Test of the SolderDoodle for 3D printing

2016-06-17

I have finally received my SolderDoodle! I funded this project on Kickstarter in May 2015. It arrives finally in my mailbox, last week. You might wonder what it is? It is simply a re-organized portable soldering iron into a 3d printing finishing tool.

Solderdoodle

Since I am printing a lot in our digital fabrication lab @USJ, I was quite interested to test this tool and see whether it would fit into our post-production process. I must admit, up until now, our post-production is non-existent! We had too many prints to manage for students, no time to look at it. But things have changed, thanks to one of our students doing a 2 months internship for Minchee Lab. We are now investigating post-processing, I will write more about it in the future. For now, let’s look at the solderdoodle.

Solderdoodle will not solve all your 3d printing problems but it can save you some time to clean your printed parts. It has by default 3 different tips: one is a kind of knife, one a small cup and one a needle style. Each of them can have their use in different cases. As you can see below on my photos, I tried it on miniatures of Nefertiti. I printed it with support under the chin, but not on the hears, therefore, I had 2 separate problems: under the chin, the material is not enough dense and we can see through. On the hears, since it printed out of nothing, material has been leaking around before being able to print properly the remaining part. In both case, the tool, helped me to: 1) resurface the chin by adding some extra material (need of course some sanding later), 2) on the hear side, remove the extra material that is not originally part of the model.

I can definitively see how I could use this tool in the future. It is heating pretty fast and it is very easy to use. For sure you are saving some time on post-processing. I will probably use it more, specially on the real size Nefertiti that we are currently printing…
We can also mention Retouch 3D, a similar tool also available on the market.