Design a Las Vegas Hotel (or Anything Else Sin City-Related) For This Month's 3D Printing Challenge

By Kat Hannaford on at

CES is the most-circled week on any tech nerd's calendar, but Ballmer on a pogo-stick, it's a lot of hard work for us tech bloggers! Want to know what takes the same amount of time your average tech-blogger takes to queue for the Sony conference? Designing your very own 3D model, that's what.

For this month's 3D Printing Challenge, we'd like to see entries related somehow to Las Vegas, the city of sin. Whether you fancy creating your best Elvis figurine; one of Siegfried & Roy's big cats, or just your interpretation of one of Las Vegas' famous hotels, it's up to you.

Like our previous 3D Printing Challenges, the winner will not only get a Tokyo Flash watch of their choosing; they'll also get a 3D-printed model of their design, for keepsies. Take a look at the superb craftmanship (or craftmachineship) that went into making the 3D-printed sleigh and ape.


The Challenge

After giving you the challenge of designing a figurine, and then a high-tech sleigh for Father Christmas, we now want you to try your hand at designing something Las Vegas-inspired. Exactly what you design is up to you, but here are some reminders about Las Vegas: 1.) It's a sprawling metropolis in the arid desert. 2.) It's famous for its casinos; neon lights, and ageing rockers that put up camp in expensive hotels for months on end. 3.) The busiest week of the year is always the CES trade show, followed on the heels by the AVN show. (Don't click that link if you're at work!)


The Technique

You don't need to spend an arm and a leg on CAD (computer-aided design) software. In fact, 3DPrintUK has a good list of free software you can download and use. We suggest using Google SketchUp, for ease of use, but it's up to you which you pick.


The Rules

1.) The maximum height of your model should be 150mm, with the maximum model size at 80MB. Minimum detail must be 0.3mm.
2.) Characters can be rigid, or having moving parts. If you include a moving part, please use a ball-in-socket type joint, with a 0.5mm gap between the moving parts.
3.) To enter, you must upload your entry to 3DPrintUK's website here by the 30th of January, with your 3D model (.stl file format preferred); a render/screenshot, and a short description of your model. If you also have a blog/website you'd like us to link to when we publish the gallery of renders (and show off the winner's creation), please do include that with your submission.
4.) The submission must be your own creation.
5.) You can enter as many times per competition as you'd like.
6.) All 3D models will be added to 3DPrintUK's online shop, where readers have the ability to request and buy their own copy of the model. Entrants can choose not to sell their models if preferred, though 3DPrintUK will of course give you a percentage of the profit.
7.) 3DPrintUK also reserves the right to use any entrants' models in promo pics for their business, if needed.
8.) You must be a resident of the UK.

Best of luck! We'll be running a 3D printing challenge every month with 3DPrintUK, so if you miss out on submitting your entry before the 30th of January, check back here on the 7th of February 2012 for the next month's theme.


The Freebies

We like you; we really do! Which is why 3DPrintUK would like to offer entrants of the 3D printing challenge a 20 per cent discount voucher for their first 3D printed object purchase. To request the discount code, contact Nick at 3DPrintUK here.

Image Credit: Las Vegas from Shutterstock.