Warning!!! As with any craft, violin making and 3D printing requires attention to safety. Do not attempt to build the violin without parental supervision. When in doubt, ask for assistance.
We like Hatchbox filament because of its quality and low cost, but any filament on Amazon with a 4 star rating from more than 10 people is probably fine.
CARBON FIBER RODS
8mm (aka 5/16 inch) outer diameter by 500mm length carbon fiber rod. No cutting necessary
New to 3D printing?
In order to make the violin we’re going to need a 3D printer. It needs to be wide enough to print the neck and tall enough to print the violin body’s 3 sections.
First layer problems
A majority of the problems from 3d printing can stem from the first layer not adhering properly to the print bed. We recommend taking the following precautions when printing.
- Always make sure the bed is properly leveled.
- Put down fresh blue tape if any of the print area's tape shows signs of peeling.
* extra credit *
Sand the blue tape with 100 grit sandpaper to help prevent warping
We're not trying to write the book on 3d printing. A great first step down the rabbit hole can be found here.
All together, the violin will take ~500 grams of plastic to print. Assuming there aren't too many failed prints, you should be able to make the entire hovalin with a single 1kg roll of plastic.
Remove all supports and skirts from the printed parts.
Sanding the fretboard will help get rid of any buzzing overtones. It can also give the violin a more finished look. I've had good results by sanding at 100 grit, then moving on to 300, and then 600 grit sandpaper. For extra credit, sand the rest of the surfaces as well.
Install Tuner Pegs
Snap off the screw holes on the tuner pegs using a wrench.
Insert the tuning pegs into the violin neck as shown in the picture.
Once the pegs are pushed into place, screw in the top piece, first by hand, then using a 10mm hex wrench.
Fit together the bottom, middle, and top pieces. Once the pieces are locked together, slide the corresponding joints into place. Be sure to position the joints so that their embossed word "top" or "bot" matches the corresponding "top" or "bot" on the violin body. Once the joints are inserted, slide the neck into place.
Feed the strings through the hole at the base of the violin, through the hole at the top of the neck, and then through the tuning peg.
Dealing with string deflection
Once the strings are installed and tuned, each violin will have a slightly different amount of deflection between the neck and the strings due to the material, print settings, and printer used. If the strings rest too close to the violin neck, detune, remove the carbon fiber rod, and re-tune. Over time, the strings' action will bend the violin towards an acceptable distance from the neck. Note: It's okay to play the violin without the carbon fiber rod, but over time, PLA will continue to warp if the carbon fiber rod is not installed.
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