Oct 13, 2016 | By Andre

3D printing has been tied to the hobbyist culture since low-cost filament based 3D printers started hitting the market around five years ago. Considering the doors 3D printing opens by turning digital files into physical objects, I doubt anyone is all that surprised.

Props from popular video games such as Fallout’s Pip-Boy 3000 to all manner of cosplay accessories have been bubbling about online for some time and there’s no reason to believe this will change.

Take the Lúcio character from the popular video game Overwatch for example. He has a really big gun and 3D printing enthusiasts around the world have been doing their best to recreate in all its glory for some time now.

3D printing and design enthusiast Simone Fontana seems to have taken things one step further by integrating a fully functional speaker into his original design (first produced and shared early in 2016).

It all started after he contacted Adafruit to see if they would send all the necessary essentials to integrate the speakers, followed by sourcing lots of PLA plastic from FormFutura and then the very slow piece by piece process of 3D printing his gun (in parts) on his Ultimaker. He estimates roughly 80 - 100 hours of printing went into his model alone so it’s not something you can whip out in a day unless you have a big 3D printer and some risky printing habits (high speed, low layer height and infill).

Once all the 3D printing was complete, the hard work truly began. He spent hours sanding the parts smooth, gluing the parts carefully, filling any gaps, cleaning away the dust and coating it with an epoxy cure.

From that point, more sanding, spray priming, still more sanding and ultimately spray painting all the desired colours and wow, what an effort but the job still wasn't finished.

Setting up the electronic components provided by Adafruit required soldering, careful assembly using velcro strips and then finally, you have a fully audible Lúcio Overwatch gun.

And while not all of the design files are available for free like many hobbyist based designs, they can be had very easily by visiting Simone’s Patreon site and contributing towards his continued efforts. I say continued because he’s actually been at it for some time now. His 3D printed Overwatch Tracer Gun released earlier in 2016 is in itself a beautiful thing.

What's more, Simone is as ever keen to get others to try this model themselves, and you can find a very detailed tutorial on Instructables here.

So whether you are a fan of video games or cosplay in general, it seems 3D printing there along for the ride for the foreseeable future that’s for sure.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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