Dec 22, 2015

The 3D Printed Snowman Ornament

The positive results on the Christmas Tree decoration design inspired me to create additional holiday decoration models. The natural next step in designs which are vertically symmetrical seemed to be a snowman for sure. I experimented with it in the prior post - so this time I'll describe the whole 3D Snowman model.

Design Goals

I was aiming here for simplicity and ease in printing as well as just extending the simple design I already proved in the prior christmas tree model. That is, two mostly flat parts designed to easily fit together to form a three-dimensional look, and something easy to hang on a tree or stand up on a shelf.

Snowman Design

tiny version with filled parts
The Snowman is simple - just 3 circles, reduced in size from bottom to top and put together at their tangents. I added a top hat for design detail, a hanging loop above the hat and a small tab at the base so that it can fit into a stand. The stand didn't have to be designed, as I just re-used the one from the prior Christmas Tree design.

The first version had filled-in circles, but in the final design, I hollowed out each circle to make it lighter and slightly more elegant (who am I to judge)... Ok, I really did that to make it print super fast ;)

To hollow out the circles, I used the "Shell" tool in 123D, but there are two tricks: 

First, to get a thick enough shell, you might have to initially thicken the height of the object, as the modeling tool won't let you have a shell width that is greater than the height of the object (since it is also trying to shell the bottom). 

Second, once you have the shell, to get rid of the bottom layer, you simply select that inner bottom face and "Pull" (actually, Push) that face in the negative direction beyond it's thickness and it will simply disappear.

The Model

Here is a link to the the model:

The Snowman - Three parts in total - two snowman parts and a stand.

1 comment:

  1. Nice post. I am happy to visit your blog. Thank you so much for sharing.

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