The 3D printing industry has dozens of 3D model marketplaces at this point, many of them trying to set themselves apart by putting their own spin on the business model. One of the most unique, and successful in terms of product quality, is My Mini Factory. The marketplace was started by iMakr, one of the first and most successful brick and mortar 3D printer retail stores. But rather than just launch a clone of Shapeways or Thingiverse, My Mini Factory is really more of a social network with downloadable 3D printable models.
All of the 3D models are free, however you do need to be registered with My Mini Factory, and there are tip options so you can support the 3D artists that you like. While their model inventory may not rival some of the other 3D model marketplaces, they have a rather strict curation process that has insured that all of their models are high quality, and guaranteed completely 3D printable. That is a promise that no one else has really been willing to make. That commitment to quality and finding some of the best 3D modellers around shows in their virtually unrivalled collection of 3D printable props, costumes and unique housewares.
The most recent addition to their inventory is a spectacular, life-sized Gjallahorn Rocket Launcher from the popular videogame Destiny. The online first person shooter is part co-op game and part MMO and requires players to build up experience points to earn new, powerful and exotic weapons like the Gjallahorn. The impressive rocket launcher replica was designed by My Mini Factory designer Matthew Clarke. This is the first model that he designed specifically for them, but based on the quality it most certainly won’t be his last.
“I was given an .stl file extracted from the game files, but I only really used that file as a size reference since it was not suitable at all for 3D printing it would have taken so long to clean it up to be suitable it was easier to just start from scratch. My Design skills are from a game art background, So I followed the workflow I’m used to. I created a rather basic base mesh for each component in MODO Indie, before exporting everything into Zbrush to apply all the wolf and filigree details. I then used a mixture of Zbrush and Meshmixer to optimize and further cut a lot pieces to make everything print ready,” Clarke told us when we asked about his design process.
The entire project took him about four solid days to model and design. In addition to creating an authentic and detailed replica, Clarke also designed a reloading mechanism that mimics the rocket launcher’s in game movements. Before he uploaded his final design to My Mini Factory, he 3D printed a scaled down version at 33% to make sure everything printed correctly, and fit together properly. Clarke made sure to make the Gjallahorn model printable without any rafts or support structures so the parts needed very little post processing work.
Once everything was tested and verified, the model was uploaded to My Mini Factory who 3D printed it at full size on an Ultimaker 2. The entire build is made up of 55 individual parts that Clarke made sure were designed to slot together snugly and glued. All of the parts took about 180 hours to print, and the final dimensions of the rocket launcher are 55 inches long by 19 inches tall by 6 inches wide.
When you download the 3D model to print your own, it will include a simple to follow slideshow that will walk you through constructing the rocket launcher. My Mini Factory suggests that the larger parts be printed at 0.2mm layer height with a 5% infill. Any smaller or delicate parts should increase the infill up to about 15% for added durability. If you have used My Mini Factory in the past or designed your own Destiny exotic weapons then tell us about your experience on our 3D Printable Gjallahorn Rocket Launcher forum at 3DPB.com.