3D Printing (archived - 2012)
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Last update: in December 2012.
Current information on this subject can be found at nowhere currently.
- Brian Q
To continuously research and develop amateur 3D printing techniques (primarily plastic extrusion).
Protospace has recently had a Makerbot Cupcake CNC donated, that is currently not functioning, this is an ongoing project to get it back working again so that Protospace will have a general access 3D printer.
Progress thus far
- RapMan upgraded to firmware 4.2.2
- BFB Axon Software package has been found to be the best at converting STL files to BFB files for the RapMan
- The Rapman is printing accurate 3D objects in ABS, haven't tried PLA yet.
- The Makerbot Cupcake CNC has been upgraded to the newest firmware
- Small objects can be printed on the CupCake CNC
- Install new heated print bed - The current bed is warped, and ABS plastic also warps / lifts from the bed because it needs to be heated throughout during the print. Here is the bed Brian ordered (which is also what he will put on his Ultimaker when it arrives next month) > http://mixshop.ca/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=96
- Dual print headers (future upgrade) > http://www.bitsfrombytes.com/store/rapman-31-double-head-extruder-upgrade This will allow us to use both PLA & ABS at the same time to create much more complicated objects with proper structural support. You could also feed one with water soluble filament so that the support structure of an object can be washed away after it's printed.
Cupcake CNC upgrades:
- Filament Spindle MK1 - We can laser cut most of these parts ourselves once the laser is running, the other parts are cheap. Solarbotics installed this on their makerbot, makes it a lot more usable > http://wiki.makerbot.com/spindle-mk1-assembly#toc29
- A new plastruder - the one on our Cupcake CNC is an old revision, we should upgrade to at least a MK6 > http://store.makerbot.com/stepstruder-mk6-plus.html. The kit is currently sold out, but Dana has a contact at Makerbot that we might be able to utilize for sourcing parts.
- New electronics to control the MK6 - This may be difficult to source as there aren't any new boards being produced for the cupcake CNC. Thus, we may have to go with a board developed by a third party > http://koti.kapsi.fi/~kliment/gen3plus/
- Z Crank - we can print it, tis a nice little tweak > http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:975
- Use our existing 3D printers to print replacement parts for themselves
- Print parts for Prusa Mendel Kits
- Source non-printed parts for Prusa Mendel Kits
- Sell Prusa Mendel Kits
USING THE 3D PRINTERS
- Raft must be set at 244 degrees celcius or higher, otherwise it will lift from print bed (this will be fixed once we have the heated bed)
- Object should be set 10 degrees hotter than raft to allow (somewhat) easy separation.