My massively overbuilt printer

by Feist92 Aug 18, 2013
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Super rigid frame and impossible to have a loose movement or vibration.... wait, are these ZIPTIES on the bearings? oh gosh...

They say that when the nuclear bombs fall and mankind is extinct, only cockroaches will remain... and now this printer will remain too :D

It's so hilariously solid, it looks like you've used 10mm plate for most parts. I'm sure that gantry could carry a small car without breaking a sweat, but you're using it to move around <500g of printer carriage, hehehe. Excellent work! I love it!

Over-engineered as you say, but great work! I especially like the use of the flat-bottom v-blocks + ziptie for mounting the linear bearings; I used that technique a few years ago on a Prusa Mendel x-carriage hack. More recently, I used it for all the axes of my soon to be released Mendel90 derivative.

Oh i get it! This is the first off-road 3D printer. Bad ass printer man. Makes me smile when i see all that aluminum bolted together.

And you didn't post a video? Come on!

Id like to thank everyone for the kind comments they are greatly appreciated. For those asking for the files please know that I did not design this with the intention for anyone else to build it. As such It is vastly over engineered in that every part was made on either a mill or lathe and made more complicated just to prove that i could. Also because this is essentially a 1st prototype there are things that i would do differently so id strongly advise you use my printer as inspiration for something much better instead of trying to replicate it

I would like to build one of these. Please send me your plans for this. The is really strong and stable looking. Great design!

Hi, any chance to upload missing files?

Absolutely awesome, I'm very impressed. I read that you were 18 when you designed this. Outstanding work. Kind regards, Aaron.

I got really inspired by your design, it's a great job for your age that time.
BTW, sldasm files are useless when you don't pack them with all supporting sldprt files. Please reupload all files in a zip.
Thanks and good luck

Hi, terrific job. It speaks for itself. I see by a previous comment that you have always been fascinated by engineering. I recall reading/viewing a youtube video on how an individual decribed all of the steps he took to design/make/test his own 3d printer. He described the whole "engineering process". For example, he simulated in MATHLAB the trade offs for heat resistor placement versus heat bed temperature uniformity. Cost, parts availability etc. were also considered. I'm retired (B.S. Physics 1969, M.Sc. Applied Math 2009) from 40 years working in a wide variety of engineering capacities, so it was apparent that this Youtube (or it may have been an Instructable topic) was " a resume" and quite an effective one. I became a home computer hobbiest before anyone heard of any such thing. I got a little TTL design, 8008 & 4000 micro experience and my experience snowballed from there resulting in better and better positions until I spent my last 25 years at at a AeroSpace company. At Math grad school, my self picked project was to do differential error analysis of a PUMA 500 robot using Denavit-Hartenberg Homogeous transformations and MonteCarlo simulations in MATLAB.
One of my current 3D-Printer Hobby activities is to do the same type of error analysis for a XYZ Cartesian robot, i.e. 3D-Printer. This is a prelude to examining the feasibility of having a 3D-printer with a much larger print volume than my current Solidoodle Gen-3 . This has a 8" cube build volume. Once again, you did a wonderful job. Best of wishes.

This is the most AWESOME build I've seen on a 3D printer!!! I Love how you used the 'H' design for one of the axes!
I've been wanting to do a very similar design to this, but as high as a Rostock.
You said that you used Mach3 for controlling, What slicer program do you use? Kisslicer?

Thanks very much. Im now using Kisslicer which so far im very happy with. I tried slic3r for a long time but there are a lot of things it will not print no matter what you do to it

I am an engineer and I must say that this is a fantastic work not only for your age but altogether!

Wow thanks, I've been obsessed with engineering for as long as I can remember so your comment is most appreciated

What about infilling the frame with concrete? I guess that would make this beast even more solid.

Now there's an idea, it could do with a bit more weight behind it :D

Two words; Epoxy granite.

There is a index-thread to the whole "way down the rabbithole-thread" over at cnczone:

Love your build btw, especially the moar part.

Thanks for the compliment and for the link. Im thinking about making a fairly large CNC mill out of epoxy granite. Im not sure if I can pull the trigger at this stage but its something I would rather like to do

This could print a lot more quick than usual 3d printer !!!
Thanks for sharing !

Cheers glad you like it

WOW!!! How much did you spend on it?

Surprisingly not tooo much. I think it ended up around 250 nzd. Most of the ally was from a scrap dealer, the motors were pulled from a couple of photo copiers and the psu was from an old pc. So really the main cost was the stepper drivers and the random hardware I couldnt scrounge up

Very cool! What kind of build area did you end up with?

Thanks mate. Its around 180mm cube