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Thread: 3D Printing a lens board adapter?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    88

    3D Printing a lens board adapter?

    I'm thinkning about this frankencamera project and having a lensboard printed that can have a cone on it onto which I can attach a body.

    Is there anyone that has experiences with printers? I dont want to set up shop, I just want to make one. It would be a sinar board.

    Does anyone have a source for STL files for lensboards and adapters?

  2. #2

    Re: 3D Printing a lens bard adapter?

    There are Sinar board STL files on thingiverse. I haven't tried to print them.
    https://www.thingiverse.com/search?q...&sort=relevant

    It would be relatively easy to make an 3-D printed adapter, but I would worry about the materials. PLA is brittle and heat sensitive, and other material (like PETG) may not be light tight. ABS might be better, but is more difficult to print.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Apr 2020
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    Washington, DC
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    85

    Re: 3D Printing a lens bard adapter?

    The Ebay user "inireshop" has tons of 3D-printed lens boards in his Ebay store. Maybe get in touch with him/her?

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Posts
    354

    Re: 3D Printing a lens bard adapter?

    Having used 3D printing, stereolithography etc since 1998 or something around that time I have my doubts for it in this use. Yes, it seems easy but it isn't. If you can make a .stl file, you can make a file to have it fabricated any other way. Maybe not faster, maybe more expensive (but you might be surprised how little) but it will be stronger, better finished with better tolerances, more stable, and far more repeatable.

    Don't forget 3D printing/stere is about rapid prototyping. It still isn't ready for fabrication. This is great is you have an idea for something like an adapter so you can check if it fits, works as intended. After that you go to real production.
    Expert in non-working solutions.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Apr 2020
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    163

    Re: 3D Printing a lens board adapter?

    3D printing is fine for prototyping, and light use. With some work, you can even get "heavy duty" parts out of it. It doesn't compare to CNC milled metal, but it's considerably cheaper and easier, too.

    I've got a 3D printed crank on my Bronica, a 3D printed 120 film holder (light tight), and I'm in the process of printing the body for a 6x12 camera (the 'kraken' from http://frozenphoton.com). I recently printed a Copal 1 "technika" style board using a downloaded model-- the hole is 41.5mm in the design, my print came out at 41.45mm. That, for my printer, is a little sloppy. It may be time for a CLA.

    Still, though, some light sanding, and I've got a board that's more than capable of holding my heaviest lens (210mm f/5.6 Caltar-S) safely.

    Personally, I prefer PETG for things like this. It's available in opaque (I'm currently working through a roll of Kodak branded PETG opaque black), and really is impervious to light, even at just a few layers.

    PETG is slightly annoying because it requires higher temps to print, and you can't print as fast as PLA. But it's very strong, it's slightly more flexible than PLA (which tends to be brittle, and can start to deform at 120 degrees F, a temperature easily reachable in a car in the summer in Florida). ABS is a straight-up pain. The fumes are annoying, it has a tendency to warp, and it's temperature sensitive enough that you only want to print it in an enclosed printer. Nylon is a material for experts-- it tends to absorb moisture from the air more than other filaments (did I mention I live in Florida?).

    It's not for everyone-- being able to do 3D modeling in some type of CAD is useful (although there are huge numbers of models online). Also, while the printers themselves tend to be accurate, figuring out the right temperature(s) for printing can be tedious, especially since it can vary by spool.

    It's a bit like darkroom printing-- It's more time-consuming, than difficult, and requires patience to learn to get the most out of the process. On the plus side, you can use someone else's negatives.

    For the OP: I would seek out someone like Ethan at Cameradactyl who loves getting into frankencamera projects. I'd offer to help, but I honestly don't have enough free time to be useful right now.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    88

    Re: 3D Printing a lens board adapter?

    I'm pretty proficient at the modeling part. I'm just not a 3D printer guy. I'll check in with the suggested sources.

  7. #7

    Re: 3D Printing a lens board adapter?

    ... I'm in the process of printing the body for a 6x12 camera (the 'kraken' from http://frozenphoton.com).
    This looks great! I love the idea of having a "disposable" 6x12. My Horseman is lovely, but its value prevents me from taking risks with it, even just throwing into a bag when I take a bike ride.
    Last edited by Jason Greenberg Motamedi; 14-Aug-2020 at 18:17.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    372

    Re: 3D Printing a lens board adapter?

    For things like lens boards or adapters (I have one for using Wista/Technika boards on my MPP VII), OpenSCAD works well. It is usually just a case of describing an object in terms of simple primitive shapes. In the case of my adapter I described both MPP and Wista boards, then subtracted the Wista one from the MPP and printed the difference. I used black ABS with 100% infill. I could have sent the STL file to a service.

    The caveat for not doing this yourself is can you justify the cost/time of learning the printer and using it, and will you have enough projects to make it worth the effort? Things like lensboards are often better cut from plywood or metal because of the loading and twisting stresses.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    141

    Re: 3D Printing a lens board adapter?

    I must admit that I'd go for a simple tapered shape in 3mm birch ply before I'd look at 3D printing, unless you know someone who has already done the learning part of using the device, so that you don't have to.

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