Parametric Magic Wand

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Published on March 18, 2012
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Description

Aside from that, this is an experiment in using OpenSCAD's linear_extrude function, twisting and extruding a circle to form a cool magic rod. I then use the same technique to make screws and screw holes, allowing me to make a long magic wand. This technique of making screws and nuts is pretty simple to code and looks like it'll work well. Note that the screws and holes are pointed, so that the holes can print with 45 degree slopes inside (i.e. so no bridging).

The way the sphere fits onto the head of the wand also looks pretty nifty, if I say so myself.

I haven't printed it yet. (Waiting for Replicator....). When I print one, I'll update here.

Instructions

You can print the STL as-is, scaled to fit your printer, screw the parts together, and have a five segment magic wand. If you have 'glow in the dark' filament, that would probably be ideal.

Play around with the parameters to generate wands of different sizes. In particular:

h = height of a rod segment
cr = radius of the circle that forms the rod
w = distance of 'wiggle' in the rod, 2 is subtle, 10 is wacky (and might generate angles over 45 degrees)
nw = number of 'wiggles' in each rod segment
gap = the distance between each screw and the hole in the next rod segment
spacing = the spacing between rod segments arranged in a row and 'plated'. If you make the rod very wide, you will need to increase the spacing as well.
c = 'crossiness'. 0 = spiral, 1 = spiral and counter-spiral, 2 = four spirals, forms cross pattern.

Uncomment 'stacked()' and comment 'plated()' to view the rod as it would assemble. Switch back to print.

If you want more rod segments, add more mid() statements into 'plated' until you have as many as you like. Don't forget to translate them so that they don't overlap with other rod segments.
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I printed it, and while the top and bottom parts are fine, the 'screw' for the middle sections is rotated incorrectly so the outer spiral isn't properly aligned. I'll fix it and update here shortly.

That being said, printed in glow-in-the-dark plastic ROCKED.

Finally printed it, and I'm very pleased. In particular, the spiral screws and screw holes work perfectly, so the segments join together smoothly, and with exactly the right rotation so the surface spiral is continuous across the joins. And it prints with no support, making it a very clean print. I just uploaded a photo of a "fat" magic wand, and I'm printing a thinner one as well. Magical fun! =-X

I printed a long wand, and while the top and bottom pieces fit together perfectly, the threads on the middle connectors need to be rotated - when they're screwed together the outer spiral isn't continuous.

Wow ... make sure you dip that in acetone to make it smooth, otherwise it could be very uncomfortable in your ... hand.

The next version will light up! More magic!

Funny how a 3 KB OpenSCAD script can generate an 18 MB STL file. Extruding a circle into a spiral mesh generates a lot of data points, even if the resolution isn't particularly high.