upgrading from single to dual extruder

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I own a geeetech prusa I3 with single extrusion and <I am really happy with it. BUT (there's always a but..) Now that I know what a single extruder can do and would like to play around with mixed materials (e.g. flex on non-flex) doesn't support
Does anybody have some experience with upgrading? Which parts would I need? My ramps 1.4 doesn't support dual extrusion, so I would need to upgrade the board... to which one? Next question would be direct extrusion or bowden extrusion?
I'm a Makibox victim and bowden extrusion didn't work on that machine..

Amadon's Cyclops and Chimera Direct Drive Version 3
by Amadon

The extruder mount looks great and all, but puzzled me how do you screw in the motor to the mount?

You run three 120mm m3 screws or threaded rod all the way from one side to the other through both motors.

I see, but it is quite complex to me, the mounting how it's done actually. Not to mention an m3 x 120mm or m3 threaded rods are hard to come by too

Check out my "things". I've designed quite a few dual extruders. I'd recommend the cyclops/chimera version 3. Works great and simple to use. Is your printers x axis similar to a prusa i3? Does it use 8mm smooth rods with one above the other instead of side by side? Got a link to your printer so I could take a look at it?

EDIT: Here's the thing I was talking about. http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1143466

Amadon's Cyclops and Chimera Direct Drive Version 3
by Amadon

your design looks really good. I don't think that geeetech did change much of the original design..
I have the newer version with 8mm Acrylic.

Oh cool. yea that dual extruder should work great on your printer. Be sure to post an "I made one" if you use it! Let me know if you have any questions.

So you're using a stock geeetech hot end set? you might either want to use 2 e3d v6s or buy a cyclop/chimera from them, e3d, or another mk8 extruder+ hot end set from geeetech.

You need another extruder and stepper motor too though.

ramps 1.4 does able to support 2 extruders at one go, it's a matter of marlin firmware board setting

Hi, I have a Prusa i3 Hephestos with one Extruder. I didn't print with a dual Extruder but, the Ramps 1.4 supports a dual Extruder on the Pin D9.
It also support a Fan for each Extruder, you must change the Pin in the configuration.h from Fan Pin to a Digital Servo Pin.

What you mean by "Fan Pin to a Digital Servo Pin"? where on board you connect the fan?
All the motor connections are in use with 2 extruders. And besides this only 12V connection on RAMPS 1.4 is D08, D09, D10 - all also occupied, if you have heated bed.

Hi, There are really three 12V connections on the Ramps 1.4, but when you are familiar which Pulswidthmodulation (PWM) you can take the 5V PWM on the four Servo Pins and amplify the signals, but you must define these Pins in the configuration.h. So I will made a PCB which I connect to 12V (on the Ramps 1.4) and take two or more PWM signals from the Servo connector and amplify, maybe I made a filter for the 12V PWM. Or you can buy a finished PCB form G3D. (On this PCB you only have two PWM connectors)

The Fan Pin (it is equal to D9) is the Name on the Repetier Configurations Tool which I used in expert mode, I like this tool beacause it is more clearly like the raw configuration.h file.


Ok! It is the same thing as I mention here: http://www.geeetech.com/reprap-ramps14-rrd-fan-extender-p-683.html?zenid=sba22hm5p5rtfmgso7vguhuoq3 You just put this on Servo Pins, connect 12V and it works out of box, since in RAMPS EEB config, the fan is defined on pin 11, if I remember correctly. And this small board use both Pin 6 and Pin 11.

Yes of couse sorry I didn't open the link in you comment.
This extender is only for two when I will have two Extruders I will need 4 because the print fan is on the D11 on my printer.
I made anyway my oon PCB because I will switch the PSU on and off over the Ramps and I need to connect a relay.

Hi! I have Prusa I3 and did upgrade to dual extruder. From electronics - RAMPS 1.4 support it without problem. You have place for 2 extruders. If you want to keep the controlled fan, you can get this small addition: http://www.geeetech.com/reprap-ramps14-rrd-fan-extender-p-683.html?zenid=sba22hm5p5rtfmgso7vguhuoq3
I did go for Bowden- because I wanted the mooving part of printhead to be as light as possible. So i go for two E3D V6 hotends and finally created my own mount for it (to have very easy and precise height adjustment.) http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1217701
Now I am planning to switch to E3D Cyclope extruder.
For Marlin - it is quite easy - as ViperaKV mentioned, you need to change board type. And then set up (test) the pins for fan, calibrate the nozzle to nozzle distance.

Prusa I3 Dual, adjustable E3D printhead holder - "Slider"

Quick question: Where does that fan extender plug into your RAMPS? Does it use the same pins the LCD/SD reader use? Can this be used with a RAMPS 1.4 with dual extruder + heated bed + reprapdiscount LCD/SD card reader?

Hi Amadon! It plugs in RAMPS servos plug (AUX1) check the layout: http://www.geeetech.com/wiki/images/c/c3/Ramps_interfaces.jpg I have also reprapdiscount LCD with SD, and it plugs in AUX3 & AUX4. So shortly yes :) That is the configuration I am using.

Perfect. Do you know if marlin firmware supports this? What changes do I need to make to firmware settings?

Yes, Marlin supports it! (Since I am using Marlin branch - MarlinKimbra, but tested also with Marlin) There is just a question what you want to do with the fans. You can run two fans from that board - on PIN6 and PIN11. In my case I use one fan for hotend "cool part" cooling - switched on, when one of extruders reach 50deg temperature:
Look for the following code in Configuration_adv.h
// Extruder cooling fans
// Configure fan pin outputs to automatically turn on/off when the associated
// extruder temperature is above/below EXTRUDER_AUTO_FAN_TEMPERATURE.
// Multiple extruders can be assigned to the same pin in which case
// the fan will turn on when any selected extruder is above the threshold.
//#define EXTRUDER_0_AUTO_FAN_PIN 11
//#define EXTRUDER_1_AUTO_FAN_PIN 11
//#define EXTRUDER_2_AUTO_FAN_PIN -1
//#define EXTRUDER_3_AUTO_FAN_PIN -1
//#define EXTRUDER_AUTO_FAN_SPEED 255 // == full speed

And second fan is used for cooling down the electronics. Look the following code in Configuration_adv.h
//This is for controlling a fan to cool down the stepper drivers
//it will turn on when any driver is enabled
//and turn off after the set amount of seconds from last driver being disabled again
//#define CONTROLLERFAN_PIN 6 //Pin used for the fan to cool controller (-1 to disable)
//#define CONTROLLERFAN_SECS 60 //How many seconds, after all motors were disabled, the fan should run
//#define CONTROLLERFAN_SPEED 255 // == full speed

More you can find here:

Oh very cool! Yea, I want to use one fan to cool the print, right now it's just hooked up directly to my powder supply. I'd also like to be able to control turning on and off some EL wire that I'm installing on the printer, just to make it look cool. Maybe two sets. One blue and one red. Have the red turn on when the fan is off and the blue turn on when it's on. I suppose I could use a DPDT relay for that. How much current can PIN6 and PIN11 supply?

Check the WiKi link, there is all the technical info. The board allow max 0.5A per channel.

Awesome thanks!

Hi, I have no experience but the ramp is 1.4 supports two extruders. Just to be in the firmware enter the configuration.h definition // 34 RAMPS = 1.3 / 1.4 (power outputs: Extruder0, Extruder1, Bed) // Heating will be involved at Fan


this must be the problem XD.. my board seems to be based on rapms 1.4 but I only have 4 step drivers..
I looked around a bit and found that it's called sanguinololu.. so, I'll definitely need another board :(

you can also try the stepper expander boards, i got myself this one


was small price difference between the x1 x2 x3 so yeah took the best one for future upgrade possibilities as well
thinking of the diamond hotend