The 3D Model - Multi-part againGiven my obsession with multi-part objects, I figured I should also try that here. Actually - the motivation is more of a practical goal of "getting complex things to print". Most 3D Printers still cannot print everything you design so easily - they specifically have issues with something called (ironically) "bridging" - where there is some part of an object which has not supporting material to the ground. In the bridge project - no surprise - there would be a long span which has no support from the bottom. So - printing the bridge in parts (which is actually how real bridges are made, right?) seemed logical and practical.
The DesignI set out to design a suspension bridge which was visually modeled after the Verrazano Narrows bridge, in Brooklyn, NY. This bridge opened in 1964, and has some really interesting facts around it's construction and use (including being the starting point for the NYC Marathon). But I didn't set out to mimic it's relative dimensions - I just estimated by eye what would look good. I decided to construct it in 3 parts - the tall stanchions, the short stanchions and the cables. You can see how some of the parts look on the 3D Printer bed to get a better sense of what the parts are.
Let me know in the comments if you have ideas on how to use this in a real school lesson or how you think I could change the model to make it more useful or interesting. I've got plenty of time to do stuff like that (uh... not really). I'll post this model soon in a place where anyone can download it.