Sunny Sahota

Fictiv Technical Applications Engineer, helping customers bridge the gap between design and manufacturing.

All articles from the author

Mechanical Design

iRobot Braava 380t Mopping Robot Teardown

Recently, we did a teardown of the iRobot® Braava® 380t Mopping Robot, to understand the different mechanical and manufacturing design elements that help to get you those squeaky-clean floors. Before we got started, we decided to take a step back and evaluate what features would make up a good mopping robot. The two items we […]

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Mechanical Design

The Engineer’s Guide to AC vs DC Motors

While electric motors serve vastly different purposes, their core function remains the same—to convert electrical energy into mechanical energy. Numerous articles highlight the characteristics of each unique motor on the market, but they can be simplified into two overarching categories: AC (alternating current) motors and DC (direct current) motors. Each type has its own pros […]

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New Product Introduction

Get Prepared for CES with These 5 Prototyping Tips

It’s December and while most people are giddy with the holidays upcoming, consumer electronic companies around the world are in crunch-time preparing prototypes for the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES). It can be a stressful time of year for engineers and designers, so here are a few prototyping tips to help you understand all your options […]

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Mechanical Design

Segway miniPRO Teardown

A while back, we tore down the now infamous hoverboard, with the intention of uncovering how the product was made so cheaply and easily by manufacturers large and small in China. For this teardown, we decided to go to the opposite end of the spectrum and see what changes when an experienced industry leader designs and […]

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Design for Manufacturability

Design Guidelines for Prototyping with PLA

Understanding Design for Manufacturing (DFM) is critical to a successful build, even at the 3D printing stage. The right design paired with the wrong 3D printed material will lead to underwhelming results. There are several 3D printing materials from which to choose that each utilize a unique build process, but PLA is a common choice, due to its widespread […]

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Mechanical Design

3D Printing to CNC Machining: When to Make the Switch

3D printing has penetrated its way into almost every industry. From automotive to fashion, it has undoubtedly improved the way companies develop products. However, long before 3D printing revolutionized prototyping, CNC (computer numerical control) machining dominated the manufacturing world. If you develop physical products, CNC machining is likely a part of your prototyping process. To […]

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Engineering

Power Racing Series Car Build Part 3: The Bananaghini on the Track

Fictiv spent several weeks collaborating with Mindtribe to build a $500 electric car, using the base of a Power Wheels Lamborghini to race at the Power Racing Series at the 2016 Bay Area Maker Faire. In Part 2 of our Power Racing Series, we wrapped up the vehicle and took our first practice laps. In […]

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Engineering

Power Racing Series Build Part 2

We spent several weeks working with Mindtribe to build a $500 electric car to race at the Power Racing Series at Maker Faire, using the base of a Power Wheels Lambo. The Power Racing Series is this amazing event where adults-who-still-want-to-be-kids dress up in crazy outfits and race their souped-up Power Wheels cars for moxie […]

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Manufacturing Processes

How to Get the Right Finish for VeroWhite 3D Printing Material

Depending on your visual model needs, you can choose from different finishing options for 3D printed parts. To make life easier, Fictiv always recommends printing parts that need any type of finishing work in a high resolution material, like VeroWhite or VeroBlack. People often try to cut costs by printing in a low resolution, hard, […]

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Engineering

Power Racing Series Build Part 1

Before the 2016 Bay Area Maker Faire, my inner-child set out on a goal to re-live the freedom I felt when I got my first car—a 25lb plastic, electric blue, Power Wheels Jeep. Those of you who have attended the Bay Area Maker Faire may have seen the awesome PPPRS races. PPPRS stands for Pow-Pow […]

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Mechanical Design

Hoverboard Teardown

By now, you’ve almost certainly seen a hoverboard out in the wild. While the current models still aren’t quite the quality of Marty McFly’s hoverboard (thanks, Doc!), it’s just as mesmerizing to see someone majestically gliding through the daily San Francisco sidewalk traffic. Not everyone feels the way I do, though—some find them dangerous (like the […]

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Mechanical Design

Metric vs Imperial Units: The Greatest One-Sided Debate of All Time

The Mars Climate Orbiter infamously disintegrated after its trajectory sent it too close to the planet’s atmosphere, due to a calculation error—an error that could have been avoided if everyone used the metric system. You might ask, “Well, why not have everyone use imperial units?”, to which I would respond: You might wonder why the […]

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Manufacturing Processes

How to Clean PolyJet Parts

A lot of hard work goes into making 3D printed parts shine once they come off the build bed. As revolutionary as 3D printing has been for hardware development, there’s still some manual labor that goes into every part. Here’s a quick tutorial that shows how we clean PolyJet parts fresh off the build bed […]

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Mechanical Design

How to Design Living Hinges

If you’ve worked with consumer electronics, you’ll have come across living hinges. They are found in a wide variety of components – clamshell packaging, attached bottle caps, and electronic cases, just to name a few. They are low cost, easy to manufacture, and have little wear or friction involved in operation — understandably a popular […]

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Manufacturing Processes

How to Select & Source the Right Materials

After the R&D stage in the hardware development lifecycle, you have a clear vision of what you’re building, the problem it solves, who the target user is, what other products are out there trying to solve the same problem (and how those products were made) and you’ve started iterating on the product design. A next […]

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Design for Manufacturability

The Fundamentals of Hardware Assembly Design

Designing parts for efficient product assembly is a primary hardware development consideration. Even if labor costs are a relatively small percentage of the final selling price, problems in assembly can generate tremendous costs, incur production delays, and result in suboptimal part quality. Since the largest financial impact in hardware development comes during the production phase […]

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Manufacturing Processes

Options for 3D Printing Clear Parts

When it comes to 3D printing clear parts, it’s important to understand the clarity options available to you. Depending on your design requirements, the clarity level can play an integral role in your design review. Here are 3 options for 3D printing clear parts to help you make the best material choice for your part. […]

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Manufacturing Processes

3D Printing Materials Overview

You can 3D print parts using many different types of materials. Here’s an overview of the most commonly used 3D printing materials that you can find on the Fictiv platform. All of them are great options for prototyping hardware. When you’ve decided which 3D printing material to use for your project, consider these 3 factors: […]

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Mechanical Design

3D Printing Technologies Overview

There are 4 main types of 3D printing technologies: FDM, SLS, SLA, and Polyjet. In this post, I’m going to outline the strengths and weaknesses of each 3D printing technology, to help you choose the best one for your prototyping needs. Picking the Right Technology Similar to picking the right material, understanding your technology options […]

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Mechanical Design

3D Printing Getting Started Guide

This quick start guide is designed to you help you become familiar with Fictiv’s online tools for 3D printing. Read on for a step-by-step guide to help you: Properly prepare your CAD files Export your files with the correct settings Upload your files to Fictiv Choose the right 3D printing material Step 1: Prepare Your CAD […]

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Fictiv Updates

How to Use Fictiv’s New Uploader

We have a brand new uploader and it’s going to make your life a lot easier — promise. Now, you can upload your files just once and get unlimited quotes for all variations of materials, colors, and production speeds. To help you get started, here’s a step-by-step guide on how the process works: Step 1: […]

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CAD Modeling

CAD File Formats and How to Export Them for 3D Printing

There are a lot of CAD (computer-aided design) file types out there, each with their own names, formats, and parameters. From STEP files, to STL files, to IGES, and more, it can be difficult to differentiate between them all. This post will help you understand the difference between these file types, and which file is best […]

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Mechanical Design

How to 3D Print Light Pipes

The advent of 3D-printable transparent materials has opened doors to new possibilities with rapid prototyping for optical applications. Now, we can consider how to use and manipulate light in 3D printed parts. Light pipes, sometimes referred to as light guides or light tubes, are physical components used to purposefully redirect or transport light from a […]

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Mechanical Design

How to Choose the Best Fasteners for 3D Printed Parts

We get a lot of questions on the best methods for fastening different 3D printed components. When prototyping hardware products, for example, you often need to make assembled structures that are more complicated than a single 3D printed component, like an electronics enclosure or robotic assembly. Other times, you may need to print components too […]

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Manufacturing Processes

4 Considerations to Help You Choose Between Additive and Subtractive Manufacturing Methods

Methods Overview There’s a telling quote attributed to the great Renaissance artist, poet, and subtractive manufacturer, Michelangelo. When asked how he created his masterpiece David from a large chunk of marble, he remarked that he simply “chipped away at all of the stone that doesn’t look like David.” As engineers and artists, before we can […]

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Engineering

List of CAD Software Programs

Designing 3D parts is tough, but with good software it become easier. Everyone has their favorite tool, and below we outline some of the most popular CAD programs. Or, prototyping on a budget, or have a quick fix to make? There’s lots of great free tools out there for creating and editing 3D models too. […]

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Design for Manufacturability

Design for Manufacturing Terms

Manufacturing is hard enough without knowing terms most manufacturers use. Here’s a quick resource to help you learn the most common terms around describing physical parts. DFM (Design For Manufacturing) Terms Undercut: In manufacturing, an undercut is a special type of recessed surface. In machining it refers to a recess in a corner or a piece of […]

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