If you need to paint or finish a part, paint cones are a must. They hold your part above the surface. They allow you to hold a wet part without marking it. They can hold spherical parts in place and stabilize compicated shaped ones.
These are serious paint cones. Unlike cheap printable or commercial ones, those have all you want :
- tetrahedron scalable shape for best stability
- securable in place with screws
- star shape (not pyramidal) to prevent overspray bouncing
- heavy duty shape to hold both heavy and light parts even on 3 cones only
"A little upgrade after 10 months using them in loads of projects. The initial set printed as prototype is still in use. I printed 12 of them out of PLA, planning to upgrade some or replace damaged ones. I still have 6 brand new ones I never used, and the 6 in use are still working as new. So don't print spare parts if you don't need it. They're much stronger than expected and even working in heavy furniture projects and various types of solvent paint and varnishes, they don't damage at all. I believe it's a lifetime tool."
Best print : 0.3mm Nozzle, 0.2 layers, 4 walls, 6 layers for top and bottom
Print it for lifetime. Don't be cheap with infill, that cones don't need that much plastic anyways. In most cases you only need 3 cones to hold a part properly.
If you are lucky enough to have a dedicated finishing area secure them !
Unlike light and slippy ones, you can secure the serious paint cones in place with three 4mm screws (8x1). And you'll never get a cone sliding or falling again when moving your part.
At last here's trustable paint cones !
When I was a child, you could not find paint cones un general stores. So people just drive a nail out of a small offcut base, and that was our paint cones. But nails was hard enough to mark or scratch the wood. Actualy we get cheap paint cones from china. They're cheap, so they're light. You have trouble to get them in place, especialy when you move heavy parts over it.
Several weeks ago, I was spaying some finish over a piece of furniture. It's a moment you want everythings to work perfectly. Any accident and you need to whait for the part to dry then go back to the sanding. This time one of my chinese paint cone just break under the weight of my furniture and the two other slips out. Of course my finishing was destroy instantly. Worst of all, a corner hit hardly the table and be damaged. Cheap paint cones are made to make money to the seller, not to get the job done properly. I promissed I'll never waste several hours of work again because of a stupid cheap piece of plastic.
First I wanted the shape to be as stable as possible. Cheap chinese cones are too sharp. So the base is shorter than the height. It's not stable enough. Obviously the best shape for stability is the tetrahedron, which is better than any other shape for stability vs footprint, so here I've got the shape I want.
Seccond I wanted the cone to be heavy duty to be strong enough for any purpose. Chinese cones uses thin walls. This is rubbish. I wanted strong walls so I drawed thick ones. To reduce printing time, I found that the star shape allows to reduce printing path while offering extra strenght : it's like 3 squares welded together on a large base. The star shape prevents overspray to bounce on the cone and reach the part too.
Last, I wanted it to stay in place whatever you do. When you hold a heavy piece of furniture or have a wet part in front of you and a spray gun in hand, you don't want to worry about if one of your paint cones is still in place. So I wonder about what's the best way to secure a cone. Of course, as the bottom is flat, you can glue it or secure it with double sided tape. So I decided the bottom to be dead flat. But as time goes by any glue or tape can fail, especialy if you use paint or varnished that uses solvents. So I decided to put 3 countersik screw holes in the base. Even with time a screw will be hard to fail.
I believe I came to the simplest possible shape, untill you want to keep all the purposes.
Scale the Serious Paint Cone to Match your needs
I work most of the time life size parts, like pieces of art or furniture. By experience, I found a 30mm (which is between 1,1/8" and 1,1/4") was a good size to make a part strong enough for heavy parts I build.
Anyways you can scale the cone to the size you need, if you work smaller or very large parts.