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/openrail/openbuilds-v-slot

They can be purchased directly from the creator for ... I guess, not too bad a price (less that $4 for a nearly 10" piece).

http://openbuildspartstore.com/linear-rail/

I'm fairly certain there are Chinese knock-offs available by now, and that my printer *must* be made using them. That said, the stability/quality is still extremely good.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have some new plastics!

There are 3 local sellers I'm been buying filament from:

- Filaments.ca
- Boots Industries
- CreatorFuel (new)

I also have a generic roll from an AliExpress seller, but I wont be buying from them again.

I've ordered the three roughly in the order of cost.

- Filament from Filaments.ca tends to be the most expensive, but they have by far the best collection (lots of house-brand filament, plus they're the exclusive Canadian distributor of nearly every notable brand of premium filament from around the world). I did manage to get 2x 1kg rolls from them for about $26 CAD each on sale, but I've paid as much as $60 for a premium roll from them.
- Boots Industries was the 1st company I ordered from, but they only have their own brand. I did the math and their rolls are a bit more pricey at $31-$35 for 1kg (there's a trick to get a 10% off coupon), but they sell 750g rolls, so they don't quite look so expensive. They brag about making their filament using a non-standard but the best PLA plastic pellets for 3D printing, and on paper it's supposed to be very strong. Some of my PLA's are quite brittle, and snap easily. The Boots does take more effort to break, but I did notice the cheap Filaments.ca PLA was similarly strong, without claiming to be made from idealistic plastic pellets. It also comes in some very vibrant colors (an extremely bright white), and the (paper) spools spin perfectly... but they're paper spools, which break far easier than plastic (shouldn't be an issue though). Anyways, the OTHER thing, another company that makes a PLA using the same plastic pellets recommends their PLA for Annealing (i.e. baking at low temperatures to improve the crystallization/strength of the plastic). So despite it being a bit more costly than the general PLA from Filaments.ca, it might actually be stronger. I need to do some science though.
- Creator Fuel is another company. They appear to be a reseller of generic Chinese made filaments, with prices as low as $22 a spool (and $10 flat-rate shipping). Specialty filaments have great prices. Wood, Flexible, and PETG are all available for $29 per 1kg spool, which is at least $15 cheaper than Filaments.ca. They also do glow-in-the-dark for $25 a spool. That said, I found my roll of their cheap PLA to be surprisingly brittle (snapping easily). It may ultimately be worth buying my regular PLA from elsewhere (boots), but they have some nice inexpensive options for padding an order (the more items you buy, the more you can break-up that $10 flat rate shipment).

I got a bunch of stuff from Filaments.ca earlier in the week:



- Silver PLA (I left the raft on so friends could see what a raw print looked like)
- Silver Antibacterial PLA (yes, this is a plastic designed to kill germs. Ideal for making things for the kitchen/bathroom)
- Yellow Polymax (supposed to be the strongest PLA but $60 a spool)

And today I got my first order from Creator Fuel:



- Green PLA (nice neon green, it's actually more neon looking than this in person)
- Transparent PETG (PLA-like, but a completely different plastic that prints a bit differently)
- Wood PLA (not shown, I still need to print)



Excuse the bad focus, but mainly I was trying to show that the detailing of the PETG print was nearly on-par with the PLA. I might have printed it a bit hot. It's the first plastic that I've seen really pre-ooze out of the nozzle, and also the 1st filament I've come across that recommends printing with a large gap between the surface the nozzle.

It *should* be stronger than typical PLA, but I have some modified PLA's (Polymax, Boots) that claim greater strength, so I can't entirely be sure it's my strongest plastic ... not yet anyway.

Next up I need to print the new-wood. That requires me to change the nozzle though, so I wanted to finish writing this post first. ;)
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 1:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote



That was my challenge this evening.

You should be able to see a lighter colored strand above. That's what's leftover from the original Wood PLA sample I printed the original wood-boat with (i.e. the stringing example in the first post). Shown so I can compare the two woods. The colors are close, but this new wood is slightly darker.

Unfortunately, the stringing was just as bad as the boat shown in the first post. 5 tries later, I finally found a way to print the boat, mostly without stringing.

I apparently didn't photograph that though. Ha! I guess I wanted to print a highres boat to show/check if I did figure it out.

I did print something cool though.



Yes, all that effort learning to make clean prints with the wood PLA, I go out of my way to make a rough-looking crate. :D
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 1:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So heh, it hasn't taken me long to accumulate quite the collection of plastics.

I ended up re-purposing a storage box just to fit them all.



The Antibacterial, the eSun PLA+, the Polymaker PLAs (Polymax, Polyflex), my 3x 1kg spools from CreatorFuel (Green, Wood, and transparent PETG), as well as a cheapo transparent PLA, and a few samples strewn about (Blue, Green, White, Flexible white).



The black and white "Boots Industries" filaments, and the Black and Silver "Filaments.ca" filaments.

I'm looking to add a few more colors (Light Blue, Orange, Red) from Boots, once I get a 10% off coupon. I'm also tempted to grab the glow-in-the-dark and another flexible from CreatorFuel, but then I want to add 1 more to pad the order to keep the shipping down. The only other color I don't have covered that CreatorFuel has is .. Pink. :)


After a bit of digging, it sounds like PETG is supposed to be a "Food Safe" filament. PLA in general should be mostly food safe, but the dyes are potentially a negative, and the bump surfaces a perfect place for bacteria to grow. That said, I have the antibacterial PLA as well, and though not specifically called out as safe by the FDA, it's has a bunch of certifications that it does kill bacteria.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Yes, all that effort learning to make clean prints with the wood PLA, I go out of my way to make a rough-looking crate. :D


And the real twist is how well it turned out!
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It gets better. :)


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 5:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those look really good for some home brew board game set pieces. Wow. :]
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm up to something... ;)



Everything about it wrong (ergonomics, colors, joystick doesn't actually fit, etc), but this is something I'm playing with: Redesigning the TAC-2 with fancy arcade parts.

The above I designed without having the correct parts. Now that I have them, I can redo it so the parts actually fit. That, and make it more comfortable to hold.


I ordered some Orange filament last week, it showed up, but the spool was broken.



My plan is to print the top and bottom in different colors (black and something), but I'm waiting for the design to stabilize first, and using cheaper filaments as I print tests.

I have more color buttons too. Red, Yellow, and Black. I may toy with black outer rings, orange inner.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lets see if Instagram embedding works...


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks sweet. You didn't bother to smooth it out? :]
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm still working on it. Sanding it also tends to mute the color a bit.

I reprinted the top this afternoon. A had the screw holes in the wrong spot, so I couldn't mount the joystick. Now I can.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A variant:



Finally, I think I've settled on this:



The top view looks like a happy face.



Herein it should just be functional refinements.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I dunno, but the red case with black buttons looks sexy as fuck.

AS FUCK.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

:D

I've named the Joystick the T3 (for TAC-3, but I'm trying to avoid infringement).

It's turning in to a pretty neat little project. :D


Hardware wise it's just a mockup (moving parts, but wired to nothing). Ideally I'd like to have a USB and a 9-pin port on it, and some sort of switch. The switch would be for switching between different modes:

- USB mode. Two button HID compatible joystick.
- 9 Pin Atari Mode. Both buttons do the same thing. Compatible with Atari, Commodore, and pretty-much any device that supports Atari joysticks.
- 9 Pin Two button mode. Compatible with Sega Master System and MSX, and technically compatible with Atari capable devices too, but the right button wouldn't have any effect (unless games knew to look for a high signal on the pot, most don't).

If it had more buttons, it could be made Sega Genesis compatible too, but practically speaking you only ever have 1 hand on 1 button (the other is on the stick).

Thinking about it, it would make a decent controller for Pinball games. It's not quite side mounted, but seeing how many pinball machines use arcade buttons, it wouldn't feel out of place. Hold the joystick in two hands, use with your thumbs to flip the flippers.


In the back of my mind I'm considering what a "Pro" version would be too. Some rumble motors and an accelerometer would be a nice addition. For pinball an accelerometer could be used for tilt detection (just map it to virtual buttons). The accelerometer could make for a silly way to play driving games too (though that's more a gimmick). The thing I would do with a "Pro" version is add a shoulder button on each side. The way you (I) naturally grip the joystick, the finger is right there, and could push something. The tricky party is that since I'm using arcade buttons, they're quite tall, taking up a lot of internal space. It would require some engineering to have a top mounted button and a comfortable shoulder. I would also make some minor tweaks to the ergonomics. Basically, add a slight curve to the bottom for the underside of your hand. Finally a pair of system buttons, just because. Typical use would be as a pause button, and two of them because #symmetry.

That said, I don't think a pro version would be as popular as a simple retro version. Still, that's what my wishlist for an improved version looks like.


My version was quite expensive to make. I'm using authentic Sanwa arcade parts. It cost me about $50 USD for the stick, 8 buttons, and shipping. I have some cheaper alternatives on the way from China, but that's going to be a month or so. They appear to be Sanwa clone parts, so hopefully the quality is up to par and the sizes the same.

I don't know if there's a market for a small production run of high quality retro joysticks, but I am doing my homework just in case. The biggest hurdle looks to be the cost of getting an Injection mold made, easily a few thousand dollars... unless I get super DIY. The 3D printer is great for testing an idea, but nowhere good enough for production.


Anyway, I don't expect to be able to make these in quantity any time soon. Still, I think it could be an interesting project.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I found out I can order parts (buttons, sticks) directly from Sanwa in Japan.

http://global.rakuten.com/en/search/?sid=sanwadenshi&tl=101164

Shipping is decent. Cheapest option estimates 7 days, but I think there's a couple days of lead time. So I would expect about 2 weeks to arrive to me (versus 2-3 months for much of my China stuff).

I don't seem able to order bulk via this site though.

Stick (no metal plate): ~$19 US (~210 g, ~$4.50 shipping) - http://global.rakuten.com/en/store/sanwadenshi/item/lever_001/
Balls: ~$1.22 (~50 g, ~$1.30 shipping) - http://global.rakuten.com/en/store/sanwadenshi/item/lever_012/
24mm Buttons: ~$1.70 (~10 g) http://global.rakuten.com/en/store/sanwadenshi/item/button_003/

I believe the color "Huang" is the Yellow, bet all other colors are correctly English.

To contrast, for 1 stick and 8 buttons I paid: ~$70 CAD, which is about $54 USD
From this store: 3,712 + 600 (my shipping estimate) = $49.40 CAD, or $37.78 USD

* * *

I've ordered 3 balls from them (Orange, Green, and "Huang"). Rakuten is interesting. The store has to get back to me about the shipping cost first, before my order is complete.

* * *

I've also started doing some research on Seimitsu parts. Similar quality, but I've yet to find a good price (I found a site listing them as basically $10 for a stick, but no way to buy). They have an option for a 'low profile' pushbutton, which is nice.
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