3D Printing Applied to Fishing Part 1

Recently I was fortunate to gain access to a 3D printer. At first I couldn't get my head around the concept. It was just too foreign an idea for me to comprehend. Once you see the process for the first time, the penny drops and the possibilities immediately become apparent.

I initially made some simple parts for my bicycle, to replace some washers I lost on the road one day. Then some parts for my fishing kayak. Naturally I started to get ideas for solutions to some fishing problems I had been trying to solve.

Firstly, let's take a look at what it takes to print in 3D. I have a good technical background, and a better than average knowledge of IT generally. I also work with people who are interested in these types of technologies, it's always good to have advice. The web can be a substitute for these things to some extent, the amount of information in the public domain is staggering.

You can't print anything until you make a model. Fortunately there are some excellent program's freely available on the internet for model design. I have tried 3 different apps with various levels of success, SketchUp, Blender and Creo Elements Direct. I have settled on Creo, its the one that works best for me, and suits the models I've made so far. These applications can be downloaded and installed and learnt from tutorials on YouTube etc.

Once you have designed your model you save it as what is known as an STL file. This is like a common language for describing a model and most 3D printers come with software that can interpret an STL file and make it into a file that the printer can print.

Here is a link to a model I created and uploaded to Thingiverse.

If you follow the link you will see the model I created in Creo and saved as an STL. I then uploaded this to the public domain so that others could use it or use the idea. The blue model is the representation of the model and there are pictures of an actual model and the applications.

Hopefully this model gives an idea of the possibilities, cork arbours for pillared centrepin reels have been manufactured, but they are hard to fit and remove and are prone to rot when wet. This arbour was a great solution,and has turned my almost great Speedia reel into the perfect estuary luderick reel.

Thingiverse is a public site for sharing models, you can download already created models for free and print them if you have access to a printer.

More on this to come.


9/6/2014 Lower Harbour Holiday Luderick
19/4/2014 Yamba T-Piece Blackfish


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Friday, 21 July 2017