3D-printable Tank

Introduction: 3D-printable Tank

About: I'm a teenage boy how has interest in 3D-printing.

This porject started two months ago when i had an idea to design a tank(E100 from World of Tanks) and since then i have used Tinkercad very much. For two years i have practised and used Tinkercad in 3D-designing and printing many other creations. In the beginning of my design i took a paper and started modelling the tank and how it will be created in order to make it look like in the game so this is my vision of it. Only imagination is the limit!


Disassembled tank

Tank tracks

Final version of my tank

Paper, pen, laptop or pc for designing and (optional) 3D-printer and patience.

Step 1: Designing

My projects first step is to design the tank on paper for example. You can look models from the net or where you can find them or just make all by you're imagination. Ruler helps a lot when thinking about the size of the tank. When you have a raw design of your tank you can then move on to your 3D-designing software (i use Tinkercad) and start bringing your drawings from paper to 3D. First design don't have to look perfect at first and you can make many tries until you like the result. Then you can move on to the next step.

Step 2: Building the Parts

After the desinging is over you need to start making the parts. It doesn't matter from which part you start from. Let's say you start from tracks. You can make tracks by yourself or use a premade ones. Remember to leave a little cap between moving parts so the print won't get stuck. Keep ideal size in mind when designing and don't make it too big. From the first parts to next step.

Step 3: Creating the Shape

After you have made the first few parts you can continue building. Adding more gears for support or for better look. Now i have added two motors on the baseplate so i know how long and wide it will need to be. You don't have to include motors unless you wan't to and i will say it'll be challenging. Small details can be added later in the design so you can focus on the mainbody. Continue to next step.

Step 4: Adding the Frame

Now i have added some endplates. If you add motors or other stuff in your tank remember to leave space for them. Frame can be designed as you want. I used curved shapegenerator and made my tank a front plate. But i noticed that it will crash the software (Tinkercad) if group too many objects together. To solve that i changed my idea in creating a curved frontparts with shapegenerator and switched it to round objects like ball. Use your imagination in creating the frame you want!

Step 5: Adding Assembly Details

After you have done your design and printed the tank it usually may require some assembly. You can design your tank so that it doesn't need much screws or glue. You can make your design in parts like i did in my porject for example the hull is connectable to the frame and gears. Keep going!

Step 6: Finishing the Design

In the turret i put a place for the batteries. You don't have to make the turret big if you don't use motors or batteries in the project. Batteries can also placed in the lower body near the tracks if there is room for it. Now you can also add details in the tank. After the hard work you can sort different parts apart and prepare it for printing (if you want) or leave it as it is. Remember to check that every part fits and moves before printing!

Step 7: Putting All Together

When printing is finished and parts are all done you have to assembly it. Now you have to check that any parts didn't get problems during the print and that all fits even if you checked that before. Then you can take needed equipment (pliers, glue, screws and nuts) which helps you to put all parts together. After everything is done there is a option for adding a paint or spray on the surface. Don't use liquids that damage the printing material (pla or other).

Now you have a custom designed tank!

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