I've always been fond of rubik style puzzles and had always planned on designing one of my own. I printed the cute Ozo 1x2x3 puzzle bear for my daught...er the other day, which she loved, but this created a problem for my boys. They wanted one, but wanted it to be a different animal. I have grown fond of being able to show my kids that 3D printing offers me the ability to create customized objects and toys, so I accepted the challenge. We went looking through thingiverse looking for animal models to start with while discussing what animal they wanted. We settled on the Rhino model by YahooJapan and I started working.
I imported it into Tinkercad along with the snap pin holes and started slicing and dicing.
After discussing the design with my boys, we settled on splitting up the legs to make the orientations more interesting. Being 5 and 9, their favorite part of playing with this puzzle is making it "smell its own butt".
Realizing that the legs would need support and that if you print the middle pieces with support, it would make for a fun time of cleaning out the holes, I decided to design some custom support for those pieces so that you do not need to use your slicer's support.
It turned out quite well. looks great and turns easily. As a twist (bad pun intended) we decided to rotate the way that the head is sliced.
3d model print parameters
Print one of each part. I printed the Lily versions with the included support for the middle pieces. You will need to add support when printing the ba...ck legs. I printed with 3 top, 2 bottom, 2 perimeters and 10% fill. I included regular parts and versions with lily pads in the corners to help keep it from warping. The custom support that I created for the legs on the middle pieces works quite well. It creates a clean print and comes off easily. And most importantly, it lets you support the legs without filling the holes with support. If you have a slicing software that lets you selectively support you models, you can use the no support versions. I find that Simplify3D works well at doing that. Craftware does it well also, but has not always been consistent on the slices I have tried with it. Once printed, clean up any rough edges. Cut off the lily pads if you used them (I did). Then test assemble the model without the pin and make sure that it turns well while holding it together. clean up anything that catches and make sure that all is good before using the snap pin to connect it. I found that it does not really want to come apart once it is assembled. Then share the fun with your animal loving puzzler friends!