Threaded Rods / Leadscrews
In a Cartesian 3D printer, stepper motor-connected threaded rods or leadscrews drive the movement along the Z-axis. Some also use them on the X-axis and the Y-axis, resulting in a smoother and more precise movement, but at the expense of speed, not to mention that kind of setup is more expensive. The threaded rods or leadscrews on the Z-axis also add to the overall stability of the 3D printer.
Although they look similar, threaded rods and leadscrews are different from each other. Threaded rods are cheaper and are widely available. Leadscrews, on the other hand, are more expensive but offer a much smoother performance. Go for the setup that best suits your budget.
Software For Diy 3d Printer
Main things to do in 3D Printer is software. There is a different type of software available for 3d printing. here we use 4 software for 3d printing listed below.
Fusion 360: This software is used for making 3D Model. You can also use other 3D design software like Solidedge, Catia, Creo, Solid work, Autodesk Inventor, etc.
If you dont know the above software then you can direct download STL file from a number of websites available.
- Autodesk 123D
Cura:All the 3D Software understands the language of G-code. This software is used for the convert the 3D File into G-code.
If you are a beginner of this software then this tutorial is for you:
Xloader: It is used for upload the Hex file into Arduino.
Pronterface: This was the main software in 3D Printer. It will Operate your 3D Printing process.
Making The X Axis Carriage And Platform
NOTE: All dimensions in the images are in millimeters.
Find the three M8 coupling nuts from your shopping bags, and some sturdy metal sheet.
These nuts have 6 sides, and what you’re going to need to do is bend the metal sheet around 4 corners of the nut as tightly as possible like in fig. 1. You’re going to have to make 3 of these, one for each axis.
Cut a piece of metal sheet approximately 3 cm x 7 cm. Keep 2 cm sticking out, hold the metal sheet to one side of the nut, and attach it into a vice. Use a hammer to fold down the metal sheet onto the second side. Repeat this until the sheet is folded over 5 sides of the nut. Press the two straight loose ends of the sheet together and drill a small hole like in fig. 1. The two ends should not come all the way around but have a small gap in between. When both the ends are held together, it should act like a clamp and hold the nut tightly inside. Screw each one onto a threaded rod . Once you’ve done that you can fix the stepper motor holster to the frame. These coupling nut structures will be on the threaded rods in between both bearings . So you’re going to have to slide the threaded rod through one bearing, screw the coupling nut structure on, and then slide the threaded rod through the other bearing.
TIP: You can put a few drops of super glue between the wrapping and the nut so that they stick firmly to the nut. But make sure you don’t get any inside the threads!
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What Type Of 3d Printing Technology User Are You
You need to identify your skill level as well as your needs so that you can pinpoint the exact things that you expect from your 3D printer. This is the first step on the way to purchase a 3D printer.
Building from Scratch A lot of tech-savvy technology enthusiasts attempt to make their own 3D printer from scratch. This requires some exceptional mechanical and programming skills to begin with, so if you have the nous and patience, then by all means, take this route to the 3D printing arena.
3D Printer Kits Another option to get yourself a working 3D printer is by getting a 3D printer kit. These kits come with all the necessary parts required to set up a printer. They do, however, require a fair bit of mechanical and programming knowledge from your part. This is a great way to get to know your machine from inside out so if you ever have to troubleshoot problems, you will have the exact idea of where to look.
Assembled Machine The easiest and fastest method of getting your hands on a 3D printer is to get an assembled one. Most 3D printing companies now offer ready-made desktop 3D printers. When you purchase a printer, many of them are delivered to you ready to use . This method does cost a little more than the above two routes, but you save yourself a lot of headache and avoid a lot of hassle too.
This chapter will mainly focus on helping you to choose an assembled 3D printer, rather than acting as a guide to build a 3D printer.
Look For Powerful Controller Board
Mostly, the decision would depend on the functionality of the 3D printer you are trying to achieve.
However, in case you are looking to create a complete plug and play device, that does not ditch you with the change in environment, avoid products that use cheap USB-to-serial bridge replacements.
Look for the right controller board that makes you pat your back every time you start your 3D printer for designing desired models.
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Use Trustworthy Temperature Sensors
Before you plan to order temperature sensors, remember to check the quality and get it from a renowned brand. Make sure these are accompanied by trustworthy datasheets.
Or else, you may not be able to measure the temperature precisely. Why get into guesswork when you can accurately measure the temperature?
Also, the temperature sensor must provide a decent thermal coupling to the hot-end heater block. This would allow maintaining a steady temperature. The best option is the thermal compound.
Self Sourced Diy 3d Printer Plans
When sourcing your own parts for a printer there are a few things you need to take into account: what type of printer do you want to build, what parts do you need and where can you source them from.
The best 3d printer kits give a great range of options depending on performance needs and budget. Beginners can start off with an unassembled diy kit which is less expensive than pre-assembled machines.
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Best 3d Printing Channels On Youtube
Unlike the problem of plenty associated with woodworking YouTube content, its extremely hard to find decent 3D printing channels. The relatively nascent maker hobby is plagued by bad advice and YouTube channels lacking expertise and quality content. You are a lot more likely to find better guidance through 3D printing Discord communities instead. This selection of 3D printing channels, therefore, defers to YouTube channels run by proven experts in the field, who base their content around nudging beginners in the right direction.
Fundamental Change To Manufacturing Processes
When it comes to the current commercial manufacturing process, assembly lines are utilized to assemble various parts together until the final product takes shape. 3D Printing will have huge implications for the current manufacturing processes.
For example, the use of a 3D printer for manufacturing products at a factory will only require a computer design to be sent to the printer, thus eliminating the need of assembly lines, as the printer will be able to churn out complete products.
As previously mentioned, 3D printing technology falls within the boundaries of additive manufacturing, which is the opposite of subtractive manufacturing processes where objects are carved out using numerous tools. The former, on the other hand, builds the object layer-by-layer without the use of any particular tools. This enables designers to devise even the most complex of designs without having to worry about how they will actually be created 3D printers can generally print out complex designs with no problems at all.
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How Much Does It Cost To Build A 3d Printer
From what Ive read and researched, it turns out that you can build your very own 3D printer for somewhere in the $100-200 range.
Of course, better quality products will cost more and if you want better modifications, youll have to pay extra as well.
But as far as a decent, working 3D printer is concerned, you can cut the costs of the traditional approaches and get yourself your own custom-built printer very cheap.
Then again, time and effort weighs in, and this is something that might not appeal to many people at all and come off as a significant downside.
You need to get the following basic parts in order to build, well, a basic 3D printer that functions okay. Next to their names are their approximate prices as well so you could have an idea.
- Stepper Motors
- Bowden or Direct Drive Extrusion System
- Printer Frame
- Wiring Components i.e. Conductors and Insulators
- Limit Switches
- Threaded Rods
- End Stops
If you add all of that minus the cost of the printer frame, you get a total sum of something under $160. The next step relates to software a fundamental component of a 3D printer.
Its the software that controls your machine, and nothing else. Without it, your 3D printer is good as collecting dust.
Next up is a slicer that slices your design file and makes it understandable for the 3D printer typically in the form of G-code.
Moreover, the implementation of a slicer is followed by firmware both of which can be commonly found at no additional expense.
How To Make Your Own 3d Models For 3d Printing
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Anybody who owns a 3D printer has probably tried using free models that can be downloaded easily. However, there is a different level of satisfaction that comes from making your own models or files for 3D printing.
You can build a 3D model in a CAD platform and export this as an STL file that a slicer can recognize. There are several options for CAD software that are free to use and are beginner-friendly. However, there are a few design rules to keep in mind so that the model encounters no problems during 3D printing.
Making 3D models may seem intimidating, but you can build you can start out with simple shapes while gradually building up your skill level. Check out some of our tips to help you in this journey.
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How Should You Go About Printing Models That You Created
Slicing software is an important tool required to create a final, printable fileIf you used computer-aided design software to create your model, then the software will be able to export it as an STL file. All you would have to do would be to use a slicing software program to transform it into a G Code file.
On the other hand, if you used a 3D program such as Photoshop, Sketchup or any other 3D design program that isnt specifically designed for CAD, then the process of getting the G code file requires several steps.
Once of the first things that need to be done is to see whether the 3D model is genuinely printable or not. In most cases, minor changes will be required, such as patching up of holes and repairing of vertices.
Secondly, the file will need to be converted into an STL before it can be sliced for the printer.
You can use a free, open-source application called Meshlab to perform both the tasks of patching up the model and generating the STL file. You may also want to look into a commercial program called NetFabb that can generate the G Code files as well.
Choosing The Motion Structure And Frame
Before you even worry about the other components, you need to think about the mechanical arrangement and frame material of the 3D printer. There are different kinds of FFF/FDM 3D printers, the most popular and the most recommended for a DIY beginner is a Cartesian 3D printer.
In a Cartesian XZ Head setup, the 3D printer has a gantry structure with an extruder mount that moves up and down on the Z-axis and side to side along the X-axis. Meanwhile, the print bed moves on the Y-axis, perpendicular to the X-axis. While relatively easy to build, a Cartesian XZ Head mechanical arrangement is prone to stability issues due in part to the constant lateral movement of the print bed, so a robust frame is a must.
In a Cartesian XY Head setup, the hotend is fixed at the top of the 3D printer and moves on the X-axis and the Y-axis while the print bed moves up and down on the Z-axis. This particular mechanical arrangement has a more complicated structure and requires a cube or rectangular frame. On the bright side, a Cartesian XY mechanical arrangement can print faster on average and has better stability.
The Original Prusa i3 MK3 is an example of a 3D printer with a Cartesian XZ Head structure while the Ultimaker 3 is an example of a 3D printer with a Cartesian XY Head structure.
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Elegoo Saturn 3d Printer
Do you want to go a bit bigger with your resin 3D printing, both in volume and price? Much like the Mars 2 Pro, the ELEGOO Saturn is an MSLA 3D printer, but with a build volume of 192 x 120 x 250mm and a 4K HD monochrome LCD display. Its a great option if you know youll be printing a lot of larger models, or if you want to do larger bulk print runs for smaller models.
The Anatomy Of A 3d Printer
You dont necessarily have to learn about each and every individual part of a 3D printer in order to use it. However, learning about the basic hardware and construction of one can help you if you ever have to troubleshoot a problem This knowledge will also be of a great help when you go out to actually buy a printer.
There are various types and methods employed by 3D printers to create objects and we have already discussed them in the previous chapters of this book. In this chapter, our emphasis will be on Fused Deposition Modeling technique that is the most common among desktop 3D printers used at home. This method can be considered to be the same as the glue-gun method. The glue-gun method consists of heating up a filament to a point where it melts this melting filament is then placed in thin layers and the object is created layer-by-layer.
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The Software To Make It Work
Download the Marlin firmware for the Arduino Mega here. Download the Zip file and extract all the files. Inside the “Marlin” folder you should find a “Marlin” INO file . Open that into the Arduino IDE. Go to the configuration.h tab and scroll down until you see the same as in fig. 3. Change the digits so that it now matches fig. 4. Save the whole file, and upload it to your Arduino!
Download the Arduino IDE here if you don’t have it already.
Download Repetier Host here.
Launch Repetier Host, enter some basic information about your printer, like the max build dimensions, upload a test 3D object , slice the object and hit the print button! Don’t forget to plug your power supply cord into the socket now. 🙂
The Arduino should be connected to the laptop/PC at all times. You can buy an SD card slot for RAMPS 1.4. This SD card holder can be inserted into the RAMPS 1.4 board so that the printer can run without a laptop or PC being connected to it.
Before you slice the object you will need to edit their configurations to set the printer to the correct temperatures .
What Is A 3d Printer
These machines are used to convert the 3D designs that a person can do with the help of the computer into a real object. To attain this, they use liquid plastic rather of the ink to which we are habituated, which after the impression solidifies and made the object.
They are usually big machines that can cost approx five thousand dollars, but technological progress is making them available to the general public easily.
An object that made in 3D Printer shown in below image.
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Eighth To Bowden Or Not To Bowden
The next decision is whether you want to use direct drive or a bowden tube. Lets look at the differences.
- Lighter hotend allows faster printing speed
- less chance of drag from filament
- Sloppier hotend response
- Filament waste when fixing clog
I personally prefer Bowden designs because they are easier to use regarding extruder design and you never have to put much pressure on the hotend assembly.
Recently, there has been an invention that uses a direct drive bowden configuration. It has a regular bowden tube that has an extruder assembly on the hotend assembly. The hobbed mechanism is turned via a rotary cable from the stepper motor. The same type of cable thats used on dremel tools or speedometer cables. Its just a smaller version meant to drive a worm gear on a drive gear.
How To Choose A 3d Printer
Gone are the days when 3D printing was limited to prototyping only. Today, 3D printing technology has grown to become quite popular, and continues to do so as the technology improves at consistent rates. It is now capable enough to offer advantages from the initial concept design to the production of the final end product.
If we look just a few years back, the luxury of in-house printing was only limited to a few professional design engineers, while the technology was itself in its emerging stage and limited to a very few design models and prototypes.
The day has come where a great number of hobbyists and creative minds have gotten access to their very own personal 3D printers, empowering them to unleash their creativity to the world. Now people can design their own models and print them at home!
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