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spinycheek

3D printed frag plug designs

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Reefwiser

It would be helpful in positioning of corals also how many times have we had corals that fall over but we don't want to leave them in that same place all the time. This would secure the coral this would be great for corals like hammers and frogspawn that do not encrust also.

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Sunstar

I generally dislike plugs, so if you come up with something smaller, less round I am on board, as it stands you have a unique idea. I love it .

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spinycheek

I'm starting to think a fitting that lets you turn any rubble or disc into an adaptable plug would be the most useful. As every scape is different, this would let you choose the size, shape and color that exactly matches your rockwork. It would be a little, discrete piece that is glued to the bottom of the rubble, then you can move it around and attach it to anything.

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braaap

I'm starting to think a fitting that lets you turn any rubble or disc into an adaptable plug would be the most useful. As every scape is different, this would let you choose the size, shape and color that exactly matches your rockwork. It would be a little, discrete piece that is glued to the bottom of the rubble, then you can move it around and attach it to anything.

 

Not a bad idea.

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spinycheek

Well, the "natural" plugs look like poo, so I'm starting over with that. In the meantime, here are revised softie smashers so they fit nicely in high density placement, the old ones butted up against each other.

 

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Injection molded Rock Anchor! Although, there is a size issue that I need to fix because they don't fit... :blink: and I'm not sure why.

 

IMG_0069.jpg

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HarryPotter

 

 

Injection molded Rock Anchor! Although, there is a size issue that I need to fix because they don't fit... :blink: and I'm not sure why.

 

IMG_0069.jpg

Maybe the injection molded ones are stiffer so you have to make the two prongs thinner in order to bend them to fit in egg crate?

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spinycheek

I should have clarified, they fit the egg crate fine, it's the threads that don't work. It seems like the plastic has excess elasticity so when I remove the part that makes the threads, the threads swell and fill in the spaces making them a different size than they are inside the mold. It's a weird phenomenon, the injection molded parts are compatible with the 3D printed parts and vice-versa, but they aren't compatible with other injection molded parts. This has been quite the educational endeavor for me and I have a new found respect for LEGOs, that's some high quality part engineering.

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ballz739

I have my 3d printer still in a box... can't wait to set it up... what are ya'll using to design them?

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spinycheek

I have my 3d printer still in a box... can't wait to set it up... what are ya'll using to design them?

 

The programs I use are 123D Design, AutoDesk Fusion 360, Meshlab and Meshmixer depending on what I'm trying to make. They each have their advantages and disadvantages. However, I'd say that I prefer to use 123D Design whenever I can as it's easy to use and relatively intuitive (after some basic lessons). 123D also automatically fixes designs so they print correctly whereas the other ones can make invisible artifacts that really screw up the printing process, so you have to be mindful of every action you do. 123D Design is pretty good for playing around with shapes and trying new things. The other ones require you to know exactly what you want to do before you alter your model, especially Meshlab because that frustrating program doesn't have an undo button!

 

What printer did you get?

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spinycheek

What I would like is a twist lock frag plug into a base that could be glued to the rock work. That way you could glue the base to your rock work then twist lock a frag in place. Then you could move the frag later if you wanted too.

 

 

How would you feel about a magnet instead of a twist lock feature. I've been thinking about this and the potential issues I see with a lock is that 1) It would have to be sufficiently large to accommodate marine growth without affecting the mechanism. Small little features can become encrusted with algae/worms/sponges and then it might get gritty and not work very well. 2) A lock mechanism, especially a larger one, would difficult to hide or make look natural.

 

Assuming these glued on bases are exposed to the light, they will likely be quickly enveloped in coralline or other growth which will likely make the lock not work.

 

However, a strong magnet coupling can be totally encrusted and made to blend better with live rock. Obviously these magnets would be completely encased in plastic so there is absolutely no corrosion or contact with water. I really think a magnet system will have better performance across a range of conditions and abuse and would be much easier to camouflage.

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NewbReefer316

Following

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Reefwiser

Sounds like a way to go. Being able to move a frag to help find the perfect place for a coral to grow is important and also to keep it from being knocked off rock work.

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braaap

Sounds like a way to go. Being able to move a frag to help find the perfect place for a coral to grow is important and also to keep it from being knocked off rock work.

 

Super glue gel pops right off with a small twist.

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spinycheek

Been too busy to spend as much time as I want on modeling new frag mount designs, but I'm getting back to it. I was thinking more about natural looking plugs again in addition to the little adapter for rubble. I hated the first round I came up with, didn't look sleek or natural.

 

These are my latest ideas (screen shot, not printed yet), kind of remind me of rock climbing holds.

 

Screen%20Shot%202016-04-01%20at%203.12.0

 

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Screen%20Shot%202016-04-01%20at%203.12.5

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smiz

Those look really cool! Keep it up!

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spinycheek

Thanks!

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tsouth

Hope things are going strong and well with this project. So great to see this ingenuity and creativity come through

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spinycheek

Yes! Production molds are almost finished and the first two products should be on sale next month. If those are a commercial success, then more will be added to the line-up.913845_orig.png


6332388_orig.png

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spinycheek

For anyone interested, I am taking a handful of pre-orders on my website. My initial run will be small and will probably sell out quickly, so I wanted to offer up secured spots at a discounted rate for early adopters.

 

-Ben

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spinycheek

So, I while I wait for the printed natural plugs, I began trying my hand at agrocrete mounts.

 

I begin with an insert that goes in liquid concrete/agrocrete before it sets. Once the cement has hardened, you now have a natural looking agrocrete disc with threads in the bottom to attach any of the Coralok Posts like the Rock Anchor, Sand Anchor, etc.

 

Cement%20insert%20angle.png

 

Cement%20insert%20side.png

 

IMG_2775.jpg

 

 

Hard to see what's going on in the last picture, but that is an insert waiting for the agrocrete to harden around it.

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Benny314

So, I while I wait for the printed natural plugs, I began trying my hand at agrocrete mounts.

 

I begin with an insert that goes in liquid concrete/agrocrete before it sets. Once the cement has hardened, you now have a natural looking agrocrete disc with threads in the bottom to attach any of the Coralok Posts like the Rock Anchor, Sand Anchor, etc.

 

Cement%20insert%20angle.png

 

Cement%20insert%20side.png

 

IMG_2775.jpg

 

 

Hard to see what's going on in the last picture, but that is an insert waiting for the agrocrete to harden around it.

 

This is a great idea, wouldn't horizontal posts in a cross or something similar guarantee a better grip in the agrocrete than the threads would? Just a thought.

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spinycheek

 

This is a great idea, wouldn't horizontal posts in a cross or something similar guarantee a better grip in the agrocrete than the threads would? Just a thought.

 

 

Probably.

 

By not really knowing how agrocrete behaved, I was kind of flying blind. After this first round, I do think that a different shape would work better though. It didn't really screw in like I thought it would, so I just had to pack the agrocrete in around it. So a cross may very well be a better idea.

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Maui's Reef

Boxes!

 

IMG_2777.jpg

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Maui's Reef

I'm not super thrilled with the natural plugs (again). They're ok I guess, but onward to round 2...

 

IMG_2782.jpg

 

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rickztahone

Boxes!

 

IMG_2777.jpg

These are really cool

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