How To Make 3d Printed Miniatures? 3D printing is a technology that can be used to produce three-dimensional objects from digital models. 3D printers are becoming increasingly affordable, and the quality of materials has improved. You can use 3d printers to produce miniatures for tabletop games such as D&D or Warhammer 40k. This blog post will give you some tips on how to create your own 3d printed miniatures at home with an inexpensive 3d printer!
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How to 3d print miniatures? (print warhammer miniatures, print tabletop miniatures)
Most people first met the term 3d printed miniatures on Kickstarter when Reaper Miniatures successfully funded a new range by printing out and painting some of their existing sculpts. However, that was merely the beginning; since then we’ve seen 3d printing being used to produce not just single models but also vast armies.
To give you an idea of what’s possible, here are some stunning examples.
First of all, there is the Kickstarter-funded Kingdom Death project which currently seems to offer a vast range in different scales and styles. Most impressive might be a few recent projects by user Gautier Giroud, who offers beautiful character models from his “Sharding = Bad” line. The clever thing is that Sharding uses a unique system to model characters. Instead of just producing a single miniature, it provides you with the tools to print out your own custom models…by coding them! This approach might seem extreme at first, but I have to say it really works.
Another very interesting tool to produce 3d printed miniatures comes from painters rather than sculptors: Patreon user “metal/master” recently released his latest project which allows you to create fantasy monsters by mixing various animal parts together. An interesting idea indeed and the results are actually quite convincing.
Of course, there are also other excellent projects that were successfully funded on Kickstarter, like Hordebaad or Hasslefree Miniatures.
However, I’d like to highlight the recent project by Dibujos Animados, which offers you some of the most detailed and unique fantasy miniatures I have ever seen. At first glance, their 3d printed models might remind you of mini-busts, but that is just because they are made with a special high-resolution resin printer. This means the details on these pieces are far superior to those from almost any other miniature line!
How To Make 3d Printed Miniatures? (cre: pinshape)
How can you get started?
In order to print your own 3d printed miniatures, there are multiple options available. On one end there is Shapeways, a service where you can upload your files and buy them as finished products for a reasonable price.
Although this option works fine if all you want are some single miniatures, it can get very expensive once you start ordering bigger quantities.
On the other end of the scale, there are services like Ponoko, which will produce 3d printed miniatures for a much more competitive price.
However, unless your project is extremely simple you might have to pay quite a bit up front before they even quote you prices for finished products.
For my own experiments, I chose another path: using my FFCAM program, which allows me to create previews of 3d models in an interactive way, I can easily change model settings and export them for use with different printing technologies, including Shapeways.
This means that every miniature I ever created in FFCAM is instantly available as a printable STL file …and that includes the models in this article (although naturally, I can’t quite sell you them).
Finally, if none of these options work for you, don’t forget about our Shapeways Affiliate Shop, which offers a huge range of miniatures from all sorts of different miniature producers!
3D miniature creator free software Tinkercad has been hacked by a 14-year-old – (Miniature creator design)
Tinkercad is currently only open to the public in its beta form and has not released an official statement on the hack.
It was notified of a potential exploit by Saleem Rashid five days ago but at the time chose not to act on it. When Rashid followed up and asked if he should inform the company’s users of the potential threat, Tinkercad’s response was “Don’t worry about it”.
The exploit is now fixed according to Saleem Rashid. If you’re a Tinkercad user we recommend changing your password as soon as possible.
Best 3d printer for miniatures? How to make 3d printed miniatures?
This article’s purpose is to determine which are the best 3d printers for miniature models, not only by looking for them online but also by comparing the results with expert opinions, creating a list of criteria, and scoring each printer on it.
We chose to look only at printers that are affordable, reliable, and have a minimum print volume of 5cm x 5cm x 5cm.
The best 3d printer for miniatures would print miniature figurines with high resolution, it’s able to produce small parts with high speed without compromising the quality of the details.
It should also be compatible with filaments from different manufacturers. In this article we compare the following printers:
The possible best 3d printer for miniatures according to our research is the Lulzbot Mini, scoring a total of 20/25 in our criteria evaluation.
The Lulzbot Mini has a minimum layer height of 0.05mm and a maximum print volume of 10cm x 7.8cm x 7.8cm. It’s also two times faster than the Makerbot Replicator Mini, which is a good advantage when printing complex parts.
Just make sure to choose a filament from your preferred brand because support for third-party filaments isn’t perfect yet and sticking with one manufacturer is easier in this case due to the smaller tolerances. Also, the Lulzbot Mini is compatible with Simplify3D and Cura which are great software to print miniatures.
The best budget 3d printer for miniatures we found was the Monoprice Maker Select v2, it’s very similar to the Anet A8 but has a better build quality and is tested more thoroughly.
The only downside of the Monoprice maker selection is that it doesn’t have a heated bed which can be annoying if you want to try different filaments from PLA to ABS without buying another printer. But this one also has a large community of support so finding help in case something goes wrong should not be a challenge.
The worst out of all printers in this list was the FlashForge Finder, it has poor accuracy and makes very loud noises while printing. The build quality is also not good enough for miniatures, the only advantage is that it’s very cheap.
Best resin for miniature wargaming
I’ve seen countless posts on various forums about the best resin to use for miniature wargames.
And I can see why people ask this question. There are many different resins out there and everyone has their pros and cons.
Therefore, it is hard to find a universal solution that fits all needs, because you always have to consider your own requirements.
If the miniatures need to be painted with acrylics, you should rather work with Polyurethane resin (PU), because this kind of resin does not dissolve in water-based paint.
However, Polyurethane resins cannot be used for producing transparent parts or elements and should never be glued onto a styrene base before painting!
Tamiya putty can be used for changing certain details of your models or if you want to replace a part completely.
For filling gaps, though, I would only recommend Milliput white/light gray two-part epoxy putty, because it sets rock hard in about 24 hours and is very easy to sand afterward. You can also apply primer onto it after roughly 15 minutes if you work with water-based acrylics!
Of course, there are other options as well:
For example, you could fill gaps either with superglue (CA) or resin glue. Both have their pros & cons which are discussed here ) at length. If the gap just needs to be filled up by approximately 2 mm, CA should do the job. But if you want to make the base of your model more stable or reinforce it with a fiberglass resin, I would recommend using resin glue.
This one hardens very slowly by itself and cures only with the help of an activator spray. If you’re not sure where to start, though, you should check out the article on my personal blog about working with epoxy putties!
How to print Hero Forge minis? (free printable miniatures)
First of all, thank you for your interest in printing Hero Forge minis!
I know that Kickstarter is a busy time for many people, so it’s great that there are people out there who still found some time to create this mini and write instructions.
If you want to print hero forge files, here are instructions on how to do just that! Please note again these are only instructions on how YOU can print them yourself at home or office – they aren’t commercial ones or anything like this.
First things first – you need a 3D model of your mini!
There are several ways to do this:
Nowadays it’s possible to buy them straight from some online stores like Shapeways or Heroforge (but they aren’t cheap).
If you don’t want to spend money on printing one, you can still make some yourself. Thanks to our friends over at www.3dhubs.com, we now have an easy way how!
You can buy a printable file that contains all the needed STL files for printing on almost any printer using almost any material (including white plastic like PLA and more expensive sculpting materials like Z-Brush and so on). This is the method we will use in this guide!
How To Make 3d Printed Miniatures? (cre: makezine)
Once you have your STL files (3d printed miniatures files), you need to:
Print them: Use your favorite slicer (tested with Cura 14.03 and Slic3r 1.2.9) to slice the STL into layers; then print it using your printer. You can also use other file formats like OBJ (recommended for printing on Makerbot), but here I’m only covering the best (and cheapest for now) option
– 3D Hubs STL files which you can directly print at Shapeways or any other 3D printing service;
Assemble them: There are two ways how this can be done
– This way allows you to paint your assembled minis without worrying about the under-layer. This is because the outer shell will be removed anyway, so you don’t have to think about it during the painting process.
There are two ways how this can be done: use a band saw or scroll saw (or even better – laser cutter!) to cut off the support material from below; clean up printing lines using X-acto knife or similar tools; glue all parts together with superglue in any way you want!
If you’re feeling adventurous, I recommend watching some videos on YouTube where people offer their tips and tricks for best results when cutting/sanding Shapeways models) try surfing through Shapeways galleries for your mini – can find many that were printed with no support material and were simply glued together;
Use a Shapeways print
– This way is much easier to clean up, but it requires more work. You can’t use any saws or even knives for cleaning: everything has to be done with files and sandpaper! Not as fun as using a band/scroll saw or laser cutter, but if you don’t have those then this is the only option available.
Please note that
Shapeways offers one type of material specifically designed for printing minis (and named “Dollhouse”), which is not too expensive ($10 per mini) but has some advantages over other materials on their site: this material doesn’t require any cleanup after printing, so there’s no need for filing or sanding on Shapeways (unless you want to, of course); this material is very stable and less likely to warp or break; it can be painted straight on the mini with acrylic paints;
If possible, print two copies of your mini – it will save you some headache when printing/slicing/assembling! After printing, remove support material from underneath using either method described above. Please note that the “print support material” option needs to be checked when slicing with Cura (other slicers may use different options).
If printing in white WSF material, you can leave the support material on top of your model – it’s very easy to cut off with a scalpel. If it’s Shapeways metal or something else, you’ll have to remove it all using a file and X-acto knife. Both ways work well – just choose which one is more fun for you!
After removing both types of supports, clean up print lines using files or abrasives like sandpaper. Note that this process will take some time depending on the size of your mini. After that, apply primer spray and then paint whatever color you want!
Hero Forge color printing test – general print settings
OK, so for this test I just printed out the color max settings.
The prints look awesome with no issues at all
As always with these 3D printing tests, you need to treat it like a beta product. Be patient and kind when testing the item since we are not finished testing and refining it yet.
You will need to clean up parts that become loose during the assembly process.
Also, remember that standard PLA is not food-safe! So don’t go taste your model after you print it because you will get plastic poisoning!
3D printing is a fairly new technology that has been growing in popularity over the last few years. With this article, we hope to give you an introduction to how it works and some ideas for what kinds of things might be good candidates for making miniatures with your own printer at home or work. If you’ve ever wanted to make cool little models like these but don’t know where to start, hopefully, this will help!
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