3D printed fabric

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3D fabric test 1.jpg
3d fabric test 2.jpg

I was thinking about printing on tulle, then about just printing tulle, but while thinking about weaves and structures of fabric, I remembered that knit fabric has at it's basics a very simple structure that could may be used in making elastic, bendable surfaces with 3D printing. I started by drawing some test loops by hand, tracing them to vector by inkscape and extruding the sketch into a 3D object in Fusion360. I printed a couple of the strings and tried to assemble them to form the knit, and while it kind of worked and bended in a nice way, the structure didn't lay very flat. I wanted to make some better loops for further tests, so I sketched a line of loops in Fusion360 and continued my tests.


part of the sketch and printed loops
The loops are really quick to print, around two minutes each, but assembling them takes some time and patience, at least for me. To make the result bend in every direction, every second row of loops has to be knit and every other purled, else the knit side only bends concave ant the purled side convex.