Accurately Painting 3D-Printed Objects By Dipping Them in Water

iStock.com/PongsakornJun
iStock.com/PongsakornJun

Image Credit: Screenshot via Youtube

How do you paint a weirdly shaped 3D-printed object with a complex pattern? Take it for a dip in the pool.

A new color technique pioneered by researchers at a computer graphics and visualization lab at Zhejiang University [PDF] involves dipping an object in water while coating it in a multi-colored film. This paints the object in one stroke with zebra stripes, leopard print, or whatever other pattern you might want.

Watch:

It builds on a process called hydrographic painting, which, while similar in concept, isn't terribly effective. The plastic film floated on top of the water, and it was meant to stretch across the dipped object. But it often went awry, creating an inconsistent splash of color or even tears in the paint.

Instead, computational hydrographic printing involves creating a 3D scan of the object (say, a mask) before it's lowered into the water. An algorithm takes into account the way that the plastic film will bend and distort as the object is lowered onto it by a robotic arm, drawing the pattern accordingly. The pattern is then printed out on a regular office printer and then placed on top of the pool of water. The result is a perfectly glued-on pattern, every time.

By dipping the object in the pool multiple times, you can even create a texture to the paint, as if it was painted by hand. (In case you needed to pass off some mass-produced 3D printed wares as homemade Etsy items.)

[h/t: Co.Design]

Wednesday’s Best Amazon Deals Include Computer Monitors, Plant-Based Protein Powder, and Blu-ray Sets

Amazon
Amazon
As a recurring feature, our team combs the web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, December 2. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

Love the Smell of Soda? Make Your Whole House Smell Like it With These Recycled Can Candles

716 Candle Co.
716 Candle Co.

You won't find candles made to smell like balsam fir, ocean breezes, or fresh linen from 716 Candle Co. Instead, the Etsy store specializes in scented candles reminiscent of newly opened cans of soda, and each product comes in a clever recycled can holder to match its fragrance.

As Delish reports, 716 Candle Co. sells candles inspired by dozen of soda brands. Whether you're a Coke or Pepsi person, the shop has a candle for you in both diet and regular varieties. Other sodas that have been transformed into kitschy decor include Sprite, Orange Crush, and 7Up.

716 Candle Co.

Every candle from the Etsy shop contains 100 percent soy wax made from American-grown soybeans. The holders are real recycled soda cans that have been hand-cut and smoothed around the edges.

Whether you need a gift for the soda fanatic in your life or you like to unwind to the scent of Wild Cherry Pepsi at the end of the day, you'll find what you're looking for from 716 Candle Co. You can browse their candle offerings today, with prices ranging from $10 to $15.

[h/t Delish]