Beyond the blocks: modeling a space plane for 3D printing in Tinkercad

When people think about modeling rockets and space ships in Tinkercad, they can be forgiven for thinking that all you can do is stick a cone shape on top of a cylinder, and call it a day - but they're wrong! Tinkercad can do a lot more.

Tinkercad has a very powerful engine under the hood, and with some creativity and ingenuity, you can make great looking models that rival those from other 3D modeling packages - and do it fast, for free and in your browser.

Keep reading and follow along the Instructable if you want to learn more.

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Glow-in-the-Dark Rocket Mobile with 123D and Tinkercad

We've been thinking about rockets and spaceships this week at 123D and we had some cool glow-in-the-dark filament for a Makerbot Rep2, so naturally: GLOW IN THE DARK SPACESHIPS!

The models came directly from the 123Dapp.com gallery, and the planets, end caps and filament points I quickly modeled in Tinkercad. Because the rockets were taller than would fit on a Makerbot, I imported them into MeshMixer to chop them in half witht the Slice tool. Slicing them also allowed for printing without support material.  With a little Krazy Glue, you get more size options.

If you want to make this yourself, you can try downloading more and different rockets. We've collected together a bunch of really varied rocket designs. ( <- click to see the collection and download!)

The trickiest part of a mobile is (perhaps obvious) is the balancing of all the elements - both physically and visually.  I printed a couple different sizes of rockets and planets, with varying infills so that I would have options when I started assembling it.  Only after printing the last rocket did I realize I could have just modeled the eyelets, but there you have it.

In total, the project cost about $15 in parts and materials: monofilament, eyelets, dowels and krazy glue. 

 

This is a perfect weekend project - and the glow-in-the-dark filament is available from Makerbot.  See the whole project here on 123dapp.com.  What are you making for SPAC3D?

The Blood Moon – Tonight!

Eerie name for a blog post, right? Well have no fear, it all comes back to our theme of the month - space! Tonight those of us on Earth will play witness to a full lunar eclipse, affectionately nicknamed "The Blood Moon" due to the reddish-orange color the moon will take on just past 3am Eastern. 

This moon marks the first of four total eclipses that will conclude in September 2015, a phenomenon known as a tetrad. We hope to see you out there gazing skyward, hoping to uncover the mysteries of the universe while using the rare event as an opportunity to say words like "umbra," and to make use of all the awesome moon and moon-related models living in the 123D gallery

For more information on where you can view this stellar event (see what we did there?), check out this site.

Simulate space capsule re-entry with Autodesk 123D

Right now everyone is getting excited about space - with Mars at its brightest last night, and a lunar eclipse coming up next week, it's hard to not look up at the sky and wonder how you too can explore the universe. Here at the 123D secret headquarters, we are also excited about everything astronomical, so we put together a project that explores the basic concepts behind the not-so-basic practice of re-entry to Earth. To do so, we need to understand flow and pressure around a space capsule coming back to Earth (yay, science!).

Looking at our suite of apps, we wanted to give you something mobile, free, and easy. This led us to putting together a project using iOS Design and ForceEffect Flow, which enables you to simulate the airflow around an object – all on an iPad.

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