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 Post subject: Optimum fillet radii?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:04 am 
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Fillets are obviously crucial to not-catchy turning, and aesthetics. In my first design, my fillet radii were too small and it catches alot (it has since been fixed), what radii do you designers use?

There are 4 'categories' of fillets as far as I notice:

Fillets that are a radius of a concentric sphere in the shells design like these:

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Fillets that line the grips:

Image

Fillets that line the cut planes:

Image

And completely external fillets:

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What radii should be used for each kind? Any exceptions?

EDIT: I realised I missed out a couple more kinds, but those are not as important.

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 Post subject: Re: Optimum fillet radii?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:58 am 
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I cannot really comment on the "mech" fillets as I have only made very simple ones (3x3x3, Megaminx). As for the "external" ones, I have found that these are not too critical and depend mainly on aesthetics. If the fillets are large, then the puzzle will turn great, but the larger the fillet the smaller the "flat" surface you have for the sticker, and the gaps between the stickers will be bigger.

Also, if you apply the same fillet radius between faces with small angles between them (i.e. sharp corners) then more of the piece will disappear, which again will seriously affect the look of the puzzle. So generally, I apply a smaller radius to sharp edges.

"But what are the actual radii?" you ask. As usual "it depends". Larger pieces can take larger radii, so one value is not suitable for all. I start with 2mm, see how it looks, and use trial and error from there. I know this is not much help, but as I have said, these external fillets depend more on how you want the puzzle to look than some scientific formulae.

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 Post subject: Re: Optimum fillet radii?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 7:18 am 
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Thanks. I was actually intending to get a range of opinions, like a previous thread on tolerances.

I know Oskar and certain companies add huge fillets to large order cubes for aesthetics as well, and sometimes Oskar uses chamfers rather than fillets. Any advantage to this?

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 Post subject: Re: Optimum fillet radii?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 7:28 pm 
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In my experience, the ones that are most important when it comes to the turning quality of the puzzle are the radial fillets and the fillets on the edges between cut planes. I always make these as large as possible without interfering with the mechanism. If you have a tiny part that can't take a big fillet, giving it a 1mm (or even smaller, if necessary) fillet shouldn't be an issue. Otherwise, 2-3mm fillets on these edges are ideal.

For the fillets on the grips of the puzzle, using 1/2 of the shell thickness works fine (e.g. if it's a 2mm thick shell, give it 1mm fillets).

I can't think of any puzzles where the external fillets make a difference in turning quality. Like Gus said, it's more an issue of aesthetics, and how you want the stickers to look.

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