Daughter No 1 is the one who 3d printed the vase. here she is going to explain the Epicyclic Gears shown below.
This epicyclic gear set (also known as planetary gears) is 3D printed in one operation as a complete moving part. The term planetary comes from the inner gears (the planets) orbiting the central sun gear. This type of gear set is often used in automatic vehicle transmissions as it can handle large amounts of torque in a very compact form. The gear teeth are V shaped meaning they lock in place along the axis of the gear, so this widget does not come apart, nor could it be assembled from its individual component parts. It can only be created using 3D printing.
It is printed using Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM), as was the vase, and is made of Polylactic Acid plastic (PLA) – a biodegradable thermoplastic derived from natural resources such as corn starch or sugar cane. The lines visible on the surface of the widget are indicative of the path the print head took as it laid down a 0.4mm wide bead of molten plastic which fused together to form the completed widget. The component parts are printed with just enough clearance between themselves and their neighbouring part that the beads of plastic of each part do not fuse with those of the other parts, resulting in a working assembly of seven individual parts all printed together.
Printed epicyclic gear, a thing of beauty and great fun to play with!
I baked a cake today – Blackberry, Apple and Date Cake and it is scrumptious, especially with a dollop of Creme Fraiche.
Blackberry, Apple and Date Cake