Posted 2 April 2017
No, this is not an April Fools prank – but an actual geek-type 3D printer project using 3DXTECH’s carbon fiber impregnated PETG filament.
A day or so ago I was preparing my morning coffee as usual, when I discovered the little plastic ‘milk pail handle’ handle on the coffee filter holder had somehow gotten broken, as shown in the following photos
So, since I hate defective products like this, and since I happened to have a 3D printer and some CF-PETG handy, I decided to see if I could 3D print a replacement. Designing the replacement in TinkerCad turned out to be pretty straightforward, using a rectangular cross-section for the handle rather than the original circular design. The two retainer tips are cylinder sections (actually they are the ends of the same cylinder – with the middle removed along with the center of the disk making up the handle. The TinkerCad design is shown in the following screenshots
After the usual 2-3 tries to get the printing parameters tuned up (seems they change slightly for every job), I got a very good print, as shown in the following photo
When installed on the coffee pot filter holder, it seemed to work very well – it allows me to pick up the holder by the ‘milk pail handle’ and it also stows away just like the original – yay!!
B3DP (Before 3D Printers), it would basically have been impossible to repair this part. Now, that’s not really a disaster, as it is perfectly feasible to use the holder forever without the little ‘milk pail handle’ but if you are a guy like me who hates defective equipment, this would have been a burr under my saddle every time I used the coffee pot. I might have been able to find a replacement part somewhere, at some exorbitant cost (probably more than the entire coffee brewer) with a 6 week delivery lag time, but that would just be a choice between two bad options; deal with a broken system every day, or just buy another brewer because of the failure of some 10-cent part 🙁
However, with my new 3D printer super power, the cost to repair is a few pennies of filament and a few hours of my time in my lab, which I love to do anyway – such a deal! 😉