Hollow cylinder for filament holder made with a stand

by danielkschneider, published

Hollow cylinder for filament holder made with a stand by danielkschneider Aug 15, 2012

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This OpenScad module defines a hollow cylinder with parameters (outside, inside, length).

Together with a "chemistry stand" it will make a fine filament roll holder.


It is always better to have the filament roll on top of the extruder. If you got a high ceiling or if you are moving your printer, then you need a portable solution.

Buy a retort stand, i.e. the kind that is used in chemistry labs. Yours could be made of:

  • Two 1.2m vertical bars (with two attached "feet" or else attachable feet). You can take shorter vertical bars (e.g. 0.9m,) but then the horizotal bar may be at your eye-level ---
  • One horizontal 1m bar onto which you then can glide the roll.
  • Two connectors for fixing the horizontal bar. It is best to buy ones that allow to lift the horizontal bar quickly.

Configure the OpenScad program and print a hollow cylinder so that the roll can turn with less effort. Attached pictures show the principle.

The example included are for a 12mm bar and either a roll with a 31.6 mm hole or one with a 38.4mm hole. Unfortunately the filament roll holes come in many sizes....

This piece can be printed with any 3D printer in any quality. I suggest to use some kind of moderate fill. The printer on the picture is a Felix for which I made the cylinder. It was printed in ABS with a fabbster.

Tips for optimal performance:

  • Use a file for smoothening the inside
  • Print in high quality (0.25mm layers). A 3.7 x 19.5 cm cylinder can take many hours to print, but it may be worth the effort
  • Make sure that the horizontal bar is really horizontal.
  • Print 2 short extra-cylinders, insert before and after the big one and then use clamps to hold in position (for long "night printings")

  • Daniel


  • Of course, publishing a hollow cylinder is not worth a "thing" here, but I am really happy with my chemistry stand solution :)
  • Update 24/8/2012: Been using this for over a week now. I still like the setup a lot, but I reprinted the cylinder in better quality using PLA and added clamps. The roll now turns even more easily and can't slip off after a many hours of printing.
  • Update 26/10/2012: I am doing unsupervised 24h prints with this setup. Convinced :) The only remaining trouble is irregular filament, but that's a different issue ...

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I think the term you're after is "retort stand", I have been looking for some at the local recycling station but no luck so far...

Thanx :) Indeed, I didn't even know how to call these elements in French or German and had to inquire in our chemistry department.

In french both the rods and whole are called "statif" and in German the rods are called "Stativstangen".

Anyhow, that kind of equipment is indeed rather expensive, but I noticed that there are quite large price differences (probably related to quality)