Shapeways


Bill Lane
 

Much has been said at times on Yahoo groups suggesting Shapeways as a viable
source of low production or 1 off model railroad items for a reasonable
price. Since starting my own part designing with Solidworks about 5 years
ago I have long been skeptical of what you would get for your purchase. I
have mostly thought (without seeing first hand) they are not there yet. The
best I had ever heard was from N Scalers saying their purchased items were
"acceptable".



That changed about an hour ago. A fellow S Scaler sent me an S Scale roof he
purchased. The material is rather fragile. It arrived to him broken - which
is why he graciously sent it to me just to see. In some ways it is a little
better than I expected but mostly it is **much worse** than I expected. The
material is a bit waxy but the layering is just awful! These is no chance
anyone would find it to be acceptable right out of the box. It was built
across the width so the roof was made vertically. It probably would have
been a worse finish if the roof was built as if you would see it on that
car. This just more than confirms my thoughts about Shapeways - you get what
you pay for and they are by far NOT there yet!



The material is too thin to mold it and try and use the casting as a master
which you would have to sand the cast part extensively. That is too much
like work! To get this roof made where I get my stuff printed would cost a
TON of money and possibly not that much better in finish but the material is
stronger so there are more possibilities - but nothing is easy for sure.



Thank You,
Bill Lane

Modeling the Mighty Pennsy & PRSL in 1957 in S Scale since 1988

See my finished models at:
<http://www.lanestrains.com/> http://www.lanestrains.com
Look at what has been made in PRR in S Scale!



See my layout progess at:

<http://www.lanestrains.com/My_Layout.htm>
http://www.lanestrains.com/My_Layout.htm

Custom Train Parts Design
<http://www.lanestrains.com/SolidWorks_Modeling.htm>
http://www.lanestrains.com/SolidWorks_Modeling.htm

PRR Builders Photos Bought, Sold & Traded
(Trading is MUCH preferred)
<http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRphotos.xls>
http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRphotos.xls

***Join the PRR T&HS***
The other members are not ALL like me!
<http://www.prrths.com/> http://www.prrths.com
<http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRTHS_Application.pdf>
http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRTHS_Application.pdf

Join the Pennsylvania Reading Seashore Lines Historical Society
It's FREE to join! <http://www.prslhs.com/> http://www.prslhs.com
Preserving The Memory Of The PRSL


rckwallaby
 

Interesting comments Bill.
And I guess... scary.

I've just ordered a complete HO scale flat car from Shapeways so I guess I'll know within a couple of weeks whether you're mostly right all the time, or just with respect to the item you've seen.

The model I've ordered is of a HO standard gauge flat car used by Railways of Victoria to tranship the 2'6" gauge steam locos of 'Puffing Billy' heritage for workshop overhaul. A note and link is listed below.

I chose to have these printed in a higher quality substrate called 'Frosted Ultra Detail'. This is the first item I have ever ordered from Shapeways. It cost me about $30 for the item and $20 for postage.

Several variations of this model have been offered; HO and O scale, a complete model and one that should be supplemented with brass, etc detail parts. - That's the one I'm getting.

Anyway we'll see what it all means. I'll let youze know.

Here's the notes and links below.

Cheers

Phil Morrow
Melbourne - the one in AUS.

VR 129 Q Transfer Wagon in HO and O Scales

On Jeev's Shop on Shapeways.

HO (1/87) version one detailed with buffers, brake wheels and brake line /
piping.

<http://www.shapeways.com/model/677262/pbr-q129-ho-1-87-scale.html>

Version two, less couplers (add brass ones), hand brake wheels (use etched
brass),
and brake lines (use brass wire)

<http://www.shapeways.com/model/678588/pbr-q129-v2-ho-1-87-scale.html>

And in O scale, similar versions:

V1 with details.

<http://www.shapeways.com/shops/shapeways.com/shops/Jeevi?s=36>

V2, modeller to add details.

http://www.shapeways.com/model/678674/pbr-q129-o-1-48-scale.html


The HO version has a piping detail plan to assist the modeller and a
downloadable URL for decals.

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Lane" <bill@...> wrote:

Much has been said at times on Yahoo groups suggesting Shapeways as a viable
source of low production or 1 off model railroad items for a reasonable
price. Since starting my own part designing with Solidworks about 5 years
ago I have long been skeptical of what you would get for your purchase. I
have mostly thought (without seeing first hand) they are not there yet. The
best I had ever heard was from N Scalers saying their purchased items were
"acceptable".



That changed about an hour ago. A fellow S Scaler sent me an S Scale roof he
purchased. The material is rather fragile. It arrived to him broken - which
is why he graciously sent it to me just to see. In some ways it is a little
better than I expected but mostly it is **much worse** than I expected. The
material is a bit waxy but the layering is just awful! These is no chance
anyone would find it to be acceptable right out of the box. It was built
across the width so the roof was made vertically. It probably would have
been a worse finish if the roof was built as if you would see it on that
car. This just more than confirms my thoughts about Shapeways - you get what
you pay for and they are by far NOT there yet!



The material is too thin to mold it and try and use the casting as a master
which you would have to sand the cast part extensively. That is too much
like work! To get this roof made where I get my stuff printed would cost a
TON of money and possibly not that much better in finish but the material is
stronger so there are more possibilities - but nothing is easy for sure.



Thank You,
Bill Lane

Modeling the Mighty Pennsy & PRSL in 1957 in S Scale since 1988

See my finished models at:
<http://www.lanestrains.com/> http://www.lanestrains.com
Look at what has been made in PRR in S Scale!



See my layout progess at:

<http://www.lanestrains.com/My_Layout.htm>
http://www.lanestrains.com/My_Layout.htm

Custom Train Parts Design
<http://www.lanestrains.com/SolidWorks_Modeling.htm>
http://www.lanestrains.com/SolidWorks_Modeling.htm

PRR Builders Photos Bought, Sold & Traded
(Trading is MUCH preferred)
<http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRphotos.xls>
http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRphotos.xls

***Join the PRR T&HS***
The other members are not ALL like me!
<http://www.prrths.com/> http://www.prrths.com
<http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRTHS_Application.pdf>
http://www.lanestrains.com/PRRTHS_Application.pdf

Join the Pennsylvania Reading Seashore Lines Historical Society
It's FREE to join! <http://www.prslhs.com/> http://www.prslhs.com
Preserving The Memory Of The PRSL







Frank Valoczy <destron@...>
 

For my part, I will say that pretty much everyone I know - myself included
- has been satisfied with their purchases from Shapeways, ranging from
trucks to complete cars. I've had a TT scale covered hopper and a pulpwood
rack from them, and my only complaint was the surface finish - a bit
grainy; that was, however, before they introduced the Frosted Ultra Detail
material which is smoother and stronger than their previous materials. The
covered hopper is fairly solid, but the rack is quite spiderweb-like and
one would expect quite fragile, but it's proven to be surprisingly strong.

The new Frosted material is considerably better in finish, and the
strength is satisfactory too. If one is careful with one's models (and
little more so than with any other model), I don't see there being any
issue that could arise.

Just thought I'd put a different opinion on the subject out there for
others to consider.

Frank Valoczy
New Westminster, BC


Richard Brennan <brennan8@...>
 

Bill

Unfortunately... you seem to have based your assessment on one sample of an unidentified Shapeways build. Each of the many available materials has different characteristics, and may be more or less suitable for a given part.

Questions:
- Which Shapeways material was used?
- What type of surfaces are on the part?
- How large/small was the object?
- Quote: "material is too thin to mold it"... This sounds like a design issue?

I'm agreeing with you that Shapeways is no panacea for development of production model parts, but with modest cost and quick turn-around it is often suitable for one-offs and pilot models. YMMV

--------------------
Richard Brennan - San Leandro CA
--------------------

At 10:26 AM 9/6/2012, you wrote:
Much has been said at times on Yahoo groups suggesting Shapeways as a viable
source of low production or 1 off model railroad items for a reasonable
price. Since starting my own part designing with Solidworks about 5 years
ago I have long been skeptical of what you would get for your purchase. I
have mostly thought (without seeing first hand) they are not there yet. The
best I had ever heard was from N Scalers saying their purchased items were
"acceptable".

That changed about an hour ago. A fellow S Scaler sent me an S Scale roof he
purchased. The material is rather fragile. It arrived to him broken - which
is why he graciously sent it to me just to see. In some ways it is a little
better than I expected but mostly it is **much worse** than I expected. The
material is a bit waxy but the layering is just awful! These is no chance
anyone would find it to be acceptable right out of the box. It was built
across the width so the roof was made vertically. It probably would have
been a worse finish if the roof was built as if you would see it on that
car. This just more than confirms my thoughts about Shapeways - you get what
you pay for and they are by far NOT there yet!

The material is too thin to mold it and try and use the casting as a master
which you would have to sand the cast part extensively. That is too much
like work! To get this roof made where I get my stuff printed would cost a
TON of money and possibly not that much better in finish but the material is
stronger so there are more possibilities - but nothing is easy for sure.


Thank You,
Bill Lane


nvrr49 <nvrr49@...>
 

I send shapeways something to print every month, and although I have had issues, most are disign issues. The FUD material is about all I use. You can see ia few is the scenic detail parts and and HOn30 engine shell and some one truck cars in my photo folder, nvrr49.

Kent Hurley
KC, MO

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Frank Valoczy" <destron@...> wrote:


For my part, I will say that pretty much everyone I know - myself included
- has been satisfied with their purchases from Shapeways, ranging from
trucks to complete cars. I've had a TT scale covered hopper and a pulpwood
rack from them, and my only complaint was the surface finish - a bit
grainy; that was, however, before they introduced the Frosted Ultra Detail
material which is smoother and stronger than their previous materials. The
covered hopper is fairly solid, but the rack is quite spiderweb-like and
one would expect quite fragile, but it's proven to be surprisingly strong.

The new Frosted material is considerably better in finish, and the
strength is satisfactory too. If one is careful with one's models (and
little more so than with any other model), I don't see there being any
issue that could arise.

Just thought I'd put a different opinion on the subject out there for
others to consider.

Frank Valoczy
New Westminster, BC


Tom Madden
 

Kent Hurley wrote:

I send shapeways something to print every month, and although I have had issues, most are disign issues. The FUD material is about all I use. You can see ia few is the scenic detail parts and and HOn30 engine shell and some one truck cars in my photo folder, nvrr49.
I've submitted a part to Shapeways to be run in the Frosted Ultra Detail (FUD) material Kent mentions. It looks to be 3D Systems' multi jet process, which is similar to the PolyJet process I have access to. The part is a heavyweight Pullman bolster assembly, the design is visible here:

http://www.shapeways.com/model/694311/bolster2.html?key=a29def8060cf357026fd64e7f1847f40

The part is very complex but doesn't have a lot of surface detail. The price is very competitive - I ordered two at $14.04 each plus $6.50 for shipping etc. We'll see how it goes.

Tom Madden


John Degnan <Scaler164@...>
 

The conclusion to all of this (and a recent, similar discussion being held on one of the S scale groups) seems to be just as I suspected from the start - that the resulting quality of the part(s) being received from Shapeways depends on (1) the material chosen to have the part(s) printed in and (2) the quality of the design based on the designer's experience.

I can't say for sure, but I would almost be willing to wager a bet that the part reviewed by Bill Lane (who started this post) was not printed with the Frosted Ultra Detail material, and therefore is not a fair or just review of what Shapeways can do... only what they did in this one situation. But even if it was printed in the FUD material, I still cannot justify writing off a company based on a single person's single experience, expecially when there are so very many others who seem to have gotten great results from them.


John Degnan
Scaler164@comcast.net
Scaler187@comcast.net

----- Original Message -----
From: pullmanboss
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Sunday, September 09, 2012 01:38 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Shapeways


Kent Hurley wrote:
>
> I send shapeways something to print every month, and although I have had issues, most are disign issues. The FUD material is about all I use. You can see ia few is the scenic detail parts and and HOn30 engine shell and some one truck cars in my photo folder, nvrr49.

I've submitted a part to Shapeways to be run in the Frosted Ultra Detail (FUD) material Kent mentions. It looks to be 3D Systems' multi jet process, which is similar to the PolyJet process I have access to. The part is a heavyweight Pullman bolster assembly, the design is visible here:

http://www.shapeways.com/model/694311/bolster2.html?key=a29def8060cf357026fd64e7f1847f40

The part is very complex but doesn't have a lot of surface detail. The price is very competitive - I ordered two at $14.04 each plus $6.50 for shipping etc. We'll see how it goes.

Tom Madden


Robert kirkham
 

Trouble is, while the Frosted Ultra Detail is a nice material and can produce good parts, if it is not laid down into a part properly it can be very bad (as can their courser materials). I printed a bunch of 7/8 Murphy ends using that material and received some that were fine and usable and others that were very grainy - not from the normal process of laying in the material, but from something different I attribute to the machines Shapeways uses. On a lathe, you'd bet that surface distortion like I received was caused by chatter. No idea what is doing it with the Shapeways process. Because I received a mixture of acceptable and unacceptable parts on multiple occasions, I started to go elsewhere. The price is three times as high, but so far the quality is obviously better.

From that point of view, I have little trouble accepting criticism of Shapeways as a vendor that produces uneven quality. But a lot depends on what sort of part you need. And how many you want to discard to get it. I'm waiting for the day I can do HO people - but they are hard to draw. My suspicion is a wrinkle here and a wrinkle there won't be a deal breaker like it is on a boxcar end.

Rob Kirkham


--------------------------------------------------
From: "John Degnan" <Scaler164@comcast.net>
Sent: Sunday, September 09, 2012 6:20 AM
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Shapeways

The conclusion to all of this (and a recent, similar discussion being held on one of the S scale groups) seems to be just as I suspected from the start - that the resulting quality of the part(s) being received from Shapeways depends on (1) the material chosen to have the part(s) printed in and (2) the quality of the design based on the designer's experience.

I can't say for sure, but I would almost be willing to wager a bet that the part reviewed by Bill Lane (who started this post) was not printed with the Frosted Ultra Detail material, and therefore is not a fair or just review of what Shapeways can do... only what they did in this one situation. But even if it was printed in the FUD material, I still cannot justify writing off a company based on a single person's single experience, expecially when there are so very many others who seem to have gotten great results from them.


John Degnan
Scaler164@comcast.net
Scaler187@comcast.net


----- Original Message -----
From: pullmanboss
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Sunday, September 09, 2012 01:38 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Shapeways


Kent Hurley wrote:
>
> I send shapeways something to print every month, and although I have
had issues, most are disign issues. The FUD material is about all I use. You can see ia few is the scenic detail parts and and HOn30 engine shell and some one truck cars in my photo folder, nvrr49.

I've submitted a part to Shapeways to be run in the Frosted Ultra Detail (FUD) material Kent mentions. It looks to be 3D Systems' multi jet process, which is similar to the PolyJet process I have access to. The part is a heavyweight Pullman bolster assembly, the design is visible here:

http://www.shapeways.com/model/694311/bolster2.html?key=a29def8060cf357026fd64e7f1847f40

The part is very complex but doesn't have a lot of surface detail. The price is very competitive - I ordered two at $14.04 each plus $6.50 for shipping etc. We'll see how it goes.

Tom Madden




------------------------------------

Yahoo! Groups Links