Digital Kit Design » FichtenFoo’s Cantankerous Anglerfish-Shaped Submersible

Customers loved the Octopus Submersible that I released for my November Patreon so much that I decided to create another submersible for December. This time I pulled the Anglerfish from the long list of kit ideas I have on my whiteboard. It’s a well-known fish due to the light dangling in front of its gaping maw, so I figured it would also make for a cool steampunk fish-shaped submersible.

To keep with the aesthetic, I used a scrolled lamp post beam and an old-fashioned lantern design for the light portion. Because customers would probably want to light the lantern with an LED, I left the lamp portion inside separate and created both hollow and solid arms. I’m concerned that the hollow one will be difficult to print however since the square beam is only 3mm wide, meaning the hole and walls are only 1mm thick. Since I just released this a few days ago, I’m not sure if anyone has attempted it yet.

The mouth was another area of concern. Because the anglerfish has such little eyes, they didn’t work well as a main porthole. The mouth however is huge and the teeth I decided would work well as a window-frame giving the anglerfish a very large area for passengers to look out of. Coupled with the lantern, it’s likely used primarily to have a great view underneath the ocean deep. The issue however is that clear is difficult with 3D printing. While smaller portholes can be replaced with plastic or glass analogs, this large curvy window could not. So I provided both a whole window with the frame merged to the glass as well as separated glass and frame files. This should allow builders to polish the glass nicely before inserting it into the frame.

On my original two resin/photoetch fish kits, the fins were thin photoetch brass. That was not going to work for a fully 3D printed kit and the fins with their details would be more difficult to hand-cut from cardstock or thin polystyrene plastic for the customer. So I made the fins as thin as I felt I could (1mm) and recommend customers sand the ends liberally to taper them a bit. If only they could be injection plastic, they could be thin and tapered, but alas, we work with what we have access to.

The Anglerfish-Shaped Submersible was designed as a digital kit using Autodesk Fusion 360. Due to the rush of constantly designing new monthly content, I have not been able to assemble or clean the one print I’ve made of it, however more than a few customers have built and painted their own. I designed and optimized this kit to be resin-printed in 1/35 scale to match my other hand-sculpted Steampunk subs and ornithopters. I always consider the intended scale/print-size when designing to maximize what can be done to make sure all of the details are crisp and not too thin or thick visually.

The Anglerfish-Shaped Submersible was available to my upper-tier FichtenFoo Patreon subscribers as part of my monthly digital-kit drops during December 2021. The files were also added to the Industria Mechanika shop as a retail-priced digital kit product. You can purchase the digital-kit files complete with instructions and print your own Anglerfish-Shaped Submersible here.

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