This is a model of hexagon coasters to be used in the household functionally. We have also made a holder to where you can store the coasters when they are not in use. The use of a coaster of course is to be a platform where you can set your drink without damaging other furniture. We hope this to be an example of how 3D printing can be used everyday in the household.
Made by L.D and A.F
Steps for designing the Hexagon coaster
We used the program blender to create both the coaster holder and the coasters. We first created a hexagon base. We then added more outer layers of larger hexagons with space between to create an ingrained hexagon pattern. For the base, we started with a hexagon once again and built up the sides on opposite ends to effectively contain the coasters.
The students that participated in this project are expected how to use 3D modeling and printing programs. The project also aims to enable the students to be creative and innovate.
I feel the high school grade levels to be appropriate for this project. High school students should be introduced to 3D printing technology as it may be an important skill for them to have in the future as 3D printing continues to become more common. This project is most appropriate for students that excel and are fascinated by science.
The first step of our project, like most projects, was to brainstorm. It is important to sit and contemplate different ideas and methods so you can make your project as best as it can be. We decided we wanted to make something that could be usable so we could be reminded of our project often. That is how we came to the idea of printing coasters shaped as hexagons. After designing the hexagon coasters, (as said in "How I designed this") we then went into the makerbot software to make the STL files we had created printable. We assorted the coasters and coaster holder adjacent to each other as seen in the hexagon_coaster.thing file to make it easier for the 3D printer to print them at once. The next was to export the model to a .makerbot file on a flash drive so the 3D printer would be able to print it. After loading the blue filament into the printer, we put the flash drive in the makerbot and selected our file to be printed. The print took 20 hours in total to finish.
We have designed and printed 4 functional hexagon coasters and 1 coaster holder to keep them in place when not in use. We successfully learned how to use the blender and makerbot programs, and we are now also able to operate the makerbot 3D printer. I feel like a good way to evaluate the projects is to view the models that students have printed and grade them on having shown that they have learned the skills required to 3D print.