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Easier Fishing Lure Ribs or Rings in Fusion 360

Easier Fishing Lure Ribs or Rings in Fusion 360 1

Hey everybody! Today we’re going to hump into Fusion 360 and I’m going to show you how to add ribs, or rings, around fishing lures using a new technique I discovered. This technique is much easier than the previous techniques I’ve used so let’s hop into the computer.


So here’s one of the final results I got using this technique and I think it’s really cool. We’re going to be going over how you do this using the pipe command that is in the form menu over here. So we’ll be going over the basic technique I’ve covered in a previous video but less rambling this time. So we have just our normal and basic paddle tail model but this technique will work with any lure body that you want to use, it doesn’t really matter. Once you have your body in place here you want to go to the side profile of it and we’re going to create a new sketch which we’re going to create on the side plane.

Now we want to draw the lines that are going to represent the ribs or whatever features you want. So we’re going to start off with very basic lines just straight up and down. When you create the lines you want to make sure that you select above and below the body of the lure at the widest points. Now, you can draw all of these lines individually, but the way I'm going to do it since we’re just doing a straight line is I’m going to draw the line here. It doesn’t matter how far down it goes, just as long as it goes past. Then we’re going to create a rectangular pattern and we’re going to click and drag this out and then click and raise the number until it looks reasonable. Click OK and finish sketch.

lure in Fusion 360

So this area is basically where our ribs are going to be. Now the next thing we do is we’re going to create another sketch on the same exact plane and what we want to do is click create, go down to project include, and then project to surface. Now it’s going to ask us for a surface and we’re going to select our lure body, curves. We’re going to hit select and it’s easy to just click and drag from right to left and it will select them all and instead of closest point we want a long vector. Then we’re going to come over here and click the origin line that is going across left and right. You’ll see these red circles appear around your lure and that is where our pipes, or our ribs, are going to form. It’s a good way to check and make sure you’re doing everything correctly and to make sure those look right. After that, just click OK and click finish sketch.

making lure ribs in Fusion 360

So now for some reason Fusion 360 likes to leave these sketches on, but I’m going to go ahead and turn them off. You’ll see I have these pink lines that are my projections around my lure body. Now, if I was doing this the old way we would go to create pipe and then come over to click our size that we wanted and whether we wanted to cut. So you could cut out or join if we wanted to and do each one of those individually. That gets rather tedious with a larger bait so I’m going to show you the new technique. What we’re going to do today is we’re going to go to create form and then we create a pipe. This is a totally different pip command, it definitely has its pluses and minuses and we’re going to get into some great pluses in the next example. But right now, the biggest plus is I can click on one and by default it’s a 20 millimeter and a box pipe. You can make this whatever size you want, and then you want to click on the smooth display piece and that’s where you’re going to get the round pipe.

pipe technique in Fusion 360

Now you may be thinking, dude that’s the same as what we did last time, but the magic here is that I can take this path and click and drag all of them. That saves me tons of time and you don’t really need to change anything else here if you’re doing basic circles. You just click OK and you have all of your rings there. Now one thing this does is it creates a bunch of bodies but all I need to do is combine them together so I just click combine, I click my main body, hold down the shift key and click OK. We just want to make sure new components is not selected and keep tools is not selected since we don’t need those.


This is marginally better than the way we used to do it but let me show you how I found this technique and what drove me to this particular method. I wanted to do angled ribs so something along these lines where you have a rectangular pattern like we did before. We have to select both the top and bottom so make sure you do that. I did about eight of them which I then moved down to kind of the center there and clicked on project include, project to surface and select both the top and the bottom again.

curved ribs in Fusion 360

Now this is where the traditional pipe command fails. If I select both the top and bottom, I can’t select both of these and if I click on OK you’ll see we have this kind of weird edge. Depending on how much angle you have in your shape, this will actually separate and won’t even be together. So with the pipe command in the form editor, not only can we have a cool pattern but it’ll look really natural too. By the way, you have to click on these before you can change this to circles, it’s annoying but you can see this intersection here is much more natural and has a nice curve which is what you want. We finish form and then we just join our body back just like we did before.

aligned ribs in Fusion 360


If we want to use a curve, fit spline in this case, and we’re going to create another rectangular pattern on both of these curves. So I just pulled it until it basically lined up and instead of extent, I’m going to turn it to spacing and that’s going to be my distance. Then I just add my copies and then they’re going to be together then I just click OK and finish sketch. I won’t bother you with the project, we already know how to do that.

joined ribs in Fusion 360

So now you see you have this different pattern, kind of likes scales. If I use a traditional pipe command here and hit join, I can only select one of these at a time and get these weird, not so great results. If we do our new pipe technique, it gets really cool. So we’re going to create a pipe and I like to select one and turn the circle thing on and then elect them all. You get a much more natural joining curve and you can make this as complicated as you want. I will say, the more lines and curves that you add, the slower Fusion 360 will go since it has to create more and more objects.

Now there is a downside to this, you can run into and will probably create invalid geometry that you will need to go and fix. It can be a bit of a problem but you just have to fix it. When that happens, Fusion 360 will give you an error and so click return and we’re just going to select the section that’s wrong and delete it. Then we can recreate it and we will create singular bodies here to see if that helps which did end up fixing it. So it will create non-conformant geometry but there’s a way around that.


I hope you find that pipe technique super simple. If you want to see a longer video about how I’ve added details to my lures, you can find it here. All of my tutorials about making molds, etc. are in this playlist here.


Take Care.

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Organic Fishing Lure Scales with Blender Help Me!

Organic Fishing Lure Scales with Blender Help Me! 2

What’s up everybody! Today we are going to try and produce some organic looking scales using a combination of Fusion 360 and Blender. Let’s go!

I’ve been on a quest to produce natural looking scales for my molds for quite some time now and it’s led me all over the place. I want to give you a quick update in the hopes that someone smarter than me will be able to take this process and refine it a bit better while I sit around and struggle with blender. But first let me overview the process I’m at right now and show you the results I’m getting.

Exporting mold to Blender

So you produce the mold in Fusion 360 and then what you want to do is export each half of the mold as an OBJ file and high refinement. This is key as I’ve found, you don’t want anything less than high when you’re going back and forth because the blender is high. Once you have your OBJ file exported, you need to open up Blender. Now, I don’t know Blender much at all, I am like a bind squire looking for a nut in there, it’s crazy how complicated this software is. I wanted to share this with you because if you know Blender better than I do, you’ll be able to get far better results.

Here’s the basic idea, you load your OBJ into Blender then you go into sculpt mode and the first thing you want to do is remesh. You’ll see you mold looking like of like garbage right now so if you just click over in the little tool icon, go down to remesh and just click remesh it’ll look like nothing is happening for awhile and then all of a sudden your mold will look normal again. That is key because I was trying to do it before figuring out remesh and it just looked really bad and was not useful at all.

Adding scale image to Blender

The next thing you want to do is use a texture, specifically a scale texture. Textures, in this case, are black and white images so you can just go into Google and search for scale texture, scale displacement, scale height map, etc. and find black and white scale patters. That’s what I’m using in this demonstration and I’ve linked it here. I’m using this one because it is a little more organic, not just rows and rows of the same scales because I think it’s the most like a normal fish since they don’t have perfect scales most of the time. Once you have your image, go to the texture button which is the little checkerboard over on the right-hand side. Click new, open and then find your image and you’re good. Again, I can’t give you a complete tutorial on using textures in Blender, there’s several videos out there and I have a playlist linked to them here. These are the videos I’ve found to be helpful in this process so you can watch the same ones I did or you can look up your own Blender texture tutorial videos. Just be careful when you’re looking for videos, Blender is rapidly under development, the current version is 2.9 and they’re about to come out with 3.0 so if see any Blender tutorials just make sure it’s the latest version. All the version are pretty similar, but if you go older than 2.8 it gets different and very confusing.

Adding scales on Blender


So now you have your texture in here and you need to do something with it. So if you go back and clock on these little tool icons here you see you can go down to texture and you’ll want to choose stencil. Now when you choose stencil, if you take your mouse and go back into the main viewport, you’ll see your stencil appear over here on the bottom left corner. If you hold the right mouse button and clock and hold the right mouse button you can drag the stencil over and put it over the area you want to be in. If you need to rotate it as we do here, I hold down the control key, right click and then move the mouse around. You can rotate it into the position you want it, you can scale it up or down if you hold down the shift key and right click the mouse. Once you have your stencil in the place you want it to be, select the draw brush and what you want to do now is change the strength of the brush which you can do if you click in the upper left at the very top. There you’ll see this strength icon and just click on that to change it. I like to use a .2 and this allows for you to kind of roll your brush over the texture. How much it’s going to imprint this texture into the model is higher than this number, the higher the number the steeper the gradient and the more strength it has. Obviously, you don’t want to deform your mold greatly with your scales, you want a nice light touch for the most part. I like to start at .2 and as I brush it over more it’ll get higher and higher which is the tricky and artistic part of this process. Once you click .2 you can change your brush diameter in the same place, by strength. You can just click on it and type in a number but I also found you can click the F key and then move your scroll wheel up and down to change the size as well, then click the left mouse button to set it. I found that to be helpful but again, there are several tutorials over Blender.


Printing mold from Blender

Now you’re ready to start putting your pattern into place. You just click the left mouse button and drag and paint over the area that you want to have your scale pattern with. Again, this is the part that gets tricky as you want to keep it away from the plat parts of your mold if you can and obviously jeep it away from any other parts of the mold that you don’t want scales on. I believe if you want to make this process easier, you would use masking which I haven’t gotten into yet but I’m sure you can find some masking Blender tutorials that would be useful for this. Masking is basically just covering up an area of your model to where it doesn’t get the stencil when you put your mouse over it. Again, it would be super useful and I’m sure you can find a tutorial on it. Once you’re satisfied with your scale result, the last thing you want to do is you wanted to remesh again. Now I’m not 100% sure this is required but I didn’t remesh once and I got a model back out without my scales so I think it’s very important to do. You’ll click on the little toolbox up here, go down to remesh and just click remesh. You don’t have to change any of the settings.

Blender scale results

Once that is done, you’re ready to export it. You’ll just click on the file, export STL, save it to where you normally save it and then you’re good to go. Now you want to obviously do this with the other side of the mold as well so you just have to repeat the process. You can actually bring them both in at the same time if you want to and just hit the little eyeball here to turn one off and on. Doing this is how you get some better symmetry, but it’s up to you. Personally, I like that one side has a different pattern than the other but that’s just me. I like what I have so now all I have to do is print. To do that, all you have to do is load it into whatever slicer you want, in my case I’m using CHITUBOX and load it in and you can see the pretty scale patter is in the model so it’ll come out in the print which is exactly what you want. Hit print and look at the results, they’re pretty killer.


I hope you found that useful, guys! Again, I’ve linked all of the tutorials I’ve watched on Blender and if you want to see how I make the initial molds in Fusion 360 I have a full playlist here.



Take care and Tight Lines

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Quest For Shiny Lures – Part 2 Flawless Victory!

Quest For Shiny Lures - Part 2 Flawless Victory! 3

Hey guys! Welcome back to part two of making your resin molds super shiny. As soon as I finished with part one, where I discovered that painting on the Siraya Tech resin onto the mold cavity produced extremely shiny results, I figured that there had to be a better way to do this. I knew I definitely didn’t want to paint all of my individual mold cavities like some resin Bob Ross- ain’t nobody got time for that! As soon as I published that first video, I came outside and looked at one of my newest molds on the printer and it immediately hit me. The mold already has a nice thin layer of uncured resin on it, I wonder if I can use this resin to produce a shiny layer.

A couple of quick thins about my print settings. I’ve noticed that moving to a .04 layer line and about a two second exposure for my sculpt resin, that is heated, produces really great results. The other thing I’ve done is add a light off delay Chitubox. Using Chitubox 1.9 basic (which is their free version) you're going to need to upgrade your your firmware to the latest version if you have an Epax E10 printer like me. Links to all of that here.

settings in lure making program

Once you get Chitubox installed and you can see my settings here. You can use these on any slicer. I think the one thing that I have noticed with Chitubox 1.9 is the rest after retract setting is much easier to use than what it’s normally called, which is a light off delay which involves a lot of math to figure out. This setting, you just plug it in and I have mine at one second and it made a huge difference in the quality of my print. I wanted to share that with you guys because getting the best quality prints is the key to getting this finish. If you have a print that is overexposed it becomes grainy and not as tight which makes this method more difficult and does not produce great results.

So seeing that nice and shiny coat of uncured resin on my mold cavity made me think that there has to be a way that I can utilize this. What I found out over the course of three or four molds is what you want to do is take your mold off of the build plate, get some paper towels and rub the top part of the mold NOT the cavity. You set top edge and all around it with the paper towel to remove as much uncured resin as possible so that what you’re left with is a thin coat of uncured resin inside the mold cavity but the rest of the mold doesn’t have any uncured resin on it or if it does it’s in very small amounts. What will happen is if you hit this with a UV flashlight it cures a very nice, shiny coat if resub inside your mold cavity. If you have any other uncured resin inside the mold, it is likely to get cured in this process and will cause you problems.

curing a lure with a UV flashlight

So things you want to keep an eye out for is if you have tail cavities or any very fine detail that you have, you want to get the resin out of those crevices. This can be an extensive process when you have a lot of details so you might just want to go with the painting method instead of this one. This method works fantastically on molds with wide areas that you just want nice and shiny.

So you hit it with that UV flashlight again and I just hold it close and run it around the mold for about five to ten seconds total just to set it. Then, you wash it like you would normally do, I use denatured alcohol for my sculpt then I just swish it around and wipe it off and let it dry. You want to get it completely dry before you cure it. You can cure it as you normally would, I use a curing chamber but you can use whatever you normally use it doesn’t really matter. Cure if for about twenty-five minutes which is recommended for sculpt and you’re done! You have a nice, shiny mold! We can check out what it looks like when they get out, as you can see it’s very shiny and I think it’s even more shiny than the painted on resin because this is a much more uniform coat of uncured resin before you actually cure it.

shiny resin lure

Now I did run into a few problems using this technique. As I mentioned before, details and holes, specifically paddle tail, can get too much resin in there that hasn’t drained and you can’t wash it before this. So if you hit it with the UV light it’s going to cure in there and cause all kinds of problems. You can try to cover this area by gently trying to flush it out, but it’s still an issue. The second issue I ran into is sometimes there’s just a little bit of stuff in the uncured resin and it could be a little piece that flaked off or a hair or any number of things. You just have to keep a watchful eye out for those and pull them out with some tweezers or another small tool. You can always come back with a brush and smooth it out, you just don’t want to disturb the overall uniform look of this coat of uncured resin.

If you missed part one, the link is right here and if you want to see my 3D printed lure videos they’re in a playlist linked right here.


Take Care – Tight Lines

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Quest for Shiny Lures – Part 1 The Trials

Quest for Shiny Lures - Part 1 The Trials 4

All right guys! So after my last video where I compared a CNC mold to a resin 3D printed mold, the only thing that was better in the CNC mold was the lure which was a little but, well a lot, more shiny. So I set out on a quest to get my resin 3D printed molds as shinny as CNC. Let’s go see how I did.

All right so I decided to try to make my molds as shiny as a CNC aluminum mold and I set out to use some stuff that I’ve seen used in the past on other molds like Plaster of Paris molds and things I’ve seen used in resin 3D printers to repair surfaces that I thought would be worth a shot. So I’m using the same fiddle fin mold I’ve used before and what I’m going t do is apply three different spray paints, some worm oil and some sculpt resin (the same resin I use to 3D print the mold). Let’s see how it works.

CNC mold and resin mold side by side

So the spray paints I’m using are a high heat black and a high heat aluminum (just because I thought it’d be cool to have aluminum) and an enamel that looked really shiny when I saw it at the store. So I simply spray painted these on in mask-off areas. Next up was the sculpt resin. This is a pretty simple technique as well, I simply poured some resin out of the vat, placed it in a little cup, used a brush and brushed it into the mold cavity itself. Then, I hit it with the UV flashlight to set it, just like your printer works. Then I threw it in my wash and cure and cured it for about five minutes. It doesn’t really need a full cure but of course you can do a full cure I just don’t think it needs that long since it’s a very thin coat. That’s the secret to resin, very thin coats. I try to do the same thing with the spray paints as well but I didn’t prime them I just shot a coat or two so I could get coverage since saving the details over the shine was my main priority. I don’t think making it shiny for the sake of shiny is important, the details are.

Last but not least, right before I shot this bad boy I threw some worm oil into the cavity and spread it around with my finger. This was not a great technique at all, it probably would have been better to use a brush and kind of brush a thin coat in there. There’s one thing I noticed while I was doing all of these which is my resin 3D mild was not as smooth as I thought it should be. I was getting this kind of fuzzy texture, which is the best way to describe it. It wasn’t fuzzy exactly but definitely not nice and clean. So I did some research and I’ll have the results of my findings in my next video so if you want to see these awesome findings make sure you subscribe.

man making shiny lures using a mold

So I just grab some re-melts, grab my puck of what I call galaxy which is Dead-On Plastix Salt Water, Dead-On Plastix Black with glitter. I think it looks really cool, I thought the black would bring out the shine of the glitter a bit. I chopped all that up, threw it in the microwave and shot it in the two molds that I had and here are the results.

So first off, when I first cracked the molds open I thought the enamel looked spectacular. Then, when I went to touch it I realized that the enamel paint had come off and it was on the lures everywhere so I don’t think it could handle the temperatures, which I shot at about 320 Fahrenheit I think. Obviously, not a great result.

The two high heat paints weren’t really any more shiny than the resin mold was originally so not a good result. The worm oil is interesting, it certainly is shiny but also picked up these odd deformities here and there. I think too heavy of a coat kind of pooled it up in certain spots and caused an issue but it is shiny so I’ll give it that. But by far, the most spectacular result was the sculpt resin that I painted inside the mold cavity. Look at this bad boy, the one on the top here with the root beer and gold flake is the CNC from the original video and the black one here is the resin mold with the Siraya Tech Sculpt painted in there and cured. I think it’s more shiny than the CNC mold.

shiny lures side by side So the great thing about this technique with the sculpt resin is it’s the same exact material the mold is made out of so it will last as long as the mold will last which is a long time. So far, I’m on 120 shots with one mold and it’s still going strong, no damage, no deformations or anything like that. The only real downside is obviously it’s an extra process after you print your mold, you then have to paint in the cavities and cure it again. I'm probably not going to do that because for me shiny is not that exciting, not that worth the extra time and effort. But if shiny is worth the extra time and effort for you, this is how you get it done.

So all my tutorials and videos on 3D printing fishing lures and molds are right here.


Take care everybody- Tight lines