Introduction: Easy 3D Printed Custom Key Chain!!
I thought it would be cool to have a key chain with my initials on it so I designed one using Auto desk Inventor. This is a quick and easy project that you can design in under 30 minutes. The print for mine took around one hour but for a bigger part it will take longer.
Step 1: Creating Your Key Chain
Start by creating a 2D sketch. I chose the xy plane, but you can always rotate it later. Then create a rectangle. Using the dimension feature make it 1 inch by .5 inches. Then you can either click finish sketch or go to 3D model. Once you are in 3D model click the extrude button on the command bar, then select the rectangle. I chose to extrude mine half an inch.
Step 2: Customizing It!
First start by creating a second 2D sketch on the top of your prism. Then select the text feature and type your initials (or whatever you want it to say!). To change the size of the text, highlight the text and select the size box, then select a larger size. If this is still too small then select the stretch and increase the percentage. To change the font highlight the text and then select a font out of the font box. Make sure to hit OK and not cancel or X because your work will not save. After that adjust your letters so that they are on your key chain. I added some circles for some pizzazz. If you do add any thing extra make sure not to put it too close to the top or that it is hanging off the top, this will interfere with putting the loop on later.
Step 3: Making the Letters in the Key Chain
Start by using the extrude feature and rater than selecting extrude, select cut and then for the profile select the letters and any other features you may have made. You can either cut the material by putting in .5 in the length box or by using the to button and selecting the back side of the rectangle. If the cut is moving the wrong way select one of the buttons withe the arrow going through the rectangle to switch the direction.
Step 4: Adding the Loop
To add the loop create a new sketch on the top of your key chain. Make a small circle with a diameter of .07. The circle should be slightly off the center but you can put it anywhere on the top of the key chain. While you are in sketch put a line near your circle but not touching. This line will be your axis and determine how tall your loop is. Once you create this line (showed in the first picture) select the revolve feature out of the 3D model category. Select "to next" and then your circle for the profile. Click on the axis selector than select the line you just made. Your loop should be on ready to go!
Step 5: Printing Your Key Chain
For this part save your key chain and then click on export. Click CAD format then a save area will come up. Above where you type the name will be a scroll bar select STL format and save. I used "Makerbot" software, so I will explain how to do it using makerbot. First select add file and select the file you want to add. It may come be added in in mm so click the re-size to inches. If this is not available then use the scale feature to make your key chain as large or small as you want it. Once it is the correct size click export and export it to your SD card drive. Make sure on the export tab supports and drafts are on. Place it in your 3D printer and start printing!!
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