Matt's RV-8 Project



Matt Dralle's RV-8 Project
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Date:  3-29-2015
Number of Hours:  1.00
Manual Reference:  
Brief Description:  Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs - Part 01

Well, if you happen to mount the sliding part of the canopy a little bit too high, you end up having trouble getting the windshield to fit down around the rollbar as shown in the plans. I had this problem mostly on the sides on RV-8 Version 1.0 and so I just made some standoffs from 5/16" tube and it all worked fine. On RV-8 Version 2.0, though, the natural spot for the windshield was quite a bit higher all the way around. I painstakingly made 5/16" spacers all the way around in for the 13 screws that tap into the roll bar, each at a custom length. But the more I looked at those little skinny standoffs the more I worried about the small surface area that was pressing on the Plexiglass and the potential for cracking down the road.

About a year ago, I bought a sweet MakerBot 3D printer for another project along with some 3D CAD software called Rhinoceros. I hadn't really made anything useful with the printer yet, nor had I really dug into the 3D CAD software to learn it. So, this seemed like it might be an opportunity. I spent a couple of evenings playing with the 3D CAD software and in no time I had a sweet little standoff laid out. At first I just made it a standard "tube" about .5" in diameter. Then I thought, hum, what if I cut a scallop out of the bottom such that it would fit nicely with the roll bar. Another evening at the 3D CAD and, wa-la! Then I decided that it would probably look better if I expanded the diameter of the standoff to a full 1" which would give about 1/8" of and inch on either side of the 1 1/4" roll bar. I printed one out and was amazed at how awesome it worked! Since I had the dimensions of all 13 spacers from the original 5/16" metal spacers I'd made, I just used the CAD to trim each one to the exact length necessary. 12.5 hours of printing on the MakerBot 3D printer later and I had a nice set of 13 custom standoffs! I went out and trial fit the whole thing together and was amazed at how well it fit and even more important, how cool it looked!! Once all 13 were in plac
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Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs

Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs

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Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs

Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs

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Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs

Custom 3D Printed Windshield Standoffs

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