News and Events

Keep up to date with Steve Nurse's designs and 3d printing.

Wednesday 19 January 2022

The Killer Ap for all this stuff!


Scoping - Fairfield fly fishing ponds a bit shallow for model raft sailing.


Better! A pond in North Carlton. Testing a new tilting trike at the time, it is on the left.

Completing the tetrahedron- the red jig ensures the brown parts are at the correct angle. They are held on by the blue rubber band until gluing is complete.

Lower corner of raft. The holes in the cans are as high as possible. The ring pull is removed for flatness, and then the hole covered with gaffer tape. Water was pretty calm, the taping probably wasn't needed.

Final assembly was taping.

It works and

Sails away quite happily.


Selfie with cans icosahedron boat ...... thing.

Managed to take some ok .....

photos of it!


For a while, I have been building structures from drink cans (previous posts here, here, here, here, here, and here) for a few weeks now, and eventually worked out that most of the structures I've made could float and sail. I spent some of Monday scoping for sailing spots in the city, and a fountain and pond in North Carlton looked like the best bet.  

But by Tuesday I had reserved myself a trip to Aireys Inlet and decided to try it down there, and headed off today (Wednesday). There were a few last minute construction details, mainly with the tetrahedral raft. I 3d printed a jig to ensure can holders were correctly angled, and then glued them onto the cans. And finally I worked out that taping some of the cans together could be done last to simplify assembly.

The can-rafts (Kon-Tinnie? Kon Biri?) ready, I went to the Aireys Painkalac creek, taking one of the rafts at a time down.

The tetrahedron raft  worked well, and sailed quite quickly but I only got a few shots before swimming out to retrieve it. With the icosahedron it went much better. I swam out with the "thing", carrying a camera as well, and managed to get some good photos and a couple of videos. The videos are here and here, the first shows a spinifex like tumbling, and the second is up close and just shows floating.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this post. The models are put together using just one type of 3d printed part which I hope to put up on Thingiverse soon.


Steve Nurse

Update, Jan 21

After filming the big rolling raft a few days ago, I decided to have a go at filming the tetrahedron raft as well. I needed to leave Airey's Inlet, and the weather was getting warm, so a river swim before I got going was just the thing. I grabbed a bit of firewood to use as the camera deck and there was not much left to prepare. A pic is below, and the raft- camera video is on youtube here.


Monday 10 January 2022

Cans Cylinders









At some stage when making can sculptures, I realised that a couple of cans could be put together to make a cylinder, and the cylinders used as edges in polyhedra. As well, the lamp stem I'd already made could be a cylinder too, and compatible with the can cylinders.

The top sketch shows how I calculated the length of the plastic pipe to be cut, and pic 4 shows the pipe cutting. I stuck a tight fitting steel tube inside the plastic pipe during cutting with the pipe cutter. The plastic tube doesn't cut this way on its own as its too flexible. Pics 2, 3, 5 and 6 are all tetrahedra, with 5 and 6 including a pipe edge.  Cd's and plywood discs could be used to make these sorts of structures too.

Regards Steve Nurse

Update Jan 14

As per the pics below, I have made a third type of cylinder for the samplers, that is plywood discs separated by dowel. It was hard to put together, probably because its hard to get the half hinges alligned correctly on the cylinders. I plan to make a model boat next (The Kon - Tinnie?) which should be fairly easy. 

Till next time!



Cans Icosahedron



As i've done with CD's before, I have now worked my way through making all of the platonic solids by using the faces of beercans as sides. Its been a bit of fun, and my son Ewan took a few photos of me fooling around with it - "just not interesting enough!"

Each can has 3 half-hinges attached, and 20 of these add up to make the icosahedron. To start with, hair elastic did the holding, but later superglue was added. The half hinges need to be equispaced on the rims, otherwise assembly is impossible. 

To finish off, I designed a 3d printed hinge to adapt a plastic pipe to the assembly, and another part to anchor everything to a base. I had some fun with the base itself, cutting out the corner pads from within the base to leave some decorative holes. The piece I've made could make a lamp, but for the moment I'm trying it out with a few bike lights for effect.

Regards  Steve Nurse