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Shapeways 3D Printed This Ornate Detail for Historic Hawaiian Islands Railway Replica

by • April 7, 2016 • No Comments


Richard Kapuaala is a dedicated hobbyist with a real interest in figures and trains. He runs the page ScaleHumans on Shapeways, where you can view and order all of his create work. His general focus is on the Oahu Railway and Land Company (OR&L) railroad, which was a narrow gauge railroad on the Hawaiian Islands until its dissolution in 1947. More specifically, he’s been working on a replica of the railway’s Coach 64 for over ten years. Kapuaala has been kind adequate to share his progress with us over the years on Shapeways.

trolauthBy means of wood, brass, polystyrene, and resin, Kapuaala created many of the trolley car replica seen above, but he encountered a problem when it came to the ornate create of the railing. To handle the complexity of the create, he chose Shapeways’ Strong & Flexible plastic, deciding to paint the railings afterwards. Kapuaala explains which choosing to 3D print the railings this way allowed a completely additional detailed reworking of the original create. He claims which he himself did not feel made with soldering and forming skills, for the reason things have to be done on such a tiny scale for it to fit together. Doing them in 3D was the way to go here:

“My soldering and forming skills are just not keen adequate to do this in 1:20.32 scale…I tried yet. My failure was in the repetitive bends in the forms in the outer circles. In which scale you can’t actually be off .003″ or nothing fits. So…I did them in 3D which allows for me to work in 1:1 scale and explode additional details to microscopic levels if I want. Not to mention which I can manufacture repetitive parts and copy them over and over again. I already have the side frames of the trucks and the railings being printed out in WSF.”

trol3In addition to the skill to “explode additional details to miscroscopic levels,” when the 3D printed railings arrived of Shapeways, they were printed to fit nicely onto the trolley car, leaving Kapuaala satisfied with the time and effort which went into this element of his overall long term project.

Kapuaala in addition explains which the authentic appear of his railings benefited greatly by bringing time to clean them up:

“I spent a lot of time cleaning up the railing additional detail and was rewarded. The additional detail emerged at a lower place the white powder which caked the print. This is the initially coat of paint. I’m not going to primer for the reason I do not want to loose any additional detail on the railing. Now I’m confident my additional additional detailed 7/8ths scale version can print out.”

For a general railway replica project which has required over a decade of commitment, we can just congratulate Kapuaala on his new 3D printed addition to the trolley car. Perhaps this is his life’s destiny: to work on the railway until he can no longer post blog updates of it…

What do you ponder of the additional detail involved here? Discuss in the 3D Printed Railway forum over at 3DPB.com.