An Introduction to Custom Minis

Custom Minis is a new company thriving to meet the demands of our customers by creating customizable miniatures through the use of 3D and Rapid Prototyping.

Custom Minis specializes in creating custom bits and models for a variety of games and hobbies. With the creation of advanced technology we can create almost any design our customers could ever dream of and can create a physical piece that you can then use to play with.

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Materials

Welcome to Custom Minis.  I've had a couple questions over the last few days about the materials that are used to create the miniatures for Custom Minis.  While everything is explained very elaborately on the Shapeways website I thought I would also give a small run down of the materials I've chosen and why.

Frosted Detail and Frost Ultra Detail

© Shapeways

The most common material that will be used for Custom Minis bits and miniatures will be the Frosted Ultra Detail material.  At $4.39 a cubic cm, this material will be used for small bits and pieces because it contains the most detail, about to reach minimum detail levels of .1 mm, twice the detail level of the technology only a month ago.

While I've not had the chance to stress test this material yet I can tell you that it's not going to fall apart in your hand and can take the weight of a certain 8th edition hardcover book balanced on it.  For those living in hotter regions, Shapeways says that it is heatproof to 80 degrees Celsius and 176 degrees Fahrenheit.

White, Strong & Flexible

White, Strong & Flexible - Unpolished Left vs. Polished Right
© Shapeways

The other material Custom Minis makes use of is the White, Strong & Flexible material.  While not able to reach the detail level of the Frosted Ultra Detail, this material is still able to reach .2 mm.  It is considerably cheaper for producing larger objects and they have just released a new Polished finish to the material that should remove the texture I had been receiving on earlier test prints.

This material is very strong.  For the Dual Mech Guns pictured in the Gallery it was required for the connecting hole in the model to be widened by about a mm.  Using my trusty exacto I was making no progress.  Instead I pulled out the drill and the material had a consistency and strength about twice that of plastic and resin, compared to when I have used my drill on those material.

Shapeways has also posted on their website that the material is heatproof to 80 degrees Celsius and 176 degrees Fahrenheit. So there should be little fear of these melting in your car.

If you have any questions about Custom Minis, the designs or the process I use feel free to ask and I'll be more then happy to answer them.


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