3D Printer Assembly

2016-10-24 20:13 - Making

Lots of 3D printer parts, in baggies. The (acrylic) top and bottom plate of the 3D printer.
More parts in the shipping container. Yet more parts in the shipping container.

Besides modding my phone yesterday morning, the vast majority of the day yesterday and today has been spent on assembling my new 3D printer. I've been down on 3D printing overall for some time, largely due to quality issues and the amount of time that it takes to complete a print. I've got access to a 3D printer at work, which has satisfied me for occasional small projects over time. But I just completed a big one. And more importantly, for this post, I also got lucky and snagged roughly 40 one kilogram rolls of free ABS filament recently. For free.

That was enough to push me over the edge and get my own. Forty kg is effectively a lifetime supply. The big project I mentioned took over twelve hours to squirt well under half of a kilogram of filament into my custom shape. I could make 160 of those with this much filament.

Anyway, above is a set of pictures showing all the parts. I got a kit, because not only are kits cheaper, I enjoy putting them together. Plus, it means I know for sure how it all goes together, which helps inform knowing how it works, which makes repairs down the line easier. I've just now completed the last major part of assembly. All the screws are screwed in, all the wires are plugged in. I've turned it on and done the most basic of things (move a bit, go to auto home), and those basic things work.

The assembled 3D printer.

Here it is in all its glory. You might notice that this is not a traditional ("cartesian") 3D printer. Instead it's a "delta" style, which moves three arms up and down; when moved properly in concert the print head they connect to in the middle can be made to move left/right, forward/back, and up/down. But all the motors doing this are fixed, at the base, driving the arms through belts. So there's less mass to move around, which is always a good thing. Specifically this is a Geeetech G2s Pro. Which in addition to being a delta, which I like, also has two extruders. Meaning in theory (if I can learn how...) it can print with two different filaments, like two different colors, at once. Which presents exciting opportunities.

There's still a ton of things to check. All the wires are plugged in, but are they plugged in correctly? To the right thing? Does it get hot when I ask? Does it squirt out plastic when I ask? Is it level and square in each of the several ways that it needs to be? Are the fans pointing in the right direction? Do any of the wires or tubes bind up when the print head moves around?

So this is not "project done". But it's a significant milestone.


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