26 prints. 25 color changes. 10 Zoffset adjustments. 3 hours. And that's not including designing time (which I'm scared to tally.)
I really, really wanted to see how far I could push multicolor printing, and I think this is it; I'm not sure I can push any farther.
What we have here is a 5 color bottle opener with text on the 4 edges. I went with a play on the classic Simpsons line: "Beer. Cause of. Solution to. Problems" ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUVwR0rw5fk )
As you can imagine, the process was pretty tricky. I needed to make and position an object for each color in OpenSCAD. Then, because this was going to be done as a series of prints, I needed to pre-slice those objects into 2 layer pieces (except for the top and bottom - those were 4 layers)
The main challenge I had was getting the text to skein faithfully. Rounded edges caused the text hole to sometimes be a different size than the text that was going there.
So... after 10 hours of trying other fonts... I made my own custom font. sort of. I only made the letters I needed. With layer thickness and path width as variables, I was able to get hole and text to match. But it really only came together once I added a solid bar behind each of the text objects. This caused each layer of the text to be skeined as a nearly-continuous stream, which really improved final quality.
Anyway. I'm tired. Time to go lay down.
More info here: http://brettbeauregard.com/blog/2011/10/a-proper-multi-color-print/
UPDATE: I created the rest of the alphabet and put it into a work-in-progress font here: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:12618
Abandon all sense of time
Figure out how to adjust layer thickness in the scad (mine is 0.36mm)
Decide that you really don't want to do this
Wow you still want to do this? Ok. Make the ~26 files you'll need.
Still want to do this?
Ok. Print the files in order, adjusting the Z-offset in the motherboard settings when necessary, and changing colors between each print.
- Check yourself into the looney bin. Maybe they'll give you a room next to mine.