Shane's Coral Frag Plugs

by sgraber, published

Shane's Coral Frag Plugs by sgraber Feb 4, 2012


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This Thing is a coral frag plug that is used when propagating (i.e. "fragging") coral in the saltwater aquarium hobby.

Coral fragments are either cut or broken off of the mother colony and then glued to this frag plug using cyanoacrylate gel (superglue). The resulting fragged coral plug is mounted into 14mm eggcrate that is submerged in the saltwater aquarium where it is left until it is either traded with another hobbyist or sold at a frag swap.

I have uploaded four variations on a concept that I have been toying with for what might be useful to a coral farmer. I am keenly interested in optimizing this concept so that it Works for those needing a good, quality, multi-purpose coral frag plug so please leave comments on how I might improve this Thing.


Additional fragging tools that might be of interest:

  1. Joanne's Frag Plugs by engineglue: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:16959
  2. Hemostat by CaptainKirk: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:13152
  3. Tweezers - either the ones by SimonH http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:7768 or http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:638 by hoeken
  4. Pliers: russrobot http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:11332, Starno http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1091, or tonyv http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:12266
  5. A detachable version this frag plug: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:17313

If you see other tools of interest, please let me know in the comments and I'll add links to them here.

This particular thing is a mashup of the Pin Connectors V2 by tbuser (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:10541) and the Knurled Surface Finishing Library by aubenc (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:9095).

When I saw the Pin Connectors, I knew I wanted to model a coral frag plug using it at some point as it should be (relatively) easy to make something that would fit and snap lightly into a 14mm eggcrate hole. The Knurled Surface Finishing Library gives the top of the frag plug a nice surface finish for easy gripping in a wet environment.

I have currently uploaded four concepts (along with printing plates for each):

  1. One hole and one slit in the base
  2. One hole and a cross-slit in the base
  3. Four holes centered on the cross-slits in the base
  4. Four holes 45 degrees off of the cross-slits in the base

The current features of these frag plugs are:

  1. Knurled edges on all frag plugs for easy gripping when wet
  2. At least one hole in each top for either:
        a) attaching a tyvek or ziptie tag for identification
        b) using a rubber band to hold down the coral frag
  3. A large central depression for holding glue
  4. Axial depressions for added attachment points for the coral as it attaches
  5. A "pin" base that lightly "snaps" into 14 mm eggcrate using a 14.5 mm lip. This lip is there to keep the frag plug in place in case its placed in a high flow area.
  6. At least one slit in the base in case one prefers to slide the plug onto the eggcrate instead of into the eggcrate hole.
  7. Some plugs have cross-slits so that they can also be placed on the cross-piece of eggcrate.

Print with 100% infill using either ABS or PLA.

Please, if you use this, leave feedback on how I can improve the design! :)

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Have you found if PLA is safe for use in a saltwater aquarium?

Variations on the same concept: http://imgur.com/a/j7y3dhttp://imgur.com/a/j7y3d

Hopefully I'll have some time to release the files tomorrow. :)

Wow! Very complex. Nicely done!