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Author Topic: Can you 3D print a spring under tension?  (Read 2186 times)

Offline Expectant_Philosopher

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Can you 3D print a spring under tension?
« on: 12/09/2014 23:18:13 »
Can you 3D print a spring so that when it is finished it is immediately under tension?  This could be useful to have stored energy to draw on, right as the device finished printing.


 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Can you 3D print a spring under tension?
« Reply #1 on: 13/09/2014 01:22:42 »
Conventional 3D printers which apply successive layers of material on other layers rely on the material beneath staying where it was put.
If the material already deposited pushes up into the print head, you can end with some bizarre effects.

However, as you add more material on top of the lower material, the extra weight will cause lower layers of the spring to compress slightly, so there will be some compression of the spring. If you now rotate the spring 90 degrees, it will attempt to extend - and you may be able to extract a small amount of energy from this.

But the energy required to 3D print a spring is far more than you can get out of the relaxation of such a spring, by the time you include the energy to get the raw material to the print head, heating and extruding the material, moving the print head backwards and forwards, and lowering the platform holding the spring.
 
 

Offline Expectant_Philosopher

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Re: Can you 3D print a spring under tension?
« Reply #2 on: 13/09/2014 05:40:46 »
There are many forms of springs, flat watch type springs, long linear springs, spring levers, tension springs, heavy coil springs  etc. if when laying down the material you would provide a support that works against the release of tension, could you then remove the support at the end of manufacture? I wonder what this would tell us about the conservation of momentum if such were possible. 
 

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Re: Can you 3D print a spring under tension?
« Reply #2 on: 13/09/2014 05:40:46 »

 

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