First Practical 3D Printing Project

digital flash snoot

Just received word that my 3D Printer has shipped and will probably arrive within the next week. While I’m sure that it will take a lot of time to get used to, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to what my first ‘practical’ project should be.

Of course I’ll print some Yoda heads – everyone seems to. And there’s a whole long list of advanced projects, like R/C cars and quad copters that I want to tackle eventually. But I really want to produce something useful, something that I can share with people to convince them that a 3D printer can be much more than just a hobby or a black hole to pour money into.

Since I do quite a bit of product photography for print magazine product reviews, like ROBOT Magazine, and for my two primary websites, I finally decided to design and 3D print a snoot for some of my flash units. Snoots, although the name actually sounds kind of laughable, are quite good at directing light exactly where you want it in an image without having extraneous light ruining the shot.

Some DIY photographers have made quick & dirty shoots by taping together bundles of black drinking straws. It works, but unfortunately it doesn’t look very professional. On the other hand, by designing and printing my own snoot I will have total control over how the exterior looks.

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Avid technologist with a passion for 3D printing, RepRap, and robots of all types and sizes.

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