Replicator 2 Top Mount Filament Spool Holder/Dispenser

by brackett27, published

Replicator 2 Top Mount Filament Spool Holder/Dispenser by brackett27 Apr 15, 2013
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I got tired of tripping over spools of filament in my office. I borrowed the concept from a design I saw (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:51635) but made it lighter and faster to print. And prettier too. :)

The rod is a SS 3/8in 24in long. (you can get rods and nuts from Home Depot/Lowes etc. or online at http://www.McMaster.com)

I simulated the tower in Solidworks (files attached) and it should be able to hold up to ~100lbs total between the two towers.

I recently added a second tier to mine and it works great tool (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:94691)


Print a left and right of each tower. You will have to orient it tabs down on your build plate.

The towers come with tabs on them to prevent curl. You will need to cut/snap them off. I found I needed to use dykes to do it. I used 5 shells, 10% infill, 0.34mm height.

I printed some spindles so the spools roll better on the threaded rod (the red bits). I printed them five on a plate, you can too. I printed them in the vertical so you will need to flip accordingly too.

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Quick question, when I put into MakerBot Desktop, it says that it needs to be rescaled. Will the rescaling change anything?

It should not be rescaled, the bolt patterns won't fit the printer if you do that. I'm not sure why it's asking you to do it either. What printer are you trying to print it on?

Works great, thanks! I went with a 5/16" threaded rod, and that fit nicely.

This is a great design! I have a PowerSpec 3D Pro; the bed is not long enough to print full size, so I reduced the length of the brackets to 75%. Unfoutunately, now the mounting holes don't align with the screws on the machine, so I'm planning to mount the gantry with heavy duty two-sided tape on all three mounting surfaces.

The brackets are long enough to hold full-sized filament rolls, but I'm going to print spool holders with an ID of 3/8 inch to fit the threaded rod and an OD closer to that of the holes on the filament spools. This will raise the filaments by an inch (I think) and allow the spools to turn more smoothly (I hope). Gotta go to work now but I'll finish things up and post photos over the weekend.

Are you guys printing with support?

I found it prints without support with the settings in the instructions. From the number of builds I have heard of nobody doing it differently.

Just curious before I go ahead and make this, has anyone had issues with snagging or anything in the case of using a spool from either end when the extruder moves across to the far side away from the spool being used? That just seems like a problem that could potentially occur. Also, has anyone had issues with the imbalance of weight to the back of the makerbot? I understand the design and supports are stable but is the makerbot balanced? just wondering if it might fall over

Nick, I have had no issues unless of course somehow the spool was wound poorly or allowed to spring free at some point. So a tangle on the spool now and then, yes, but that was on me, not the design. As to the weight if you look in my designs you will find a second deck that doubles the weight and height of the system with another set of spools. Can you tip the printer over and is it less stable? Sure with some effort. I have found you need to raise the printer front at least 2+ inches in the front before it will start to tip at all. So no issue there, even with a fully loaded spool set (14 1kg spools). I probably have close to 2000 operating hours on my setup presently.

Was so going to print this for my FlashForge Creator X, until I realized it won't fit my 9" print bed. Sad panda.

I printed this and have been using it for a few weeks now. It is rock solid and has no trouble holding 5 spools of filament. Great job!

First off, thank you for this great design, I've finished printing and about to attach. I am finding though that the bolts are not long enough to reach the internal threads with the added tower. Did you have to get longer ones?

Wow, yes, I found a couple M6 - 1.00 x 20 Screws that fit perfectly. What is even better is that they have the hex bolts and look exactly like the original Makerbot screws. These towers are wonderful.. so much easier to access the rolls!

I found the M6 x 20 were too long and required a 2mm washer (which i printed) to keep everything tight.


Yes, I happened to have a box of metric cap screws that fit. Sorry for not being clear. I am pretty sure they are M6.

Thanks much for your reply. I got some slightly longer M5's at the local hardware store which did the trick! Posting pics shortly...

Thanks for sharing this! I'm printing the right-side tower as I type this. What size rod is this designed for? 1/4" (55mm)?

I assume this will work on a 2x as well?

As long as the mount holes for the back and side panels are in the same place then sure, I think it would. I do not have one of those, sorry...

How long does this take to print? Also what MB setting should I print on?

Took 4.5 hours for one side.

It took a while (hours) but I am not certain, I am almost always running the printer while I do other stuff so I usually do not keep track. The settings I used are in the instructions.

The design needs knock out supports at the top for the grooves that hold the rod. I had to put my finger there to give the PLA something to land on. Still printing,,, I sure hope the Rep2 can bridge the gaps! I think it can....

I... didn't do that. And I wound up with a 1/4" rod that fit VERY snugly after cleanup (note that it calls for a 3/8")

There were a couple of threads when I did it, but they were of little consequence given my 5 shells. I snipped them out, they are under where the rod sits anyhow so you never see them. The more impressive bridge is the tops of the trusses which my rep 2 had no issues with. Perfect, no. Totally acceptable yes. :) I posted the SolidWorks files so if you want to add them go right ahead, I figure I will not be printing another set of these anytime soon. Of course you could just turn on supports in Makeware but I bet you would end up with a mess to clear and cleanup.

On the 2nd part I simply put a postit into the slot so that it matched the curve. It acted like the perfect support. Nice design. Thanks for sharing!

Clever idea. I will have to remember that trick...

Clever idea. I will have to remember that trick...

On the 2nd part I simply put a postit into the slot so that it matched the curve. It acted like the perfect support. Nice design. Thanks for sharing!

Nice design. Printing it now. You do know you can remove the "Do Not Lift" tag right?

Yeah, I just never got around to it... I have a mattress and pillows with tags on them too... :)

I didn't remove the tag on purpose. You aren't supposed to lift with the harness later either. It only will take one time to break something!

True enough, I finally read the small print on the tag that said to remove before operation. Now that I have hundreds of hours on my Rep 2 I wonder what happens when I take it off. :)

I've been running my Rep1 like this for months. Not a single problem with snags or anything else. It's where the spools should be.