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I want to 3D-print some parts that will be later joined together along a seam. When modeling these separate parts, what are some methods that work well with 3D-printed pieces? For example, if I were doing wood working, I might choose dowel and pin joints or mortise and tenon joints or glue overlapping pieces. What methods translate well into use with 3D-printed plastics? How does the answer change depending on the orientation of the joint along the printing direction?

1 Answer 1

One of my favorite techniques is to join pieces with screws, and include a tapered feature that helps align the parts. A single screw can give a very strong joint, that is well-aligned and won't twist. Another advantage is that such joints can be printed in any orientation, since the tapered feature can be designed with 45 degree angles.

Here is a cross-section example of such a joint:

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