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2015/08/07

German student Sergej Bekauv designs very cool 3D printed Triforce kite

The Zelda video game franchise has featured some of the most amazing video games around and has entertained people for decades, so it’s hardly surprising that some makers have already 3D printed amazing tributes for it. Remember this awesome 3D printed Master Sword? However, student Sergej Bekauv, who is studying product design in Kassel, Germany, has 3D printed one of the most original tributes we’ve seen so far: a 3D printed Triforce kite, referring to the iconic symbol that is key to the plot of most of the Zelda franchise.

As the product design student explains to 3ders.org, this cool kite was designed as an entry into the recently closed Thingiverse Challenge Catch the Wind, that completely revolves around harnessing wind energy in a 3D printed creation. ‘As a huge fan of Thingiverse and of 3D-printing I discovered one of the five challenges. Catch the wind. One windy day I decided to flew a kite which I had also made myself. There I remembered the challenge and suddenly had the idea to create/design my own 3D-Printed kite,’ he explains. And what would be more cool than inserting a Zelda reference along the way?

As Sergej explained, this kite was given an extra dimension by being transformable. ‘As a child, the assembling and dismantling of a kite really bothered me and the gameplay was reduced,’ he says, so he made this a kit flexible, rather than rigid. Drawing up some designs and making some paper models, he eventually decided on using a clever 3D printable hinge he found on Thingiverse. For design itself he largely relied on Rhino3D 5.0 for Mac, which happened to be available as a free trial that week.

3D printing itself took place on a CTC-3D-Printer he recently purchased with a friend. Throughout the entire process, Sergej spent about two to three days of 3D printing, experimenting (including building a smaller test frame) and assembly. The final kit consists of an impressive 27 pieces, and can be found here. ‘For the glue I recommend 2 components epoxy based glue for a strong and flexible connections,’ he adds. To this 3D printed kit, he added a gold and silver rescue sheet that functions as the sailcloth of the kite. ‘It is thin, light and stylish in the sun. You can buy one in every pharmacy house for little money,’ he explains. All this was assembled with narrow double-sided tape, with a very thin kite rope being added for the user.

But obviously the real question is: how well does it fly. While it definitely works, it does depend on the strength of the wind, Sergej admits. ‘The kite needs a steady and not too strong wind. If that is the case, it flies beautifully and increases as long as the cord is enough. Everything is wind dependent,’ he tells us.

While it will take some time before the competition results are in, it would not surprise us at all if this cool kite receives quite a bit of attention from the judges. Sergej, meanwhile, is already moving on to bigger versions of the kite. ‘My dream is to print the whole kite at once directly on film!. With a Printer that has a big enough building platform. For this purpose I have already made several attempts: The filament stick to the silver side, so that the kite would be ready to fly right after Printing!’ he tells us. We will obviously hear more from him in the near future.  

Printing directly onto the sail.