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3d Printers
#1
My powerwall build got me into 3d printing.  Started out buying a kit from Reprapguru and then graduated to building my own from scratch.  Sourced all the various pieces and assembled.  They're great fun but an expensive hobby.

One on the left is the kit, the printer on the right i built from parts.  Frame on it is steel and the bed is twice the size of my first one.
hbpowerwall and Wattsup like this post
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#2
I think 3D printing in my next natural progression very interested - however seems finance manager isn't ...
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#3
Great... the obvious thing is to print your own cell holders , one piece weighs 16.5 grams and sells for $0.57(including delivery , eBay) ..

Can a 3D printer compete with that?

Could a printer even make it to the same quality?? very hard rigid plastic .. VERY fine tolerance , the way they fit together??
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#4
Not in that form factor But I have been printing my cell holders that are in a 2x6 or 2x7 configuration and it's strong. Just not overly cost effective. but when you want a specific design that no one sells it's the only way to go.
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#5
(05-07-2017, 11:15 PM)hbpowerwall Wrote: I think 3D printing in my next natural progression very interested - however seems finance manager isn't ...

Should just start with one of those cheap kits on ebay (anet a8).  It gives you a taste so you know what direction you want to go before spending the bigger bucks on something of better quality.
Off Grid Setup
3 - 320watt 24v Panels - MPPSolar 2424LV-MSX - 672 Cell 96p7s 5.5kw Power Wall

Retired pack 2kw 420 Cell

On Grid Setup
44 - 250 Watt Panels with Enphase micro inverters
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#6
(05-08-2017, 02:08 AM)AZ_Tekkie Wrote:
(05-07-2017, 11:15 PM)hbpowerwall Wrote: I think 3D printing in my next natural progression very interested - however seems finance manager isn't ...

Should just start with one of those cheap kits on ebay (anet a8).  It gives you a taste so you know what direction you want to go before spending the bigger bucks on something of better quality.

+1

I finished one a couple of days ago. $200 au from Banggood. I payed about $20 extra for faster delivery (took about 10 days from China to country NSW)

https://www.banggood.com/Anet-A8-3D-Prin...mds=search

I think I spent about 6 hours on assembly using their youtube assembly videos. If you're not bothered by a bit of DIY assembly, the print quality is amazing for $200. There's a big community around them online too. Easy to find information on. I've purchased a couple of 3D printed bits from a local store which were done on a $2500 printer, and they were no better than the prints this does. I've only printed PLA so far. It's probably not ideal for ABS unless it was put into an enclosure (some people are just sticking them in a small cupboard etc)

There's some reports of the heated bed connectors not rated highly enough and some catching alight. Mine came with a newer model motherboard and the connectors look beefier. The connector at the hot bed end does look a bit on the flimsy side. I left the temp sensor wires in the connector and just soldered the heater wires straight to the bed.

A popular mod is a mofset board to power the bed directly from the PSU triggered from the motherboard (only about $7 on eBay). My mofset board isn't here yet, but after couple of 2 hour print jobs the connectors weren't overly hot.

It's now on a 22 hour job printing something one of our kids designed in tinkercad. 


The base on mine has about a 1mm twist (can see a tiny gap between the front edge on the left and the table). For now I've just pulled it down with a screw into the table and a zip tie. I think I could probably get it even by re-tensioning the threaded bolts on the bottom.
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#7
For anyone trying an Anet a8, one of the popular mods is the ring style fan duct:

https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1823404


The original supplied duct blows on to the front side of the extruded plastic, leaving some minor stepping on the rear side of prints. The circular duct does eliminate that. There's lot's of forum posts and youtube videos saying that the ring duct should be the first thing you print.

There's some problems though:

1) part of the ring is close enough to the extruder that it gets too warm and starts to sag after a while
2) on larger jobs with areas of solid fill, the circular duct drops the temp of the extruder too far. I saw as low as 140 deg when 190 set for a pla print. It clogged and wrecked a large job about 4 hours in.

I could avoid the big temperature drop by setting the fan speed to 75% in cura, but that was a bit too low. It produced a bit of stringing and a small clump of plastic around a corner of one print. 

To avoid the duct sagging due to heat, I'm going to play with one of the semicircular designs. Apparently after changing a duct style, it's better to do a PID autotune rather than lower fan speed to avoid excessive extruder temperature drops.

The details of this design include instructions for a PID autotune for the A8

https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2133328
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#8
Got mine as a kit 3 years ago. Bought the upgrade for it. but have modded so much not the same machine anymore.
QED Two-UP converted to the Three-up 

And no will not let you have the file to print the beer.
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#9
Hello Everyone. I've spec'd and installed 2 major 3D printing systems over the past couple years and there are huge differences with speed of build and dimensional quality versus the smaller units which I respectfully call "toys" (I have a toy at home too). The big units have soluble support which melts in a low form of warm acid which is great for complex parts. The cost of a Dimension 1200es = 48k and only runs ABS. The cost of a Fortus 450 is 200k+, but it can run 10 different types of plastics. In the end, it's still a weak FDM printed part. Nothing beats a plastic molded part and it's a matter of finding the right vendor source to have a tool machined and run for the right price. The power is in numbers. How many pieces to justify the mold...? 3D printers are great, but I don't see them ever reaching the speeds, the quality and price of a molded part.
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#10
(11-15-2017, 05:40 AM)DZINENGR Wrote: Hello Everyone. I've spec'd and installed 2 major 3D printing systems over the past couple years and there are huge differences with speed of build and dimensional quality versus the smaller units which I respectfully call "toys" (I have a toy at home too). The big units have soluble support which melts in a low form of warm acid which is great for complex parts. The cost of a Dimension 1200es = 48k and only runs ABS. The cost of a Fortus 450 is 200k+, but it can run 10 different types of plastics. In the end, it's still a weak FDM printed part. Nothing beats a plastic molded part and it's a matter of finding the right vendor source to have a tool machined and run for the right price. The power is in numbers. How many pieces to justify the mold...? 3D printers and sticker printer at topvinylcutters.com are great, but I don't see them ever reaching the speeds, the quality and price of a molded part.
It is very hard to get the correct "value for money" in the 3D printer house. The cheap rods are all pliable, and the covers could not works, wobble or the balls begin to crumble when you see raw bits, including steel rods and linear bearings.

The more costly I see, the more value I see when I see costly printers. The industry is not the same, only one "Alienware" of 3D printing is available and that is MakerBot. Any other costly imprinter has to do with high-quality components and design effort.

I recommend you buy a 3D printer, nice one if you can afford it, and place your mind in a hobby for which the 3D printer can support you. Perhaps the creation of your own PC accessories, a headphone stand, cable control etc. will start. Maybe go on to research Arduino or Raspberry Pi and create a robot with the printed 3D parts or better yet.
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