Building a Printrbot 3D Printer - Overview
This is the first part of a tutorial on building a DIY 3D printer. The model I have chosen is a member of the Printrbot family, since it is probably the most compact, simple and cheap desing out there
Mine is called "Lucy", this guide will be based on it, here is a picture:
You can find the main details of this design in these websites:
- http://reprap.org/wiki/Wallace (This is a very similar design)
I encourage you to check those links out. Also, you should get an overview of other open-hardware 3D printer designs, if you haven't already done so. For example, my other 3D printer is a "Prusa Mendel"
The original Printrbot design is nice, but we will be using some modifications to make it even more convenient to build.
Differences with the original Printrbot design:
- Everything is measured using metric units instead of imperial, so it is easier to get hardware parts in the EU.
- It has a bigger build volume: XYZ 20x20x21cm (Z expandable) VS the original 16x16x20cm (aproximately)
- It uses M8 rods and LM8UU linear bearings.
- I have found the Printrstand to be essential for the stability of the printer.
OK, now we have cleared that, let's get started!
Bill of materials: (last updated: July 2nd, 2012)
First of all, here is a list of all the required parts (with the suppliers I got them from), to get a rough estimation of the costs:
- Electronics & motors:
|1||71.42€+VAT||Sanguinololu v1.3a board DIY Kit + stepstick motor drivers||http://reprapworld.com/ Or you can find the v1.3b (easier to build) cheaper in eBay|
|5||55€+VAT||Stepper motor (NEMA17)||http://reprapworld.com/|
|1||34.99€+VAT||Extruder set 3mm v5||http://reprapworld.com/ This one is working for me, but there is still a big discussion about which is the best extruder|
|1||24.99€+VAT||PCB for heated bed||http://reprapworld.com/|
|2||4.98€+VAT||Axial Fan 30x30x10mm 12V||http://reprapworld.com/|
|1||~2€||Heatsink adhesive paste||Dealextreme: http://www.dealextreme.com/|
Electronic parts (3 micro switches -endstops-, NTC 100k thermistor), wires, heatshrink tube and connectors
|Electronics store. I will detail the required parts later on the tutorial|
12V/20A ATX power supply (PSU)
|You can easily get a suitable PSU from an old computer. Make sure it's at least 17A rated on the 12V output|
|Sum (aprox.):||210.38€+30€||240.38€||I have included 30€ which goes for the RepRapWorld VAT and shipping|
|1||Read supplier||3D Printed parts||If you alredy have a 3D printer, it's free! In other case, you should ask in proyect Clon Wars|
|1||Free?||Glass sheet (21.5x21.5x0.5cm) for heated bed||Went to a glass factory and they made them for me for free because they liked the project :D IKEA has a mirror set that fits our purpose|
|2||7€+VAT||Timing belt 1m x 2.5mm (T2.5)||http://reprapworld.com/|
|2||16€||Metalic T2.5 pulley||I think they have it in RS. -pending supplier-|
|2||Free?||Small spring (20x5mm)||They *might* have valid ones in a hardware store. You probably have valid ones lying around, though|
|11||19.25€+VAT||LM8UU linear bearing||http://reprapworld.com/|
|1||26€||20cm adhesive Kapton tape (33m)||From eBay: http://www.ebay.com/|
|1||Free?||25x32cm 5mm plywood board||I had a suitable one laying around, you can find it in any hardware store or similar. I recommend using plywood instead of MDF since it will bend less with heat and humidity.|
|1||0.25€||M8 7cm bolt with hexagonal head||Hardware store|
|1||10€||Screws, nuts and washers (various lenghts, see table below)||Hardware store|
|2||3€||1m M8 threaded rod||Hardware store|
|3||17€||1m M8 smooth stainless steel rod||I bought these online, shipping is included and they cutted them for me http://www.novoinox.com/. You can find them much cheaper though. Madrid: http://www.ventahierrocorteamedida.es/|
|1||5€||50 Nylon cable ties||Hardware store|
|1||8€||Industrial grease and oil||Hardware store|
|1||6€||Fire cement (1200ºC resistant paste)||Hardware store|
|6||1€||Small (2cm) metallic paper clips||Hardware store/stationer's shop|
|Sum (aprox.):||120€+30€||150€||I have included 30€ which goes for the RepRapWorld VAT and shipping|
Screws, nuts and washers (detail):
|Exact quantity||Suggested quantity||Item||Note|
|8||10||M3 screw 8mm||For the motors on the X axis and the extruder|
|8||10||M3 screw 10mm||For the two motors on the Z axis|
|2||3||M3 screw 15mm||For the motor on the Y axis, it needs to be shifted down with 3 washers on each screw|
|12||14||M3 screw 20mm|
|5||7||M3 screw 25mm|
|1||2||M3 screw 30mm||For the X axis endstop|
|4||5||M3 screw 35mm|
|1||2||M3 screw 40mm||For the Y axis endstop|
|2||3||M3 screw 45mm||These are used to fix in place Reprapworld's hot-end v5|
|4||6||M4 washer||M4 parts are for the extruder's mechanism. I've tried with M3 but it doesn't feel as solid as with M4|
|2||3||M4 screw 50mm|
|2||3||M4 wing nut||You can also use normal nuts, but it is more easy to switch filament with wing nuts|
Note: Cheaper screws are usually flathead, those are OK. If you can't find the exact length, simply choose the next longer one available.
- Tools (Free?):
- Two wrenches (hexagonal for M8 nuts)
- Cutter/modeling knife
- Soldering iron (small tip) and tin.
- Digital caliper (you can find it in eBay for like 10€, I consider it free as it is a tool).
So, you could theoretically build this 3D printer for around 395€
Note: If you finally order from http://reprapworld.com/ remember to buy some 3mm plastic filament. Your 3D printer wouldn't be very useful without ink I would say 1kg of PLA and 1kg of ABS plastic of different colors is a good start. http://www.faberdashery.co.uk/ has a large variety of PLA colors.
Now go ahead and buy everything you need. Some parts will take one or two weeks to arrive ordering them online, but the highlighted ones can be found on any hardware store.
You must cut the steel rods into these pieces. Maybe your supplier can do that for you:
- Threaded rods:
- 4x 32cm for the base
- 2x 25cm for the Z axis (if they are longer you can print taller, with this you get around 21cm)
- 1x 40mm for mounting the idler bearing on the X carriage
- Smooth rods:
- 2x 31cm for the Y axis
- 2x 35cm for the Z axis (same note: longer rod -> taller prints)
- 2x 33cm for the X axis (try to be very precise with both having same lenght)
- 1x 2cm for mounting one bearing on the extruder
This will give you a printer with the same size as mine, though you could make a bigger printer scaling parts as required.