In my casting class we've been using 3D prints quite a bit this semester. Some of the students chose to use them in our first project as patterns for sand casting and now many of the students are using 3D prints for our second project. One of my advanced students (Dee) just vacuum cast the rings above and then today Phoebe centrifugally cast the 3D printed heart and the fake flowers. The aluminum heart surface is so nice. The prints were made on my Ultimaker and I'm happy to report that I am really loving the updates to Cura and the Ultimaker print quality has been excellent. It's really "replaced" my Makerbot now that the support settings in Cura have gotten better. We've been mainly using ABS and we seem to be getting a bit of ash that sometimes gets trapped in the investment leaving us with a few pits or thin walls, but the less detailed prints have shown no signs of any trapped ash left behind by the ABS. I believe we can eliminate the ash by a good vacuum of the mold before pouring. I was really happy with our success today.
Again, in this course students are just integrating the technology where needed. I really haven't covered any modeling demos and students are just taking upon themselves to learn what they want in terms of software or utilizing Thingiverse to appropriate forms that they then can manipulate and add to with wax. I am handling all of the 3D printing of pieces in my office that will soon be converted to the DCRL (DCRL East Side Mountain Edition). I just need a good break this Christmas to be able to make the changes necessary. With great student progress and results, I get more and more excited to be here in Boone.