This project was a demonstration of the potential of 3D printers to create high-fidelity, finished products. We wanted to create something that could only be created by means of additive manufacturing. The ultimate goal was to create a functional, consumer-ready piece that took advantage of the strengths of 3D printing. This project was also an exploration in the role of digital design tools in the 3D printing world, and how we could combine digital tools in new ways to create unique objects.
Here is a quick video that captures our motivations for doing this project:
The project was recently featured by Wired.com
Check out the full article:
Maurice Conti - Concept and Design
Evan Atherton - Design and Engineering
Arthur Harsuvanakit - Technical Consultant
In this Instructable, I will try to share the process of making these one-of-a-kind speakers.
*Note: for this project, we used an off-the-shelf speaker driver. The exact speaker can be found here:
Step 1: Creating the Model
These speakers are composed of two components that are 3D printed simultaneously:
1. Flexible rubber base (Objet TangoBlackPlus)
2. Clear crystal-like protrusions (Objet VeroClear)
The clear crystals are held in place by the black rubber base, which gives the lights that cool pixelated effect.
To create the crystal form, I used Autodesk 3ds Max Design 2013, and its powerful Topology toolbox. The steps in 3ds Max are as follows:
1. Create a polygonal sphere from the standard primitives box. Use a sufficient number of segments, but not too many
2. Convert the sphere to an editable polygon with the Edit Poly modifier
3. Ensure that you have edges selected in the Edit Poly Mode box on the right hand side
4. In the Polygon Modeling drop-down of the Graphite Modeling Tools, select "Generate Topology"
5. In the pop-out menu, select "Edge Direction" (or whicheverpattern you happen to like!)
6. In the Edit Poly Mode box, select polygons. Right click in the workspace and select the box next to "Extrude"
7. In the pop-out menu, change the extrude mode to "By Polygon"
8. Extrude all of the faces a sufficient distance.
9. Export your creation as a .STL (StereoLitho) file