Dividing/splitting a model for 3d printing

I have been using Shapr3D for creating objects for 3D printing. It’s great to be able to create or import objects and then export as an .stl file straight to the printer! I have a job to print a huge bolt (16" dia X 48" length) that I need to split into two sections for printing. My printer can handle the 16" diameter on the bed but I can only print 26" on the Z axis. I would like to split the bolt into two 24" sections that would fit on my print bed. It would be ideal to have some sort of registration guides like mortise/tenon or even a visual reference. Can you help me out?!?!

Welcome to the Forum.
This is just one way that you could use S3D to form a M&T Joint:

To follow this make a copy of your Bolt.
Be aware that this will increase the length of one portion by the length of the Tenon.
By positioning the Die the extra length could of be split so the each portion is increased by half the Tenon length.
The ‘cut’ could of course be made on the plain section if that exists, on your Bolt, and it is convenient?
The Bolts shown are only M10 because that is my standard and there is little point in Scaling up for this purpose.

The Yellow Die/whatever you want to call it, is used in Tools > Subtract to Subtract from one of your bolts.
This will leave the Head/Top portion of the Bolt with a Tenon extension.
This modified Bolt is used to Subtract from your second Bolt, ensure that this time the Keep Original [top left] is switched on.

This will leave both portions of the Bolt ‘assembled’.
It was not necessary to show the Bottom portion, but why not? :sunglasses:

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I think Gelphyn’s suggestion is a nice simple way to split and ‘key’ the two bolt halves together. It will certainly do the the job. For what it’s worth, here’s another way. This approach takes a few more steps but it maintains concentricity.


Pardon my stupidity
This is what I get for jumping
in the middle of a conversation.
Are you making plastic bolts on

a 3D printer? If you are why not put parting line where the threads meet the shoulder of the bolt. Then glue and dowel the pieces together.

Dave P.

I have to print the threaded part in at least 2 pieces. There’s 48 inches of thread but my printer is only 26" on the Z axis. I do plan to attach the head as you describe. Thanks for the input!

Thanks Gelphyn! I am fairly green to Shapr3D, but I think I can figure that out…here goes!

The beauty of using the MO of @TigerMike is that if you are really tight on Printer Space you would be working with only 48".
By forming the first Hexagon Hole deliberately off centre it would prevent the possibility of misaligning the thread due to inadvertent rotation.
Placing the Hex Key in it’s hole and Subtracting both the Top Bolt portion and the Hex Key from the copy Bolt is a good option to maintain alignment.
Please tell us how you get on. Happy S3Ding :sunglasses:
PS. I will modify the image to improve clarity

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Excellent point to provide a fail-safe assembly by going off-center. Here’s a variation where I left the hex plug centered and increased the face of one flat of the hex to guarantee a one-way fit. This is how I would split the part and do the 3D print. (I exaggerated the flat for clarity.) Thanks Stan!


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Correct assembly is absolutely assured with a Pin that will only fit when everything is in the correct position.
Supper job Mike.
It is good to see demonstrations of the very many and various ways that S3D can be utilised.
Also great to see how various aspects develop and improve during discussions like this.