Hey I want one of these!

Booli

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Okay this is pretty cool. Apparently there is this new technology called '3d Printing' and it can let you make stuff from your own printer (Actual physical stuff). I would love to make one of these.

https://pinshape.com/items/22238-3d-printed-laser-cut-folding-ukulele-soprano-size

Does anyone here have any knowledge on this? I hope it's not expensive.

Actually that uke is made from a flat board of wood, with it's pieces cut by a computer guided laser beam, not unlike a CNC machine or Plasma Cutter which are both similar.

OTOH- 3-D printing, has a similar carriage assembly to a large-format INKJET printer, but instead of the 'print head' being fed with ink, it is fed with various kinds of 'plastic' string, that is fed from a spool into a heated nozzle that monetarily liquifies the plastic as it exits the nozzle (similar to a hot-melt glue gun used in crafting). the actual 'printing' is done in layers, like a sandwich and is controlled from computer programs to create something out of your 3-D computer designs.

About a year ago I was looking at getting a 3-D printer and IIRC you can get a decent one for about $500 USD, but some assembly is required and then you have to learn how to use all the software, and the 'filament' which is the media on the spool that it prints from comes in all different compositions, densities and colors

Also, I remember seeing a few different soprano ukes on ThingVerse, which is a site that lets you download the actual CAD documents to print the 3-D things from, and the authors of said 'things' said that it took something like 28 hrs to 3-D print the different parts of a soprano uke, and that by the time you spent for the electricity to run this 500 watt MakerBot or similar, and the cost of the ABS media, you are not gaining anything versus just buying a Makala Waterman, Woodi or Bugsgear for $50, other than the 'cool' factor with a 3-D printed PLASTIC uke, which might end up costing your OVER $100 USD depending upon how much media you waste during your possible 100 hours of trial and error while learning on and trying to figure out how to fine tune your OWN 3-D printer.

They are temperamental and each one needs a slight bit of tuning and fiddling to get optimal performance from it.

For more info about 3-D Printing, you might want to look at the following web sites:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3D_printing
http://3dprinting.com/what-is-3d-printing/
http://explainingthefuture.com/3dprinting.html
https://3dprint.com/82272/what-3d-printing-works/

http://www.shapeways.com/
http://thingiverse.com

http://hackaday.com
http://makezine.com
http://makerbot.com
http://adafruit.com
http://sparkfun.com

If you want info on how that wood uke from your link was created and what kind of machines are used, there's info on the maker's own web site (linked in the description) or you can just search google for

laser cutter
or
plasma cutter
or
CNC machine

and you will find plenty of info

Hope this helps....:)
 

musicluva

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@Booli Well first what an awesome response! I don't mind the learning curve but need to save up a little if it's over or around the $500 range. Unless I magically become a calculus expert and boost my income. Will definitely keep you guys posted. Thanks a lot!
 
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Croaky Keith

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There is also a place online where you send your program & they will print it, it is used a lot in the model making world.
 

Croaky Keith

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Yep, that's the one I was trying to think of, & I see now that you had listed it. :eek:ld:
 

Dan Gleibitz

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@Booli Well first what an awesome response! I don't mind the learning curve but need to save up a little if it's over or around the $500 range. Will definitely keep you guys posted. Thanks a lot!

I have a laser cutter and a 3D printer. You can get a decent 3D printer for $500, but a decent laser cutter will set you back $10,000.

I think this concept is clever, but it's a lot of investment, effort, and learning to make something that looks meh and sounds awful. The folding feature is interesting though, I can see how it could be an option for a tiny travel uke for travel practise regardless of sound.

That said, it does make me wonder what it would take to make a folding travel uke that sounds good. I suspect not all that much. I'd make the bridge detachable and use a similar folding mechanism with a single (but effective) neck bolt, then make the soundbox fairly traditional (except for the cavity for when the neck is folded back....

Hmm.... anybody looking for a joint project?
 

Booli

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I have a laser cutter and a 3D printer. You can get a decent 3D printer for $500, but a decent laser cutter will set you back $10,000.

I think this concept is clever, but it's a lot of investment, effort, and learning to make something that looks meh and sounds awful. The folding feature is interesting though, I can see how it could be an option for a tiny travel uke for travel practise regardless of sound.

That said, it does make me wonder what it would take to make a folding travel uke that sounds good. I suspect not all that much. I'd make the bridge detachable and use a similar folding mechanism with a single (but effective) neck bolt, then make the soundbox fairly traditional (except for the cavity for when the neck is folded back....

Hmm.... anybody looking for a joint project?

About 18 months ago, there were links and talk about a Hawaiian luthier who had made a travel uke, whereby the neck unscrewed completely and stored INSIDE the body. It was all made of wood, and the body was rectangular like a wine box. The were offered for sale via ebay in soprano, concert and tenor size, for something like $100, $125 & $140 respectively. I do not recall the name. Maybe someone else here on UU can chime in.

Also, fellow UU brother Daniel Hulbert has built a few different 'folding' and travel ukuleles which you can find if you search his post history here on UU, all of which have videos and/or links to the build log on his web site.

So, I kinda think it's been 'done before' and if you want to make any kind of uke like this for yourself, you might want to get in touch with those folks who might be able to offer some help and save you some grief, money and time as opposed to starting from scratch.