DL-44 build (FAIL)

joeranger

Sr Member
I tried to make a working C02 .177 DL-44 as a present for my brother. I used a Legends C96 as a base and an Ebay 3d printed parts kit. Yeah, it was cheap but this was a novelty gift . 2 questions;

Are all 3d printed parts made of cheap brittle plastic? This gun broke during shipping. I obviously did not use a big enough box with enough packing material:( I just didn't realize how brittle is was...my bad.

How can I fix it? Can I buy just that one part somewhere?

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bobasfett

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
What a thoughtful gift. I'm sure there are better grades of 3D print materials but I will let others with more knowledge chime in on that. Although I think 3D printed items have their place, the scope bracket is not something I would have made of that material. Do to the nature of the assembly, and the distance from the scope end to the bracket, it is the weak link.

I'd recommend the blaster factory one next time. Great price for all metal (cast steel) and seems perfect for your purposes:

 

Vagabond Elf

Active Member
So, most forms of 3d printing build the part up in layers. This is what creates the ridged lines. The adhesion between the layer lines is usually the weakest part of a 3d print. Printing in larger layers is faster, but makes the layer lines more visible and the adhesion weaker. Using smaller layers makes the print stronger but takes longer.

The other thing to keep in mind, all 3d prints are basically hollow, but the printor can change how thick the walls are. From your picture, it looks like the walls aren't all that thick. Thicker walls are stronger, but of course take longer and use up more plastic.

And of course material makes a difference, but the print settings matter more, especially in a shape like that.

Whoever printed that part opted to do it in a way that made it fast, cheap, and easy to produce, but in the process made what is going to be the weakest portion of the part even weaker. A problem exacerbated by the fact that the original scope bracket was designed to be milled or cast, not 3d printed. I'm confident I could print that mount such that it would be a lot stronger, but it would probably take a couple days and use twice as much plastic.

In short: if you're buying a 3d printed part, my advice is to learn about the various settings and only buy from someone who will tell you what settings they're using, so you can have a decent idea of what you're getting.


Although... I will note that even a milled metal part would have been at risk of breakage if you shipped it unsupported like that. I don't know what the scope itself is made from, but if it's a real metal-and-glass scope that's a lot of mass pulling on some very thin struts; metal might not have snapped but I think there's a measurable change it would have bent. If it was me, I wouldn't put it in the post unless the foam came up high enough to fully support the scope.
 

joeranger

Sr Member
Yeah, bad packing on my part but it was in a custom wood case sitting on an inch of foam. surrounded by an inch of foam. . Completely, 1,000% protected on 5 sides;)
 

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thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Hey!

I came here to help because I know the feeling of an irreversible break or error. I'm a very shy, collected person, but everyone has their things and when a big screw-up happens that I can't go back from it hits me hard.

It's been said - 3D printed parts (from my point of view) are by nature... fragile. If you spend the money to print something solid and it's small, I can see it giving good competition to solid resin parts. Resin is used in the industry because it can take a beating, be machined, milled, drilled and tapped, and really just cracks or chips under high pressure. Something structural like the scope bracket is supposed to support another item, and has attachments on the side of another item.. bound to fail eventually. SO sorry it broke.... I've shipped blasters like this and even with metal I stuffed packing material between the scope and the gun in case it got pressured from the top.

Glad you got a metal mount! Don't be discouraged from cool gifts like this again, its honestly cooler and more meaningful getting something unique made by a friend.

PS slide that scope back so the windage knob rests against the scope rings, it'll look more familiar ;)
 

TazMan2000

Master Member
Not all 3D printed parts are weak. It may have survived, if the bracket was printed in a different orientation. The layer lines are always the weakest point. This is obviously a FDM print. You may be able to fix it by getting someone to print another bracket, properly, or with metal reinforcement like brass pins, but that will require a redesign of the STL.

If printing MSLA, resin generally is fragile, but you can get ABS type material that improves the strength. With MSLA, because of how the resin bonds with the other layers, the layers are not usually the weakest point.

3D metal printers are now more prevalent, and while a 3D metal printed part is stronger, it most likely won’t have the strength as something that was cast or machined, however, who knows what technology is around the corner for materials.

TazMan2000
 

chubsANDdoggers

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Look up SLS prints or more specifically HP’s Multi Jet Fusion printers (or MJF for short). They use a nylon material that is exceptionally strong. Much stronger I believe than most resin or FDM printers. Also much more expensive but the layer lines are pretty much nonexistent as well which is another positive. As others have said even metal can bend or break without proper packaging so there is that to consider as well. Anyhow good luck to u on your future builds. If you want to see some builds using MJF you can see a bunch here just as an FYI..

 

bobasfett

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Sorry have to disagree with comments about a metal mount being as susceptible to breaking or bending.

The original ANH DL44 was not handled with kid gloves and these parts survived just fine (Pawn Stars gun).

Also, different scope and mount design/materials but you can see what happened to the GK when it was mishandled/dropped. The scope tube bent.

Using the Blaster Factory mount with the original scope from the resin kit would mean the scope is now the weak link.
 

chubsANDdoggers

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
The original ANH DL44 was not handled with kid gloves and these parts survived just fine (Pawn Stars gun).

You do know that’s not the original ‘77 ANH dl-44 correct?? Scope and top rings yes but everything else.. not so much. This is why that auction is so dangerously misleading. People are going to believe it’s real.

With all respect if these builds are not packed correctly you can easily damage the prop. Regardless of material. Most common mistake with packing this hero is not taking the scope/mount off while shipping. Leads to metal bending and/or plastic breaking (as originally posted).
 

bobasfett

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
You do know that’s not the original ‘77 ANH dl-44 correct?? Scope and top rings yes but everything else.. not so much. This is why that auction is so dangerously misleading. People are going to believe it’s real.

With all respect if these builds are not packed correctly you can easily damage the prop. Regardless of material. Most common mistake with packing this hero is not taking the scope/mount off while shipping. Leads to metal bending and/or plastic breaking (as originally posted).

I know it is not the original gun. I have not kept up with that thread but thought the top bracket and scope were real. Regardless I stand by my statements.

I would enjoy seeing photos of all these bent metal brackets you speak of. If you put this in a box and not packed well, I can see resin and plastic breaking. Metal bracket bending? I think the scope is still the weak link. Also, look how the OP had it packed. No metal bracket would have been compromised. The print was crap.
 

chubsANDdoggers

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Sorry maybe I misunderstood you. You said the ANH blaster survived just fine. I was simply pointing out that it did not. In fact it’s stated that the mount itself was found in a drawer or somewhere mangled beyond repair. It was metal and it was also damaged..

The problem with 3d printing is the same with metal. Many different materials of each can be used and shouldn’t be lumped into one category. FDM printing can’t be compared to something like MJF printing for example. Just as an aluminum can’t be compared to steal. It’s not as basic and across the board as some might perceive is all. One is very much stronger than the other. It’s no comparison but regardless one should always proceed with caution and care when shipping is my simple advice.

Take the scope/mount off and wrap separately to be safe..
 

Too Much Garlic

Master Member
Okay, so the scope basically snapped off from the body. The fact that the break is clean and the print is hollow, just use a two-part resin like Aves Apoxie Sculpt, fill the holes, put in brass rods - test the fit first - into both holes in the section still attached to the gun and press the holes of the scope bracket down over it, hold it in place and let it harden over the next few hours. If needs be, just paint the split area with a similar paint used for the parts.

Easy fix.

Next time, don't buy printed parts on eBay. They are done cheap, poorly and quickly - not strong at all.
 

Too Much Garlic

Master Member
Just make sure the brass rod goes all the way down into the piece still attached to the gun and all the way up the piece holding the scope for maximum strength, as well as filling all the way to the bottom of the holes, so really push it up in there and remember to account for the brass rods, so the overspill isn't going to be too much. If you are not too skilled with this kind of fix, just do one part first - either the holes at the gun, fill it, put in the brass rods and let that harden... and then do the holes at the scope mount later.

All kinds of materials could have snapped during shipping, even if packaged properly. And sometimes damage adds character and history to a prop. It may not be perfect... but for the most part, it may make things more interesting.
 

bobasfett

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Sorry maybe I misunderstood you. You said the ANH blaster survived just fine. I was simply pointing out that it did not. In fact it’s stated that the mount itself was found in a drawer or somewhere mangled beyond repair. It was metal and it was also damaged..

The problem with 3d printing is the same with metal. Many different materials of each can be used and shouldn’t be lumped into one category. FDM printing can’t be compared to something like MJF printing for example. Just as an aluminum can’t be compared to steal. It’s not as basic and across the board as some might perceive is all. One is very much stronger than the other. It’s no comparison but regardless one should always proceed with caution and care when shipping is my simple advice.

Take the scope/mount off and wrap separately to be safe..
I’m a mechanical engineer and have been around the block a few times. I’m well aware of material differences, as well as differences between castings and forgings. I’ve also had things printed and purchased things printed, personally and for work although my experience with this medium is poor.

My example of the original ANH bracket was a poor choice but we have no idea what happened to it over the almost 40 years it has been around. We do have post production photos of the GK and there you can see the results of severe mishandling - bent scope. So I again stand by my statements that if his mount were metal in the first place it would have been perfectly fine.

I do agree with you that in general things can be damaged in transit if not packaged properly and also agree that if you arent going to do things the right way in that regard, best to remove it if there is a worry. But I 100% don’t agree with Vagabond Elf or anyone else that says a metal bracket (alum or steel) would bend or break with his packaging.
 

Vagabond Elf

Active Member
But I 100% don’t agree with Vagabond Elf or anyone else that says a metal bracket (alum or steel) would bend or break with his packaging.

I'll thank you to quote me accurately and not twist my words merely to make yourself seem correct.

I did most emphatically NOT say a metal bracket WOULD bend or break if packaged unsupported. I said it was AT RISK of breaking if packaged unsupported.

As a trained engineer, surely you appreciate the importance of reading something carefully, and paying close attention to nuance and detail. Even if you're not currently demonstrating much skill at that, I assume it's something you were taught at some point.

Obviously a metal mount would be much more durable than a plastic mount, no matter how carefully such a thing as 3d printed, but they aren't invulnerable. In my experience as the grandchild of Alberta rednecks, it doesn't take much of a drop to ruin a scope mount, either. No, my family has never dropped a DL-44 replica. Yes, my family HAS dropped any number of Mauser-action rifles, mostly with scopes attached, and yes, the scope broke first but many of the mounts were damaged too.

Anything sent through the mail is going to be subject to handling and abuse beyond the sender's control. Ensuring nothing in the package is left unsupported is always a good idea. The part of the prop that was surrounded by foam is fine, the part that was not is damaged, and the original poster has acknowledged my suggestion without showing signs of offence so I'm not sure why you even needed to stick your oar in.

By all means offer us the benefits of your professional knowledge, regarding the durability of certain materials or anything else you have experience with - but don't put words in my mouth just to make your argument seem stronger. It doesn't do that, it just makes it obvious you're not paying proper attention in the first place.
 

thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Fun little story, a friend of mine who used to be on here had an old DEC blaster put together, That's how we met, we each brought a prop to a coffee shop so we'd recognize each other, he whips this thing out of his car lol

*I do NOT RECOMMEND carrying this blaster around in a car, it was a funny moment thats all*

anyway, another time it fell out of his front seat, nose first, and the scope hit the ground dead on. The whole mount was twisted back and to the side. He gave it to me to repair it. A little heat and careful hammering and I put it back where it was supposed to be. You're not alone in blaster fails!
 

bobasfett

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I'll thank you to quote me accurately and not twist my words merely to make yourself seem correct.

I did most emphatically NOT say a metal bracket WOULD bend or break if packaged unsupported. I said it was AT RISK of breaking if packaged unsupported.

As a trained engineer, surely you appreciate the importance of reading something carefully, and paying close attention to nuance and detail. Even if you're not currently demonstrating much skill at that, I assume it's something you were taught at some point.

Obviously a metal mount would be much more durable than a plastic mount, no matter how carefully such a thing as 3d printed, but they aren't invulnerable. In my experience as the grandchild of Alberta rednecks, it doesn't take much of a drop to ruin a scope mount, either. No, my family has never dropped a DL-44 replica. Yes, my family HAS dropped any number of Mauser-action rifles, mostly with scopes attached, and yes, the scope broke first but many of the mounts were damaged too.

Anything sent through the mail is going to be subject to handling and abuse beyond the sender's control. Ensuring nothing in the package is left unsupported is always a good idea. The part of the prop that was surrounded by foam is fine, the part that was not is damaged, and the original poster has acknowledged my suggestion without showing signs of offence so I'm not sure why you even needed to stick your oar in.
By all means offer us the benefits of your professional knowledge, regarding the durability of certain materials or anything else you have experience with - but don't put words in my mouth just to make your argument seem stronger. It doesn't do that, it just makes it obvious you're not paying proper attention in the first place.

Here is what you said "Although... I will note that even a milled metal part would have been at risk of breakage if you shipped it unsupported like that". Sorry that you feel I misquoted you but again, I disagree with your statement 100%. A milled bracket would not have been at risk of breaking. Long paragraphs and passive aggresive knocks on my profession are BS as well.
 

joeranger

Sr Member
A lot to unpack here:)
Packaging: I used a box that was way too small but I was so eager to ship it. My brother has four boys so they would have broken it anyway though;)
Disassembly: I glued everything without screws to maintain it's functionality as a BB gun.
EBay: it was cheap for a reason
3D Parts: The other parts were fine for the project but the mount needed to be metal. Too much stress.
Scope: Thank you, I will move it closer on my next build. Oops.

and finally...
BlasterFactory: Nice work, really solid. EDIT: simple mistake, shipping second one immediately . Answered phone right away. Nice people.
 
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pengbuzz

Sr Member
I tried to make a working C02 .177 DL-44 as a present for my brother. I used a Legends C96 as a base and an Ebay 3d printed parts kit. Yeah, it was cheap but this was a novelty gift . 2 questions;

Are all 3d printed parts made of cheap brittle plastic? This gun broke during shipping. I obviously did not use a big enough box with enough packing material:( I just didn't realize how brittle is was...my bad.

How can I fix it? Can I buy just that one part somewhere?

View attachment 1600194 View attachment 1600195
I reccomend Devcon Plastic Welder (actually a 2 part adhesive); I use it in various stuff, and it will bond anything. The bond is very durable and will not crack, peel or release. Give it a try!
 

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