copper electroplating a 3d print

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obfuscated
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Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2016 1:35 pm

copper electroplating a 3d print

Postby obfuscated » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:44 pm

So over the weekend I tried copper electroplating a 3d print.

copperskull.jpg
copperskull2.jpg


Basically I painted the ABS print with graphite and acetone and then followed these instructions.
http://bryancera.blogspot.com.au/2014/0 ... rints.html

Now apparently you can just use water as the solution that they cathode and anode get submerged in. Also it is possible to use a wallwart or batteries instead of buying a rectifier but I bought a rectifier off of ebay.

Charles
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Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: copper electroplating a 3d print

Postby Charles » Mon Oct 17, 2016 9:36 pm

pretty cool, thanks for the link to the details

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Mecha_Monster
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Re: copper electroplating a 3d print

Postby Mecha_Monster » Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:39 pm

That's an interesting idea. Your print looks much better than the one of the tutorial.
How do you feel the metal? is it well bonded to your print?
I wonder if graphite can also be mixed with Loctite sealant? I used to use it to smooth the surface of my PLA prints and bond parts.

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obfuscated
Posts: 77
Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2016 1:35 pm

Re: copper electroplating a 3d print

Postby obfuscated » Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:53 pm

Mecha_Monster wrote:That's an interesting idea. Your print looks much better than the one of the tutorial.
How do you feel the metal? is it well bonded to your print?
I wonder if graphite can also be mixed with Loctite sealant? I used to use it to smooth the surface of my PLA prints and bond parts.


Well my print has less detail and perhaps was a better print than the one in the tutorial.. in my next experiment I'm going to sand the object first to get it smooth.. I'm also thinking about acetone vapor smoothing.

My guess would be mixing the graphite with the sealant would make it less conductive which would be bad. What you'd want to do is to apply the sealant first. Or perhaps dip the PLA print in ABS that has been thinned with acetone.. then paint that with graphite acetone mix.

There is also copper paint which you can paint on the surface.. although this may not be as smooth as just the graphite which can be extremely thin.


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