3D Design and Software
There are many 3D design packages out there. Some of them are free and some have to be paid for. In this section we will be taking a look at what's available and what each package offers.
Free CAD and 3D Modelling Programs
Here is my attempt at creating a Spectrum laptop with an 8" LCD based around the ZX Spectrum Next PCB.
With a bit of hacking and 3D printing we add a ZX Spectrum Next board into a modified Spectrum +3 computer case.
Here we have another retro computer modification. This time I want to be able to mount a 2nd Floppy Disk drive an Acorn A5000. Here is a picture of my A5000 for those not familiar with Acorn computers.
Following on from the relatively simple Pokécoin model I did last time, here I will try to make a decent 3D printable model of a Pokémon Go gym.
Here I created a Pokécoin from the massively successfully game Pokémon Go for you to print on a 3D printer.
I finally got my hands on a Raspberry Pi 3 earlier this week and straight away went in search of a cool RISC OS / Acorn themed case.
Continuing on from my previous A3010 Acorn Archimedes article I've now got the machine working and wanted to design and 3D print a custom back panel for my IDE Compact Flash drives.
Today I've been restoring my old Acorn Archimedes A3010 computer which I used back in about 1993. Back then it was state of the art compared to the 386 PCs of the day and it was supposedly great for education (Acorn machines were mainly used in schools here in the UK in the '80s and '90s).
This is by far the largest 3D printed project I've attempted to date. One of the most played videogames of my youth, Fantasy World Dizzy gets a 3D printed makeover.
As I'm super familiar with all things C5, here is a 3D printable C5 keyring! Although you can print this out with regular home 3D printers which print with heated plastic extruders...
It's been a while since my last retro video game inspired print so, with a large amount of inspriation from Clammylizard, here we make a 3D printed trophy using an original SNES Bomberman sprite
Here we attempt to print the Idol from Radiers of the Lost Ark using manual supports and compare it to using automatic supports on a Makerbot Replicator 2 3D printer.
Sinclair C5 Keyswitch Battery Adapter made with the 3D printer. Use larger batteries without needing a wiring kit.
Creating a 3D Printable Model from a 2D Bitmap Sprite - ZX Spectrum Rebelstar
Here we re-use some previously designed 3D models for the retrogame Stop the Express and create a Money Box out of a train carriage.
Elite on the Commodore Amiga gets some 3D printed treatment. We re-create part of the loading screen into a 3D model.
8-bit retro game "Stop the Express" is given the 3D printing treatment. Here we produce a framed 3D picture of a scene from the game.
Another retro project that has been occupying my thoughts for some time now. I have a pair of Sinclair C5 electric vehicles (released in 1985) sat in the garage.
Here we have a bit of fun with the old Manic Miner boot graphic many retro gamers will be familiar with. It's time to make another 3D printed tropy.
Here we create a fun looking Plantpot with a Cloud supsended above which can be filled with water to "Rain" on your plant.
Horace Goes Skiing, the ZX Spectrum game from 1982 gets turned into a 3D trophey.
Here we recreate some of the sprites from the classic ZX Spectrum game "Chaos: Battle of the Wizards" into printed objects with magets embedded on the back.
In this post I will be creating a 3D printable model from a 2D image, using a combination of our automated tool and also manually recreating parts in CAD.
Here we recreate the iconic Flux Capicitor from the Back to the Future films. All the required STL files can be downloaded. It is especially designed for those wanting to add an Arduino micro controller for animating the lights.
Here we use the power of 3D Printing to create a set of plastic clips to fix an old set of direction indicators for the Sinclair C5.
A little look at three.js, the WebGL 3D graphics library that makes creating realtime 3D graphics on the web a doddle.
3D Printing software often contain a lot of settings to allow you to fine-tune how the printer will create printed objects. One of these important settings is the Layer Height setting.
Before I owned a 3D printer I had never used a CAD program before, let alone a 3D one. After purchasing my first printer I needed to learn 3D CAD and I wanted to do it with a free App if possible.
Blender is well known for its 3D modelling capabilities and is often used for creating 3D models for games, animations etc.
Okay, so I haven't printed too many large objects on the 3D Printer. The largest so far has been the Sinclair C5 model which, although not too big takes about 4 hours when printed on the medium quality setting on the Makerbot Replicator 2.
Here is the first model of a Sinclair C5 created with a Makerbot 3D printer. It is roughly 1/10 in scale to a real C5 and is composed of 17 different parts created on the printer and then clipped or glued together to create the final model.
Here is a familiar character from the 1980's ZX Spectrum game Manic Miner. Recreated as a 3D CAD Model and printed on a Makerbot 3D printer.
Here is the original screenshot of the ZX Spectrum game Manic Miner recreated in a 3D modelling package and made into a 3D picture.
This useful bracket is designed to allow you to mount a 120mm cooling fan on the end of the Motor in a Sinclair C5.
If you have tried a package for 3D design. Whether it be CAD or 3D Modelling and would like to include it here then please get in touch.