Often smartphone users try to place their mobile device so that it is convenient to use: watch movies, take pictures, communicate via video call. Holders and tripods for smartphones are widely available on the market, but these are mass-produced models. If you want a holder that no one else has, you have to print it out on a 3D printer.
Printing a phone holder on a 3D printer
Cell phone stands and tripods can be printed on a 3D printer. Such products will not only perform a utilitarian function, but also will be a unique object of interior decoration. The main thing – have patience, choose a suitable design, create a digital model or download it from the Internet and send it to print. And this article will tell you which filament is suitable for work and how to avoid common mistakes.
Which model should I choose?
The choice of model is determined by the purpose of use:
- The phone is needed for making conversations, making video calls, but the hands are busy with some work. In such cases, the mobile device is set vertically, and the stand is a simple design, resembling a pouch with a stop.
- The screen is used to view video content. For convenience, the phone is placed horizontally. This tripod is structurally similar to the previous model, only it will be oriented in a horizontal position.
- If you need a periodic adjustment of the display position, the stand will have a rotating console mechanism.
Important: If the holder will be used as a tripod, ensuring the immobility of the phone during shooting, this design will be the most optimal. It will be very convenient to change the position of the smartphone camera.
- Holder for the phone will be used as a design element of the interior. Such holders can be the most unusual: in the form of fantastic animals, retro-telephone bodies, surrealistic objects, flower buds – whatever the exuberant imagination of the smartphone holder will prompt.
- The most difficult to print are models with an adjustable console. This is a prefabricated object, to create it print several parts and connect them to each other.
What material to choose?
To print on a 3D printer Holder for a smartphone will do PLA, PETG, ABS, Nylon. It is preferable to print PLA models with a lot of small elements – this material provides the best detail. The quality of volumetric objects is not inferior to PETG. Both plastics do not require special printer settings, details are made of them obtained with a given accuracy.
Important: When printing prefabricated models it is necessary to keep the size of individual elements. Otherwise, without mechanical modification it will not be possible to mount the stand so that the swivel mechanisms work properly.
Decorative holders can be printed with ABS-plastic. Post-treatment of the model in an acetone bath will give a lacquer effect, and the solvent vapors will increase the adhesion of the layers.
Nylon is a finicky material. High shrinkage and high temperature extrusion scares 3D-printer users, especially beginners. But products made of it are extremely strong, and the thin walls remain flexible. In addition, nylon shows minimal coefficient of friction, which means that all parts of the adjustable arms will rotate easily and wear and tear will be minimal.
How do I print a tripod or phone holder?
The easiest way is to choose a ready-made 3D model and download the STL file from the Internet. If you have skills in programs for creating digital spatial objects, the stand can be created from scratch: come up with a design, calculate the dimensions, prepare a file of the required format.
Then the work order will be the same for the downloaded model, and for the created by yourself:
- The object is sent to the slicer program.
Attention! Depending on the material, used for printing, the settings are adjusted, in particular the scaling of the model taking into account the shrinkage of the filament.
- The G-code file is loaded into the 3D printer to start the printing process. It is better to print several small parts separately, rather than having them all on one workbench at once. Printing multiple elements at once requires very precise retract settings, otherwise post-processing will require a lot of effort.
- The finished stand is sanded and painted, if it is provided by design idea, assembled, if it is printed of several parts.
Important: It is not always easier to print the stand as a single whole. The complex geometry of the object will require the creation of supports and their subsequent removal. It may be preferable for some to print a few simple shaped parts and then assemble the finished stand from them.
Mistakes when printing a phone stand and how to avoid them
Getting the expected result is hindered by common mistakes that are most often made when printing spatial models:
- Incorrect printer settings will distort the shape and dimensions of the product. These may include mismatching requirements with printer capabilities, incorrect layer thickness, print speed, and extruder and table temperatures.
Solution: when specifying printing parameters in the slicer, consider the potential of the printing device, the type of filament, the shape of the future object and adjust the settings accordingly.
- Unsuitable filament is selected, the detail of the model is insufficient, the geometry of the part is broken.
The solution: Each specific model needs a material with specific properties. High-precision parts are printed in PLA and PETG.
Attention: When giving preference to a particular filament, the first step is to find out whether the printer can work with this material.
- Printed parts can not be assembled together because dimensions do not match. Possible reasons for this are shrinkage of the plastic or incorrect modeling.
Solution: choose a different filament with minimal shrinkage, try “playing with” the slicer settings to compensate for dimensional changes as the plastic cools down. If mistakes are made while creating a digital model, it is necessary to check all dimensions of drawings, correct inaccuracies and re-create the STL file.
The main principle to avoid mistakes is to learn the theory and basics of 3D printing and put them into practice.
A 3D-printed phone stand is of the same quality as a factory-made product and has a unique design at the same time. In addition, functionally it will be best suited to the tasks set by the user. And the recommendations voiced in the article will help to achieve quality 3D-printing results.