I was looking at some projects on the site the other day and saw a laser cut Serotonin necklace and thought it would be fun to make a 3D printed version that also has rhinestones! I fiddled with the design until It came out just the way I wanted it and this is the results! I thought Serotonin was a good molecule for this project but decided to branch out and so far I have also made Dopamine, Adrenaline, GABA, and Caffeine. I'll talk a little about each molecule in Step 2.
If anyone is interested in the designs with holes instead of inserts for Rhinestones, let me know. It should be a fairly quick and easy process to adapt the design for that.
If you are interested in molecules but not as necklaces, check out these molecule ornaments.
Step 1: Supplies and Files
- 3D Printer of choice - I have a Prusa MK3
- 1.75mm PLA Filament in color of choice - I used...
For Jewelry Making:
Step 2: Designing the Molecules
I used Tinkercad to design the molecules and it was a very finicky process (not because of Tinkercad but because of the way I wanted the design to look).
I started by designing the parts I needed to make it. This consisted of an oval cylinder and a cylinder with a cone cutout for a rhinestone. I used an oval cylinder for the connector pieces because I didn't want those pieces to just be normal rectangles, I wanted to soften it up a bit and give it some more detail.
In order to get the dimensions about right, I started by bringing in a basic design of the molecule and then scaling it to the length and width I wanted. When I had that, I took my starting pieces and started putting it together. Above you can see how I worked to get the 3 piece intersections and 2 piece intersections to make sure the corners and joins all looked right. Once I finished a design, I constantly exported it and brought it into the slicer to find any errors. Then I went back to Tinkercad and made alterations and repeated the process until I had the final design I wanted.
Since some of the molecules were similar, when I could, I worked with a finished design and altered it to make the new design such as Dopamine and Adrenaline.
I ended up making:
- Serotonin - well-being and happiness
- Dopamine - reward-motivated behavior (also sometimes considered the pleasure-seeking molecule)
- Adrenaline - causing increased heart rate, it is the molecule of energy
- Caffeine - is a psychoactive drug, known for causing awakeness
- GABA (gamma-Aminobutyric acid) - reduces excitability / anti-anxiety
Step 3: Print!
I didn't really do anything special for printing except for the 100% infill to make them as sturdy as possible.
Step 4: Gluing
Start by gluing the rhinestones in their spots. Tweezers make it easier to put the rhinestones down on the glue.
Step 5: Assemble the Necklace
Make it however you want, but for mine, I took two pieces of fine chain at about 6.5" long and connected them to the molecule using the 4mm jump rings.
On the other end of the chains, I attached the larger jump ring to one and the clasp to the other.
Step 6: All the Molecules!
Any other molecules you think would make cute pendants? Share your ideas :)