Champaign-Urbana Community Fab Lab
Champaign-Urbana Community Fab Lab

3D Printing – Mohammed Faiz Patangia

This week’s assignment was about 3D-printing and scanning. It consists of two parts:

  1. One design using Tinkercad and Meshmixer.
  2. 3D model, which followed the fourth prompt. I created the part that I needed.

For the first part, I created an alien in Tinkercad, and did some modifications to it in Meshmixer.

Alien model in Tinkercad

Modified alien in Meshmixer











The first part was straightforward, because we just had to design a model and not print it.

For the second part, I decided to follow the fourth prompt, where we had to create something that we needed. I decided to create a phone holder for this assignment. The central idea was that, while eating it becomes very difficult to use phone, and it is very uncomfortable to look at the screen and operate the phone through touchscreen. I thought about creating a phone stand that would be helpful to me while eating. I would not need to place the phone on the desk or the table. The phone holder in the stand would be rotatable, this would help me in either browsing on social media or watching a movie. The end goal was to create a smart phone stand that would allow me to operate phone without touching the screen. I realized that it would be difficult to implement that because of the time constraint, so I decided to create just a phone holder.

First Prototype

For the first prototype, my goal was to have basic design of the phone holder. This was my first design in the process, and rest of the prototypes would be modifications to this prototype. With this design, I got a general idea about the look of the phone holder. 

For the second prototype, I decided to add a rotation functionality to the case. With the help of that function, user would be able to rotate the phone 360 degrees. 


Second Prototype


This was very important step, because at this step the design for the stand became a bit different. In the first prototype, the entire stand was one piece, but in the second prototype, the entire design consisted of phone stand and phone holder, which would be connected to the stand. 

Second Prototype – 2, with redesigned phone case.

For the third prototype, I worked on adding one more functionality to it. I also worked on increasing the size of the case and stand. For the first and second prototypes, it was not capable of holding the phone because of its size, so I tried to modify it so that it can hold actual phone. I though adding the functionality that would help user move the phone case up and down. 

3rd Prototype, with up/down functionality


Later, I realized that it would become much more complex and a bit difficult to print the third prototype. So, I decided to print the second prototype. Time was also a very important factor in printing. To print the second prototype, which is a smaller version of the actual phone holder, it took four and half hours. I realized that to print the actual, bigger stand, time and cost both would increase. 


4(1/2) Hours to print


Final Print


This assignment was very interesting, and I learned a lot of stuff from it. Building the first prototype was straightforward, but it took me few hours. There were a lot of factors that were very important to consider in the designing process. The alignment was very important, and I also had to consider the balance of the entire stand. My plan was to design the stand such that I don’t need to stick it to the table. Another challenge that I faced in the process was to design the phone case. It was very important to create the case so it fits the phone stand. It took me few hours just to get done with that step. I had make sure that the sphere in the phone stand fits the hollow circular region in the phone case. So, if I would change the size of the circle then, in order to make it fit the case, I would need to change the design of the back part of the case. Because of that problem, it was very difficult to increase the size of prototypes. If I plan to print the bigger version of the phone holder, then I will have to make it from scratch, everything with larger dimensions. The final print was okay. There was a hollow region in the phone case, to hold the phone. To print the case, the top part was facing downwards, and because of that the entire hollow region got filled with the supports, which became nearly impossible to remove. I faced another problem because of which I was not able to insert the hollow part of the case to the stand. The hollow region needed to be larger or adjustable.

Phone case

Phone Holder

Regardless of the outcome, this project allowed me to learn a lot of new stuff, and the entire process was very interesting and enjoyable.

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