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The Illumination of Pi

by marciot Jun 29, 2015
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Thing Apps Enabled

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What is the largest this has been printed at?

I'm thinking of trying it as a lampshade for an LED ceiling light...

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This is just too cool. What affects how blurry the numbers get the further away from the floor/wall the lamp is? Or more importantly, what can I do to print one that would look good from further away? Thicker walls, more infill, better printer?


The size of the LED plays a part. The smaller it is, the sharper the shadow it will cast. You can probably help make it sharper with thicker walls.

Also, how reflective the material is. You want all the light coming from a point, the less bouncing around inside the lamp the better. So a black, matte filament would be better than a light color, glossy one.

My school has one of those super accurate liquid curing printers (I forget exactly what it's called) so I should get a very accurate rendition of Pi.

Suggestions on slic3r settings? I keep getting an error or it won't fill in the bottom layer.

I've never used slic3r. I used Cura when I printed mine.

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Hello marciot

I'd like to let you know about CraftML, a new tool for making parametric models like this light sculpture you designed.

Inspired by your design, I used CraftML to create a similar stick:
(Please use Chrome for the best experience)

As you can see, my model is still an incomplete replication of yours; it has much fewer digits and follows a linear spiral.

3ders has an article about CraftML.


Hope you will find CraftML useful for making more amazing light sculptures!

Good work! There is also another tool out there called OpenJSCAD which is similar to the tool I used (OpenSCAD).

This is an amazing project! I should show it to my pie (oops, pi) loving friends! They will be amazed!

I love pie!
I also love pi!

Thank you, Slifer! Sure, share the pi(e), there's more than enough to go around!

Wow, that is an amazing idea and beautiful execution!

Thank you, Nathan!

This is a brilliant piece of Open-Scad coding - thank you for sharing it.
It helped me to learn a lot more about Open-Scad capabilities.
I have built the base unit with a DaVinci XYZ 1.0A and it works !

Thank you, Oldsirhippy! I learned a lot from looking at other people's code and I'm glad to pay it forward :) Please do post a picture of your make when you are ready to do so! :)