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3D printing button?

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Eric, I've replaced several buttons much more easily than 3D printing, by buying a special plastic called Polymorph that you can order online or get downtown, for about $15 a kg.

It melts at 60º C, meaning that you dip it in very hot water to make it mouldable and drillable with a hot wire or drill. Roll out a suitable-diameter rod of it, cut it, drill it, etc.


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Hi Eric


we 3D print at work all the time so I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. I would recommend using PLA as it prints really well. All you will need is a 3D model which can be done simply on a free version of autocad fusion which is readily available


Cheers Ned

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I just picked up a 3d printer about a month ago. I haven't played my concertina enough to need a replacement button yet however. I don't think there'd be any problems with printing a button. If you are going to play with it outside a fair bit or in warmer temperatures I'd probably recommend PETG over PLA for the material as it holds up to the elements better. I haven't worked with PETG myself yet, but it's supposedly close to PLA in ease of printing but with higher temperatures.

Seems someone had the idea already though, so there is a 3d model already available.

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It might be easier to simply machine them from Delrin.  I had to replace the buttons on my concertina (I bought it in a condition where many of the metal buttons were worn down significantly.)  What I did was buy Delrin rods from McMaster-Carr, and mill them to shape with a Dremel tool.


To make the bottom peg of the button, I discovered a neat Dremel trick.  I set a Dremel tool in that dinky Dremel drill press that they sell, with a fat cylindrical grinding bit close to the drill press platform (a little less than one rod diameter away).  Then I'd take a few inches of Delrin rod, hold it firmly to the platform with both hands at the ends, and roll it firmly so that the middle of it rolls into/under the grinding bit.  By rolling it in, this mills the middle to a skinnier diameter, and I then cut it in the middle to produce two button blanks.


It took surprisingly little time to make a full set of replacement buttons this way, machined with great uniformity despite my grad student budget and my cheapo tools.

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