Introduction: Create Your Name From Letters

Picture of Create Your Name From Letters

The following information is a single lesson in a larger Tinkercad project. Check out this and more projects on Tinkercad.

Project Overview:

In this projects students will learn how they can make a keychain by connecting letters together so they can be 3D printed.

While this could be done with any word, in this example we will use my last name.

In the make it your own lesson I provide additional ideas and challenges to get the students to personalize the project to their style.

Let's get started!

Step 1: Select Your Letters

Picture of Select Your Letters

In this step we will gather all the letter required to spell your name by placing them on the work plane.

Instructions

  1. Expand the Letters panel on the right side of the screen.
  2. Drag each letter of your name onto the workplane. Remember: I used the letters of my last name, you should use the letters from your name or any other word you would like to turn into a keychain.
  3. Continue to the next step.

Step 2: Align Your Letters

Picture of Align Your Letters

Make sure all your letters are aligned to the bottom.

Instructions

  1. Select all the letters on the workplane.
  2. Select Align from the Adjust menu on the toolbar.
  3. Align the letters so the bottom of each letter is in line with the others.
  4. Continue to the next step.

Step 3: Make All the Letters Overlap

Picture of Make All the Letters Overlap

In order to 3D print the keychain all at he letters must overlap a little. If the letters were not touching they would come off the 3D printer as individual letters.

Let's connect the letters now.

Instructions

  1. Rotate your view so you are looking down on your name.
  2. Select the second letter in your name and use the arrow keys on the keyboard to nudge in closer to the first. Note: Each letter should should the letter before it by about 1mm, but this doesn't need to be exact.
  3. Repeat the previous step for each of the remaining letters in your name. When each of the letters is overlapping the letter before it in your name, you are almost finished.
  4. Not all the letters are the same width and you will probably find that some letters overlap more than others. If you want to fine tune how much your letters overlap you can set the grid snap to 0.25 and use the arrows on your keyboard to adjust the amount each letters overlaps it's nearest neighbor.
  5. Continue to the next step.

Step 4: Adjust the Height of Letters

Picture of Adjust the Height of Letters

If you select all your letters and group them you will see that they all become a single object. Since each of the letters is the same height the grouped shape will seem hard to read.

We can fix this by changing the height of every other letter.

Instructions

  1. Select all your letters and group them into a single object.
  2. Is your name a little hard to read like mine was? Let's fix this.
  3. Double click on your name to edit the group. Note: You will know you are editing the group if you see a red rectangle under your letters. The letters should also return to their original colors while editing the group.
  4. Select the second letter in your name and use the white dot (handle) on the top to make the letter shorter than letter next to it.
  5. Repeat the previous step with ever other letter in your name. By doing this we will be able to see each of the letters in the group better when we finish editing the group.
  6. Click any where on the workplane outside of the red group edit rectangle to finish editing the group. You should see your name change back to the group color and it should be much easier to see each letter.
  7. Continue to the next step.

Step 5: Add a Keyring Loop

Picture of Add a Keyring Loop

Before we finish up we need to create a way to attach the keychain to a key ring. By adding a key ring you will be able to attached it to your keys or to a zipper on your backpack.

Instructions

  1. Place a cylinder on the workplane and size it to 4mm square and 3mm tall.
  2. Place a second cylinder on the workplane and size it to 2mm square and 5mm tall.
  3. Make the second cylinder a hole.
  4. Select both cylinders and align the cylinders vertically so they have the same center.
  5. Group the cylinders into a single object.
  6. Select the key ring and use the arrow keys on your keyboard to nudge the ring into the first letter of your name.
  7. To complete the key chain group your name and the ring together into a single object.
  8. Congratulations you have just completed your name key ring. Great job!

In the next lesson you will learn to customize your keychain!

Next Lesson:Make it Your Own

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