Summer is a time for relaxation, fun with friends, and of course, loads of 3D printing. Warm weather provides an ideal environment for 3D printing, keeping your rooms warm and the quality of your prints high. But what exactly can you print to take advantage of this season?
There are tons of 3D printable models available online for free. All you have to do is download the files, prep them in your slicer, and you’re ready to start printing items that will make it easier to get through the hotter months. Let’s take a look at some of the best 3D printing projects to try this summer.
1. Flower pots
Whether you are a green gardening lover or you just want to upgrade your outdoor space, plant pots are a great choice. 3D printers are perfect for making flower pots. Their thin walls and floors allow you to produce large pots without waiting days for your prints to finish.
This cat plant pot on Thingiverse is a great example of that. The model can be enlarged or reduced according to your wishes and its simple shape makes it incredibly easy to print. While this will print fine with PLA, PETG would be a better choice if you want to leave your pot outside. PETG is far more chemical and water resistant than PLA.
You don’t need to print this model with supports or a raft and you can stick with your regular PLA / PETG profile. Print with a Layer height of 0.3 mm and a Filling density of 30% makes a piece that lasts about four hours.
2. Outdoor games
3D printing is a time-consuming hobby, but most of the time is spent waiting. What better way to spend that time than enjoying a few outdoor games? This is where our next idea comes in; a 3D printed frisbee.
Like your flower pot, a frisbee will be incredibly easy to print. This simple frisbee from Thingiverse can be printed with no supports or raft using your normal settings. We had to rotate the frisbee model -90 degrees on the X axis and reduce overall scale to 70% suitable for our printer.
Print at low Resolution of 0.3 mm, our slicer estimates that this print will take a little over six hours. PLA is fine for this print but will likely last longer if you use a stronger material like PETG or ABS.
3. Water bottle rockets
The summer months offer many opportunities. The opportunity to spend time outside and have fun doing science is part of it. This next idea involves building your own water bottle rocket with a complex remote start system to use your 3D printer.
This Water Rocket Launch System project has all of the files you’ll need, including a stand-in-bottle in case you don’t have one lying around. Since these parts need to be precise, cut this with a Layer height of 0.18 mm. This results in a printing time of just over five hours with the heavy-duty version of the model and your own plastic bottle.
You will also need a bike pump, string, and some o-rings for this project. Apart from that, you don’t need anything else to send bottles into the cosmos. Because the bottle is under high pressure, adult supervision is recommended when using this rocket.
4. 3D printed sundials
Sundials have been used to keep track of time for thousands of years. This next project gives you the ability to show the time using the sun, just with a shadow showing numbers like a digital clock.
This “digital sundial” offers a unique and interesting way to tell the time, all in a package that is really easy to print. You have to choose the right gnomon for your hemisphere, but there are only three other parts to print. This print doesn’t require any supports or rafts.
With a Layer height of 0.3 mm, our slicer estimates this project will take about 14 hours to print. You will also need an empty jar and some nuts, bolts, and washers to put this project together. All in all, this is an exciting way to take advantage of the summer sun in your garden.
5. Folding compartments
Air movement can be a powerful tool when looking to cool off on a hot day. People have known this for a long time and traditional folding fans have long been popular in regions like Asia. But can you print something like this for yourself?
You certainly can.
This project will be more challenging than some as it is meant to be printed as a single piece. It is recommended that you use a raft however, while printing this design, you don’t have to worry about supports to get a clean print. With a Layer height of 0.18 mm, this 3D printed Chinese oriental folding fan can be printed in just 17 hours.
This is a great project for those interested in working with moving print-in-place parts. Not only do you need to choose the right settings to make your print look good, but you also need to make sure that everything can move properly when it’s finished. A small stand for your fan can also be printed with when it is not in use.
6. Water bottle clips
This last project is not as complicated as the others. Everyone knows that carrying water is especially important in the summer, and this handy project is making it easier than ever to have your bottle with you. It’s a simple water bottle clip.
Designed for standard beverage bottles, you can adjust the size of this piece to match the size of the bottle you are drinking from. Aside from that, however, printing will be incredibly easy. We cut this 3D model with a Layer height of 0.3 mm, and this gave us an estimated print time of only 15 minutes. You can use any material for this project.
Use your 3D printer this summer
Finding ways to cool off, have fun, and keep yourself hydrated in the summer is very important. Most people won’t consider their 3D printer to be the solution to these areas, but there are tons of great models online that offer fun projects to try out at home. You just need to make sure you have something to cool off while printing in the summer heat.
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About the author
Samuel L. Garbett
(3 articles published)
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