3D periodic table

by EzeSko, published

3D periodic table by EzeSko Jan 2, 2018


This is a rotary cylindrical periodic table with hexagonal patterns (That reminds to a carbon nanotube), where each element show its abbreviation, mass and atomic weight, therefore, it is very useful and didactic, as well as artistic.

Diameter: 199.4 mm
Total height (full assembly): 324 mm
Total weight: 759 g

You can see the 3D model in real time here: http://a360.co/2lu27wQ
And here, my disposition of colors: http://a360.co/2DEzm83
Watch this video to see the finished model: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0B7zKwwB8DA
And this to know about the idea of assembly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d52YoaQfFIk

If you like this design, please let me know.


If you want to print this, to clarify possible doubts, you must first read all the following information:

 For some printers, printing the hexagonal pattern can be a bit difficult without supports. If you print it on PLA with a lot of ventilation, there should be no problems. I use a layer height of 0.3 mm, 100% layer fan and only support for a specific part (see attached images). I include a STL called "Test" to see if your printer will be able to correctly print the body of the periodic table with its patterns, if you have doubts.
 Important: You have to join the Honey Body Bottom and Honey Body Bottom top in the correct position, in the images you can see a suggestion for you to guide.
 To join the two parts of the body, I recommend first sanding the contact surface a little. Then apply a glue. In my case, I used a glue called "La gotita" (that is the name of the glue in my country, but I know that also it is known like cyanoacrylate or super glue) with sodium bicarbonate. This combination generates a very strong union.

Ball Bearing

 I designed the ball bearing to be printed with a layer height of 0.175 mm, so it is better to respect it.
 I recommend printing it with a speed equal or lower than 50 mm/s. 
 It includes a support that ensures that it prints well. It must be easy to remove. The ball bearing work well.

 Each element is joined by pressure.
 Before printing all the elements, it is a good idea to print a test and see that they fit well in the hexagonal pattern. Depending on your printer, a small scale may be necessary to fit securely. For example, in my case, I had to scale them on the x and y axis by 100.3% (0.3% larger in those axes) , and with that, they fit very well by pressure.
 You can find the elements ordered in groups in the uploaded files.
 You can choose the colors you want. In my case, I gave colors respecting the visible electromagnetic spectrum, and because I did not have an extra color to the halogens (it would have been great to print them of dark blue and the noble gases of violet), I included them inside the nonmetals group.
 The filament change technique allows the hexagon to have a color, and the element abbreviation, mass and atomic weight, another color, which generates a contrast that allows distinguishing it better. Since my printer is a “Prusa MK2” I use the page https://www.prusaprinters.org/color-print/ to do the filament change. I do not know if this method works for other printers, but you have other options:
* Using Simplify3D (I don’t know methods for other slicers)
Watch this video and read its description: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OiixypnOS8o
* Manually:
It is more tedious, but you can pause the impression and change the filament, at the desired moment.

How I Designed This

I use Fusion360

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Hello EzsSko, I just noticed on the single stl file for potassium ( K) the number is correct but in the alkaline group file it shows up at 11 just a heads up.

Could you add a version of the bottom part that has supports AND is missing the atomic symbol in the middle?

Love the design, so thanks.

Is there a version with one completed hexagonal mesh, ie no need to join? Or is there a reasons that you would not be able to print in one go on a CR10 or Tevo Tornado?

I added the complete structure, it has a height of 309.48 mm on the Z axis, so the Tevo Tornado can print it (even scaling it to 129%).

Que groso! te quedo tremendo!

Muchas gracias!

Could you make a version with the atom symbol is separate from the base. The base could have a cut out where the symbol can be added later with some glue. Also could you have the symbol as a separate file. I will attach my current attempt...its horrible but I tried to make it work.


So I split the model right where the top layer finishes so I could use Prusa color print to set a filament change. I did the swap and apparently the slicer read my g-code as "do not print the very last line of the top layer...wait till he loads the red filament so we can make a nice red mark through the top layer"....thats basically what happened. I then printed the honeycomb separately and attached with super glue and ya looks like shit.

I tried doing separate the symbol from the base myself and since I do not know how to use fusion 360 well I was forced to use 3D Builder and it worked but left very very thin walls in some places.

I gave a small offset to the symbol. However, If it is hard to put it, I recommend, if you have printed the Body Bottom on PLA, that heat the plastic of the Body Bottom with a hair dryer and then put the atomic symbol under pressure.


Current part of the way through with the new design, Thank you again

I would like to see the finished model. If you have a problem on the way, you can tell me.

Element 114 is Flerovium and it is symbol is Fl and the model has Fi. Easy mistake to make but I just wanted to point this out.

Possible suggestion is to separate the Halogen group because currently part of the halogens are in your Nonmetal group and Metalloid, but again this is just a suggestion.

I would like to make a suggestion for the honeycomb and that would be to make the honey comb structure a little bit larger because I have had a couple breaks.

Thank you very much, I corrected the error.
I agree with the idea of the halogens with another color. I did not have an extra color for do that, so I decided this disposition (I clarify this in the instructions). The structure has that thickness after analyzing it in detail, in the case of being thicker the elements would be smaller and therefore more difficult than a normal 0.4 nozzle printer can print the details of mass, weight and abbreviation. That implies that the structure must be larger to compensate, so it should be more than 200 mm in diameter, so not all printers could deal with those dimensions. I did a test and with a good density, or at least 3 perimeters, it holds up very well. I can modify design things, but the idea was for an average 3D printer to be able to deal with this design.

Awesome, thank you very much

Is there any possible way that you could create a file that has the body split so that it could fit on a 150x225 mm bed with a height of 100mm?

The problem is that your bed has a limiting dimension that is 150 mm, then you have to lower the scale to all the piece. The original size in which I raised it is the minimum for a nozzle of 0.4 mm the data of the elements can be printed well. reducing the size of the elements will make the minimum thickness of extrusion does not allow it to come out very definite, unless you have a nozzle smaller than 0.4 mm.

Yes I understand that. I was just wondering if you could splice the model so that it would be possible to print on a smaller printer. (If you could split the model into more pieces so it could be printed)

You can do this easily with program like 3dBuilders. I also attach a file so you can print it on your printer. It is divided into 3 parts. The scale is 75% of the original size.

The elements were in a rar file and it would not let me open it. Could you post it in stl?

I put them in a .rar to be organized in folders, because they are 120 elements. I just downloaded the file and can open them without problems. Try to download it again, and unzip it, and just open it. In the same way, I attach the files compressed in .zip

Seems very similar to

I wouldnt have been able to make the one on Instructables, so I am glad you made this.

I did not know about this design, I see that I'm not the only one who had this idea. Actually my first design was not with hexagonal patterns. It was like that, more square: http://a360.co/2CWrEXL
Then I wanted to make it more artistic.

Ya I like your design better.

I printed the top half of the honey comb and it came out perfect. I tried the bottom part with the honey comb and my print has failed 2 times transitioning from the cylindrical base to the honey comb part.

Can you give me a little more detail? So I can help you. I think that It may be because it has low infil, so it is have trouble starting that part. I use the variable setting wizard of the simplify3D to print it with low infil in the cilindrical part, and then with a higher infil before finishing the cylindrical part.

Great design.

Any chance you can upload a version of Honey_Body_Bottom with built in supports?

I have already uploaded a version with supports. I have not tried to print it yet, so I don't know how well it will work (since they are supports created with Fusion360 and not with a slicer program). In case you want to try, I'd appreciate if you tell me if the support that I added worked well. The manual supports of the Simplify3D are amazing, and that is what I recommend (I tried to export the supports created with this program along with the model as stl but I see that it's not possible).

Did the supports that you created work?

Wow. Wonderful design.

Love this design !! Do you know how can it be as beautiful as yours but with a single extruder ? Amazing !

Actually, I did it with a printer with a single extruder. I explain how I did it in the instructions section

Oops ! Thanks for your answer ! ;p

Fantastic! This is a great work of art, as well as being a fun resource for knowledge and learning. Very well done. The colours really bring it to life :)

Thank you very much, I'm glad you liked it.

This is an amazing idea ! Thanks for sharing.

Do you think it would be possible to make a flat version of the grid, to hang on a wall ? That would be awesome !

Of course, there are several ways to do it. You can make a flat support to fit the pieces, that if I should be printed in several parts. Another way is to make each element fit together like a puzzle. You can even print all the elements, paste them with glues on a cardboard-like surface, and then cut according to the shape.

This is brilliant, thanks for designing this. I am fairly new to Fusion 360 could you share the Fusion 360 file for this as well?. Just would love to have a look at the way you drew this up. Thanks

I do not know to what extent it can be of help, I am very disorganized working. Let me order it a little and then upload it.

nice license. I was going to make a container extruded from the hexagons. But I guess you can make that yourself if you want. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Thanks! You mean one similar to the file that I upload called Honey_Body_Bottom? I can modify it to adapt it to whatever you want.

This is really brilliant.