OpenSCAD knots

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jsc
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OpenSCAD knots

Post by jsc » Sat May 10, 2014 4:20 am

A friend of mine just had his PhD thesis defense in mathematics, on some abstruse topic of knot theory. Fortuitously, recently on the OpenSCAD mailing list there was someone looking for help on generating smooth 3D curves for his web page that models knots. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to print a memento for the grand occasion, so I flipped through his thesis and found a pretty simple knot that has some importance in the history of knot theory, the Whitehead link (technically not a knot).

Printing in one piece was a pain, as there are only two tiny contact points on the bed and everything else needed massive support, with huge overhangs. I didn't have time to go in and slice it up properly for gluing, though, so I tried it, and it turned out rather well:
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knot-sm.jpg
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ednisley
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Re: OpenSCAD knots

Post by ednisley » Sat May 10, 2014 1:36 pm

That's the kind of thing you must print in one piece, just so you can say "It printed just like that!" when somebody picks it up at a show-n-tell session... then, later, you explain about support material.

Well done!

jsc
Posts: 1863
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:00 am

Re: OpenSCAD knots

Post by jsc » Sat May 10, 2014 1:58 pm

Thanks, Ed. It did get passed around and marveled at, and I did have the opportunity to explain about supports. Probably the only time I will ever get to drop "2-manifold" casually into a conversation without any further explanation required.

Toby
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Re: OpenSCAD knots

Post by Toby » Sat May 10, 2014 5:02 pm

That image takes me back 25 years to my days working in an NSF lab at the university of minnesota. We made a computer animated video on knots:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGLPbSMxSUM

The first part was done by me (up to the titles, plus the escher cats). Back then some of those image renders of knots probably took almost as long as it took you to 3D print one.

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