[2014-10-27] Added large sizes, SCAD option to make 4 spiders at once.
Happy Halloween! Here's a simple tweakable OpenSCAD script that can produce a variety of spider shapes. The spider is designed to be easily printed flat, and then the legs can be heated and bent into more interesting poses. Even flat these spiders make a great decoration for any occasion!
*Special thanks to co-designer Marlo-Ann for help and inspiration!
Posing the legs makes these spiders appear larger, more animated, and extra creepy! Once a spider has finished printing remove it from the build plate and use a heat-gun, lightbulb, or other heat source to soften leg joints and pose them. For the most lifelike appearance, be sure to bend the legs upward at the body first, and try to get sharp angles on the leg joints. The mouth parts can be bent downward to appear more authentic as well.
The nice thing about OpenSCAD (and CAD generally) is that you can use variables to make variants of your models (and even animate with them). So when I make a design in OpenSCAD I try to put in a few levers to make it easy to adjust and modify dimensions and other parameters. If you've only tried downloading and printing STL files so far, try opening up some of those SCAD files and checking them out. For these spiders you can change the angles of leg joints, the lift and length of the abdomen, and the relative sizes of each body part.
You should find these spiders very quick and easy to print. The medium sized spider prints in under 15 minutes!
You can use the included STLs or edit the spiders.scad file to produce a spider more to your liking! By default the spider is asymmetrical with a slightly raised abdomen (an aggressive posture).
There are a few explicit parameters you can change right away. For example spider(fat=true); will produce a spider with thicker legs more suited for printing at smaller sizes, while spider(elbow=[25,25]); makes a spider with more bent joints. Other possible adjustments should be apparent in the source code.
We printed these in glowing PLA and they look really nice, as you can see!