The second part of a new polypanel system (the original system designed by Devin Montes). Combined with V3 Polypanels, these internal panels greatly strengthen structures and create new structural possibilities including honeycombs and cubic based frames.
Internal panels use an extra 'snap' connector to join in the middle of a standard joint, thus connecting three panels around an edge. A fourth panel can be joined around an axis by attaching internal panels inbetween standard panels. Using different internal and standard panels together, a cubic frame structure can be constructed in any size and shape.
The structure can be further reinforced with 'SJ' panels (Solid Joint/Centre Joint) which have extra connectors in the centre, combined with half panels for substantially stronger objects. There are also square and triangular brackets to locally reinforce polypanels.
I will soon release moving parts e.g. gears, wheels, pulleys etc. to this system which I have been working on for the last two years and expand it into an open construction kit I originally envisioned when publishing the 'Polypanel Shaft System' (now obsolete) for the polypanels competition two years ago.
Internal Panel Types
All the basic shapes including: Triangle, Square, Pentagon and Hexagon are included.
The Triangle, Pentagon and Hexagon panels are available in four types, ordered by increasing strength: Open, Solid, Vopen and Vsolid.
There are five types of internal square panel: A, B, C, D, E. They are useful in different situations or used together in larger structures.
All the square panels have an open and 'SJ' (Solid Joint) variant. The former is the standard open style of panel which is fast to print. The 'SJ' panels have extra connectors in the middle (like the Center Joint standard panels) which allow further reinforcement.
The internal A panel (black) is the most versatile panel. It generally can be used to join onto larger polypanel structures or on the surface of square frames.
The internal B panel (green) is useful for internal walls of square frames (including the 'SJ' variant and standard B half panels).
The internal C panel (red) is generally used in compact panel structures, including the 'floors' of square grids.
The internal D panel (silver) is useful for building into corners or for the top/bottom of square frames.
The internal E panel (black) has internal joints on all sides, useful for reinforcing square columns.
There are four internal half panels: A, B, C, D.
The half A panel is most useful for highly reinforced structures (green), but care must be taken to align the end snaps with adjacent panels. The B and D variants do not end snaps however. These half panels variants will fit for almost all situations.
Square Grid Frames
As seen in the images, these panels can be arranged into rigid frames. The assembly pattern is shown for a basic grid and can be expanded to any size, although the same structure can be built in many different ways using different panels and with different strengths.
The example shown uses 7 types of panel: S (standard), A, B, C, D, B(SJ), and Half-B (standard). There is a way to remove the need for the B panel from the grid, but this has a more complex internal pattern. It may seem complicated at first but becomes easier after playing around with the panels (and printing off many of the different types).
The reinforced cube structures can also be expanded to any size, but they are more difficult to build, both physically and mentally. Careful thought has to be put into the arrangement of the panels so everything lines up right. I will release more 'patterns' once I figure out a good way of laying them out. The basic open grid is fairly strong as is though; the 3x3 cube can hold my full bodyweight (approx 75kg/165lbs) so full reinforcement is not necessary except for very strong structures (the 2x2 reinforced cubes can also easily hold my bodyweight).
Occasionally an internal joint will be matched up to a single standard connector. In this situation they will not form a rigid joint since an internal joint can only snap onto an edge with two standard joints. In this situation the 'Stitch' can be used, which is essentially just a single connector. This will then allow the internal joint to rigidly connect (see pictures).
General tips for building with internal panels. It is best to join two standard connectors together first before adding the internal joint. The internal joints can be very rigid at first (as will most panels) but they will loosen up with time; I am thinking of ways to improve this.
The panels can be assembled and dissassembled with your hands, but I have found that a pair of long needlenose pliers are very helpful, particularly for taking apart rigid structures (see pictures).
I have included Fusion 360 files for all the panels (except the SJ variants of the square panels) so you can alter them yourself, excuse my messy constructions.
If you have any difficulty or suggestions for improvements let me know, thanks :).