Utilized my Prusa I3 3D printer to print a tank/crawler body parts I used a PHA/PLA filament from PrintInZ.com
To this: Just keep reading to see the finished product. This was my main reason for purchasing a 3D printer: so I could stop using Lego plates/bricks, hack saws, drill press etc., and produce a more finished product. Lets begin shall we.
Start printing the battery plate. It will be slung low beneath the tank’s metallic base plate between the tank’s tracks as seen in these pictures. In the last picture you can see it placement relative to the drive motors. Note the spacing provided for 3 battery packs (not shown here). They will power the Pi2, the servo motors, LED headlights, cooling fan, and the track motors.
Start of the chassis base plate. This plate will “sit” on the metallic base plate and be separated by 4×2 spacers. This will cause the plate to be elevated and provide for cable storage from the Pi2 to the batteries. The two cut outs are for the Pi2 USB power connector (the smaller of the two) and for routing the other cables for motors, video cameras etc.
Here is the chassis base plate installed. It is elevated from the chassis base plate seen in the large cut out by the spacers noted earlier and shown in the following pictures.
The Pi2 with two motor HATs attached is mounted using 4 small nylon standoffs. Other brass standoffs are in place to receive other parts.
A print of the video camera’s/power switch base plate. The “box” will fit onto the base plate and support the servos with camera as well as house two rocker switches for the track motors and servos.
Here is a bad print of the box. The box shown has caved in edges on the 4 top corners. I neglected to turn on the printer’s object fan so the soft plastic with the additional weight of extruded layers caused the box to buckle inward. I went ahead with this part at this point in the build to see how the rest of the parts would fit with the understanding that I would have to reprint the part later.The second picture show a large cut out for routing wires from the various components to the housing that will cover the Pi2 and its motor HATs.The third picture is the “lid” for the video camera box. It is drilled to accepts my servo motor mount (the large round hole with 4 orbiting smaller holes, a square cutout to route cables from the camera, servos, and 4 small holes to secure the lid to the 4 brass standoffs seen earlier.The third picture shows the loosely assembled box with servo camera assembly in place.
This begins the print of the Pi2 stack cover. It will slip of the Pi2 and its motor HATs. There are two cutouts: one accommodates the Pi2’s USB/ethernet connectors and the other allows cables from the video stack to pass into the Pi2. There is also a “lift” on two sides to allow for vertical airflow for cooling. In the second picture you can see a large hole with 4 orbiting holes. This is to support a small 5 V DC fan to help evacuate heat build up.
Here is how it will fit.
Printing the skirts: two side skirts, one front skirt, and one rear skirt.
two side skirts(interchangeable) front skirt with headlight cutouts. LED headlights in place. Starting to wire.
Side skirts installed. Batteries loosely placed. Getting a feel for how to run wires, etc.
Pi2 and video stack covers in place. Getting a feel for how it will look.
starting to wire. First with the headlights.
Most wires in place. Note that two black rocker switches have been installed in the video stack. The connect power from the servo and track motors to their respective motor HATs.
Static testing of track motors and servos. Note the tank is elevated off of its tracks.