Frequently Asked Questions and Information on 3D Printed Sidchrome Replacement Inserts

Rather than answering these questions repeatedly on the various product pages I have collated the info here. As more questions get asked I’ll add answers to this page.

Can you make the inserts exactly the same as the vintage Sidchrome ones?

No – beyond the fact that I wouldn’t be allowed to just copy their stuff, the 3D printing process is very different to that which Sidchrome used to make their yellow inserts. The printed replacements I make are a block rather than being empty underneath, which should hopefully help with their longevity and robustness. The colour will not be an exact match as the yellow PETG filament available from Australian manufacturers is not an exact match to Sidchrome’s yellow, and in itself varies in shade a reasonable amount.

Other things like the sockets all having their own individual partition rather than rattling against one another and the metal box can change where things need to be located compared to the stock setup (i.e. sometimes they may need to be slightly staggered rather than in a straight line, etc).

My insert is a slightly different colour part-way up, or is not the exact shade as shown in the photo! What’s with that?

Two things – The rolls of filament used to make these are either 300 metres or 1 kilometer long, and the colour can vary from the start to the end of the roll – sometimes notably. Between different rolls and batches the difference in yellow can be more pronounced, and sometimes when one roll runs out it’s replacement is a noticeably different shade. For inserts which are multi-part due to the width required (e.g. there’s a left and right half) I do try to make sure that the same roll is used for the top part so that it looks as consistent as possible when filled with tools.

In short, they’ll be yellow but I can’t get the exact shade to be the same every time due to the supplied plastic not being 100% consistent.

What’s the lead time on getting one made?

Typically less than two weeks, but in some cases it may be more depending on filament availability and workload. If you need to know what the expected timeframe is drop me a line on the contact page first.

What are they made out of?

ABS filament, which is heat resistant to about 80 degrees Celsius. I tried using the cheaper PLA but it warped badly in the heat found in typical Australian workshops through summer, where ABS has held up just fine. It’s impact resistant and has proven to be pretty durable.

Can you make an insert that isn’t listed for sale?

As it stands I’m not taking on new designs.

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