torsdag den 27. november 2014

Ultimaker original

Guess who will be making an Ultimaker?

That's right, most of the hardware is on the way. I still need the lasercut box, two 12 mm smooth rods. But other than that it is mostly paid for. And I can say it wasn't as expensive as you'd think. I'll update when I receive the parts, and will be covering the build on this blog.

tirsdag den 21. oktober 2014

Up and running

It lights up like a Christmas tree...

Notice how the wires are all messy. I've got to shorten those and mount the PSU on the side and fix that.
I've yet to find some suitable end stop holders (you'd think the extend of the RepRap project you'd be able to find such, but you'd be wrong). I have to design some, but I wanted to print so I adjusted the xyz axis to 0 manually. It's printing!
On the first four tries the acceleration proved to be way too high in Marlin. After adjusting these, I got this:

Notice the temporary cardboard fan duct ;). I'll have to design a proper one as well. I'm really happy with how the print came out, usually I hear people spending hours to get to the point where I am, so I consider myself lucky. Regardless, attempts at printing some more shows I have some blockage or jam in the hot end. Reading the e3d forum, this appears to be a somewhat common problem and might be fixed by either drilling out the nozzle, cleaning the hot end of plastic, tinkering with the cooling of the hot end or using better quality PLA. 

I don't have more filament to play with, so I have ordered some black and green PLA from the guys at

Main assembly

Most of the assembly has been completed. I made a light frame from curtain aluminium extrusion and eBay LED chains.  Fixed it with a couple of aluminium brackets that I made. I sand blasted some acrylic to diffuse the light.
I'm also using a 40mm ring light on my hot end. With both of these upgrades it's easy to see what I'm printing as well as the compactness of the layers. It's really helpful. I printed a case for the LCD on top of the frame.

As I don't want to use both an allen key AND a wrench when levelling the bed, I made some bumpers to hold the nuts.

The extruder is a modified version of Kuro's extruder on thingiverse. I made it fit a quick coupling that was bought along with the PTFE tube. I really like that I can use it for 1.75mm and 3mm as I an exchange the coupling.

Some protection for the heat bed cables came in handy. This is the 7*7mm size

The e3d hot end mount I designed for Prusa i3 with mount for 40mm ring light (seen in mirror) and mount for 30mm fan. A 5015s fan can be added in the front as well.

Getting messy:

onsdag den 20. august 2014

Y-carriage motor mount

The original y-motor mount for Prusa i3 looked flimsy, as the motor is only fastened on two of the screw holes. I decided to make one in 10mm thick aluminium. I did this by making a design in SketchUp, exporting the measurements and printing out a template with accurate dimensions.

 The template was spray glued onto the aluminium stock.
 Holes were centerpunched, then predrilled and drilled. I used a 25mm HSS end mill for the large hole. Unfortunately the template fell off in the process, but luckily the holes were all predrilled so the locations were accurate, and I printed out a few so I could stick on another template.

I milled out a 20mm channel to allow for a belt drive, although it wound up not being neccesary. Looks nice though.

 Finally, milling the outer dimensions.

The corners were rounded on a disk sander.

I really like this piece, turned out better than I expected.

fredag den 1. august 2014

Bronze nuts for z carriage

I bought some rods of 12mm bronze a while ago for scrap price. This thing makes nice bushings and things that need to slide with low friction. I drilled a 4.2mm hole, tapped to M5 and then machined to 10mm. Then I machined it to 8mm so it has a flange. 

They were cut off using a cut-off tool (lacking picture, sorry). The original RepRap plastic parts are supposed to fit a M5 so I disassembled the x-carriage and drilled out this hole to 8mm and hammered it in. I should have been more gentle as the x-motor mount cracked a bit. No worries, a bit of superglue would fix that. I just have to assemble everything together and... F*** The smooth rods are at an odd angle in the x-idler plastic. Not sure whether this is due to the printer that printed the part or me being a little too rough with the nut insertion (no pun intended). I fixed it a bit by drilling out the holes on a drill press to make it closer to 90°. It not quite there but it's better than before.

torsdag den 31. juli 2014

Assembly starting in 3...2...1... now!

I assembled the y-axis frame using four 8mm threaded rod, two 10mm threaded rod and two 8mm smoooooth rods. They were assembled with the corner pieces machined earlier. I used dome nuts where possible to make it look nicer, although frankly the threaded rod looks a little... ugly. I'll see if I can do some sort of cover-up of that, with aluminium tube or something. Otherwise I might just leave as is. I printed three lm8uu bearing holders to mount the y-carriage and also printed a belt tensioner. But as it turned out there were three holes, not two, so the belt holder doesn't fit. I need to design a belt tensioner to fit.

I also assembled the acrylic frame. I had to use a certain batch of 3mm nuts to fit in the laser cuts, since the tolerances are very tight. One hole chipped when I pressed the nut in too hard. But it is neither a problem for assembly, nor very visible, so I think I'll be okay.

I printed the x-axis motor mount and idler holder and see if they fit. They did! so I printed a carriage and now the individual axis are movable!

tirsdag den 29. juli 2014

Corner pieces: Milled and drilled

This is what a few hours of machining did to some 20 mm thick aluminium stock. I didn't have 20x20mm which would have saved a bunch of time (It would just be cut to length then drill, baby, drill), but at least this way they end up shinier, and I can anodize them should I so desire.

As you can see there is no M10 protruding the front (shown on the far left). The four pieces are all slightly different, but in essence they're just 20x20x52 mm with holes drilled 10, 20, 30 and 45mm from the bottom.

Also this is the 6mm laser cut acrylic to be assembled: