Oh, God….this is the toughest part of a product: Do you DESIGN ground-up, or to you USE another (existing) design to get the end result you’re after.
Gads, this is tough. So let’s go through it:
- If you don’t like software and you’re not reselling then the use of an existing design is dandy. Good etiquette to tip the designer who came up with your problem-solving print, however. Don’t be cheap. Designers add value!
- IF you may resell, then consider your own design. OR, work out a use agreement with the original designer.
- IF you definitely will resell, then try for a use-agreement, or design your own.
Where to Look for Designs
.STL Files, first.
Got your clicker ready?
- Yeggi (Search galore! By category – say “ham radio” etc.)
- Thingiverse (Ibid or ditto)
- GrabCAD (Search the library)
- 3D Warehouse (Heavy into SketchUp files)
- My Mini Factory
What About CNC Files?
So here’s what you’re up against: 3D Printing files may OR may not work with your CNC router.
CNC machines are a subtractive process. That is, they cut away material not wanted (*or used) in the design. 3D Printing (filament or resin) is an additive progress.
CNC machines generally have a lot more axes in play, too. So when you go “Design Fishing” be sure and understand the machine requirements you have. A high-end industrial product for a five-axis CNC may not run on a 4-axis machine, you following?
OK, with those warnings (and don’t call us if you push bits through the bottom of your build plate, OK?) here’s are a few starting points:
So these are a few to getr you going. Remember, map out the processing (work-flow) for every file type you look at.
For example, do you know what the workflow is your your machine – your software to process an .STL file into a 3D prionter?
OK, another work-flow map to build in your head: How to get a .DXF file converted into something that will run on your grbl router?
Building your work-flow is just as important in “home>Mak,ing” and it is for people involved in “home>Music” who face a digital audio workstation and wonder how to get a song from point A to speakers.
In ourl context, this is “How to get a design from point A to holding it and having a good print in the end?”