Simple Keychain Tool

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About: Just an ordinary person who loves #thinking and #tinkering

Just got a 3D printer early this year, Creality Ender 3. It works like a charm out of the box. After one month testing, a friend of mine asking if I could take a printing service job. Well, why not? I am a beginner in 3D modelling, but you can just pick a model from the World Wide Web and I print it for you, yes. All he had to pay is the filament price and coffee (for the time spent on this project).

Two hundreds of keychain in various forms which he is using as gifts. There were also many combinations of keychain type in this project that I need to attached and detached the rings and the chains.

I simply use my nails to attach/detach the rings but hundreds of them? I won't risk the pain on my fingers and nails. Using some other tools like tweezers is handy but doing that hundreds of times I think I would stab into my fingers several times >.< oh.. no...

Then I built this simple ring to kill all the risks. Yes, I am Lord of the Ring ...

Step 1: The Ring

I designed mine with FreeCAD, complex tools built by enthusiasts for free, but here I will show you how to do it in TinkerCAD which is much simpler and also free.

  1. Create a solid cylinder a little larger than your index finger size. Here I make a 24 mm in diameter and the height is 10 mm.
  2. Create a hollow cylinder at the size of your index finger and place it in the center of the solid cylinder. This hollow cylinder is the size of the first section of your index finger. Mine is 20 mm so I get a 2 mm wall for the ring and that is strong enough.
  3. Click on the solid cylinder. By holding the shift key, click on the hollow cylinder so now you are selecting both objects.
  4. Click on the icon-group at the right top of the page to join the objects as one.

Step 2: The Pad

Add a rectangle pad on the side of the ring (a solid box), approximately 2 mm pop out from the surface of the ring.

Step 3: The Gap and the Blade

  1. Add a 3 mm x 2 mm x 2 mm hollow rectangle (hollow box) and place it at one side of The Pad as in the picture. This gap is used to hold the chain link or O-ring of keychain.
  2. Select The Pad and The Gap (multiple select by holding shift key) and click on the icon-group to join them.
  3. Create a solid triangle which is called roof on Tinkercad. Resize and place it horizontally aligned with The Gap. I will call this triangle The Blade. This triangle has a 2 mm wide at its bottom (stick to the pad) and sharp point on its top and this is where we put the ring into open position.
  4. Multiple select The Blade and The Pad-Gap and click icon-group.
  5. Lastly select The Pad-Gap-Blade and The Ring and click icon-group.

Step 4: How to Use

After you get it printed, now what? How to use it?

Picture #1 : Detaching the chain.

  1. Put the chain/O-ring on the left of The Gap.
  2. Stab the ring of keychain on The Blade.
  3. Turn the ring clockwise (according to the picture and my right-handed version :D )

Picture #2 : Attaching the chain.

  1. Put the chain/O-ring on the right of The Gap.
  2. Stab the ring on The Blade.
  3. Turn the ring clockwise (again, my version, right-handed).

Every tool needs practices to master. Once you get used to it, you will do it faster and faster and the most important thing is avoiding the pain on your nails. The pointy blade will be worn out but the 2 mm base of The Blade will serve you for long. I make a curvy edges with FreeCAD tool called fillet with Part Module which has the similar simple building tool like TinkerCAD.

Get it on Thingiverse : thing:3479153.

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    29 Discussions

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    charger38rt

    5 weeks ago

    I have never used fingerails, i always push key into between rings.

    3 replies
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    chienlinecharger38rt

    Reply 5 weeks ago

    Yes for inserting. My initial problem was removing the chain from the ring (-.-")

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    TomF157chienline

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    I Always Just Use My
    Small Pocket Knife It Locks
    Just Be Careful ...

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    chienlineTomF157

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    Avoid using sharp objects because they risk your fingers. Better use pen-tip, paperclip or almost anything around, just avoid sharp ones (^_^ " )

    I was working on hundreds of them, so I just made one (I think) convenient enough to get my work done :D

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    StringGoddess

    4 weeks ago

    (Weak fingernails here)
    I really like the simplicity, and I'm very impressed that this was your first 3D design.

    1 reply
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    chienlineStringGoddess

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    Not really my first design. I have several since the printer arrived and I started learning 3D modelling. This is my very first design : Converter Holder Phone Stand Keychain. It holds a micro USB to Type C converter. I need this because I sometimes forget to bring my phone charger and Type C is still considered rare over here, then I need this converter with me all the time ^_^
    Minimal phone stand for waiting time in restaurants. Keychain means it stays with me all the time :D

    I do not publish this because there are numerous converter size and shape out there and this build only holds certain shape of converter. I will file it in Instructables later though ;)

    I also design retainer clip to hold my fat-midrange-speakers on A-pillars in my car. Not holding forever (not strong enough) on bumpy rides but they hold longer than those I found in the market and they got rid of Minions in the car :DD

    DSC_2236.JPGDSC_2491.JPGDSCPDC_0003_BURST20181229101137716_COVER.JPG
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    ElectroFrank

    4 weeks ago

    I think this would make a very good general purpose spudger.
    Consider creating a Ring Spudger Set with various shaped tips for opening phones etc ?

    1 reply
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    chienlineElectroFrank

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    Maybe one day. I have several dead phones in my drawer :D

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    dragon fllyer

    5 weeks ago

    That's a very elegant solution, although an ordinary paper clip remover works fine for occasional use...

    1 reply
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    chienlinedragon fllyer

    Reply 5 weeks ago

    Yeah, do it elegantly :D
    Actually my initial design was starship look-alike. I was thinking of simply:
    hook : the O-ring/chain
    stab : the ring on the blade
    turn : turn the ring

    I don't have much time to tweak to get a precise hook position, so I made a simple one to finish my keychain project first. This build is open for modification :D

    previousVersion.jpg
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    swtracey7

    5 weeks ago

    I think for someone new to 3D printing you have done well. And it is a great idea.

    1 reply
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    chienlinecharger38rt

    Reply 5 weeks ago

    Not much spare time, but just can't stop thinking :D
    Thanks :)

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    bmohr

    5 weeks ago

    I think this is an ingenious solution. Great problem-solving.

    1 reply
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    Mayank Tidke

    Question 5 weeks ago

    Your work was nice and easy. I really liked it but i want to know something that how did you get a do-follow link on this platform??

    1 answer
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    bmohrMayank Tidke

    Answer 5 weeks ago

    If you click on the author's name it will take you to his profile. There is a +Follow button. You click on that and it will feature them in your feed. HTH

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    Oldbear

    5 weeks ago

    That tool alone, due to the lack of pain from doing keyrings the old way, is worth the price of a 3D printer.

    1 reply
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    chienlineOldbear

    Reply 5 weeks ago

    Not suggesting to purchase 3D printer for this tiny tool. I use 1g of filament which costs less than 1 cent and 10 minutes printing time. If someone need this they can just find any 3d printer around the neighborhood and I bet they will print one for free or give you a grin if you pay a dollar.

    This is the reason I purchased a 3d printer, print anything that solve my problems. I just love thinking and tinkering :)

    About the keychain project, it worth 10 rolls of filaments and I only used no more than 1/3 for each roll. So, the rest are now free or I can make more money from them to pay my printer off ;)

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