by ianjohnson, published

FilaWinder by ianjohnson Nov 1, 2013
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FilaWinder by ianjohnson is licensed under the Creative Commons - Attribution license.

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This is a much more refined version of my winder for spooling home made filament. The filament drops from the extruder (ideally mounted vertically) and loops back up to the winder. At the bottom of the loop is a row of photocells with a laser shining on them. The photocells track the location of the filament's shadow and modify the speed of the spool to keep it in the same place, usually +/- about 2mm.

The filament passes through a 360 degree loop of PTFE tubing which adds just enough friction that the filament will be pulled tight as it winds on to the spool. When it comes out of the PTFE tube the filament passes through a guide operated by a servo, which spreads it across the width of the spool.

There is a switch to change between auto mode, (speed controlled by the sensors), and manual mode (speed controlled by the knob). When holding down the left button, the knob will move the guide to position it at its left limit, and the right button will do the same for the right limit.

While in manual mode the middle button puts the sensors in a calibration routine for 5 seconds. During calibration pass a piece of filament back and forth across the sensor, and it will record the values that let it detect when the shadow is present.

While the winder is running in Auto mode, holding the middle button will let you use the knob to set the current position of the guide, and whichever direction it traveled to get to that point is the direction it will continue as the spool turns.

In addition to STLs I have provided the board and schematic for the electronics, and the gerber files I used to order the PCBs from OSHPark.

The base is laser cut, but the drawings could potentially be used as a template for using a saw and drill. Accuracy isn't that critical, and the tab-and-slots could be replaced by angle brackets. The drawing for the wood is forthcoming.

This will be offered as a kit through Filastruder.com, hopefully around mid-Nov depending on how long it takes to get the assembled electronics in.



Detailed instructions are available at http://solidoodletips.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/winder-2/

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Are this all needes parts for the filawinder? So i just need to buy the electronic kit?

That is correct. Some of the remixes have alternatives to the laser cut parts if you don't have a way to get them made.

the lasercutted pieces are not included? Sry for my bad english.

The lasercut pieces are included with the full kit, but not the electronics kit. The electronics kit is the control board, arduino, sensor and the ribbon cable that connects the sensor to the control board.


Where is the line in firmware to adjust the speed ? Winder can't keep up with the extruder in Auto mode

guy you could provide some notice file Scad of drive_gear.stl? The screw plug is not working


Can I use a different servo motor ? For example this:
TowerPro MG996R 55g/ 11kg/ 0.14sec Metal Gear Servo

MG996R and SG-5010 ar same in size, just the first one has a metal gear, but the speed is 0.14s instead of 0.16.

Do I need to tweek any settings if I use any other one than 5010 ?

The servo moves in degrees, so any 180 degree servo should work the same.

Hello, what is the optimal distance between the Filastruder and winder for 3mm filament? And how far down does it need to drop?

It's better to go with this one - http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:288914

The fully printed version was a prototype, before I sourced the laser used in the kit. I never updated it because I changed to the laser cut mount. You can reproduce any of the laser cut pieces on a printer by taking the dxf and extruding it to about 6.5mm.

Filawinder laser sensor holder | parametric and customizable
by h0lger

How did you get the board and laser attached to this version ?
Laser hole is 2 times smaller then needed.
PTFE holes are 2 times more then needed
2 holes at the bottom for board screws ? There should only be 1.

Comments deleted.

in my setup i had problems with the motor gear: the screw severaltimes broke out: i made a more durable one: Thing 407981

Filawinder more durable Drive Gear
by Wessix

Do you have one for the motor mount and electronics ?
I would like to modify it to stand higher so i can put bigger spool..
Thanks !

I'm trying to get consistent result with NatureWorks® Ingeo™ 4032D PLA not yet using masterbatch to colour the extruded filament.

How well does the FilaWinder handle clear filament?

It works fine with clear. There is a calibration step where the sensor determines the lightest and darkest readings, so it can determine what the shadow looks like, however light it might be. It might be a good idea to shade the sensor from ambient light in that case, to make sure the the shadow isn't washed out.

Thanks for the fast reply Ian,

You have master stl?
My edit project LaserMount_v9.

I'm not sure what you are asking, but if you need an updated laser mount, someone made a printable version from the laser cut files here- http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:288914http://www.thingiverse.com/thi...

Filawinder laser sensor holder | parametric and customizable
by h0lger

You have master stl?
My modific progject LaserMount_v9.

Hmm, maybe combine a filabot and a printer...

I built this and i am impressed and a BIG SHOUT OUT to Ian, He is great I had a few issues with my build and he helped me through them all. I would highly recommend this to all of you that make your own filament well worth the money.

Just looked at the Filastruder form...Does the Support Bar.stl needs to be updated here?

Congratulations on your recent graduation and good job on the Filawinder.

Why is the kit soo expensive?

You can look at the BOM in the files list to get an idea of materials cost. In addition to the electronics and motors, there are a lot of other little things that add up. My cost is less, since I can spread the shipping over many kits. However along with material cost there is the time it takes to cut and grind rods, crimp ribbon cables, program and test the electronics, count everything out and bag the kits. I designed and built a testing PCB to check the boards from the assembler (https://www.dropbox.com/sc/qsl930sanuqncky/3LY2UY5C82)https://www.dropbox.com/sc/qsl... , which was time well spent since I found one with a backward diode and two arduinos that were DOA. I've spent a lot of money and time developing this since last February when I built Lyman's winder. It was only good for winding filament from the floor and still cost $80 to build. The Filastruder and the FilaWinder together are less expensive than any of the other extruders, and the ones that come with spools have winding solutions that are half-baked at best.

I think you did a great job on this, but it is just too much. the point of all this was to bring the cost of filament down. i would solder all my own components and hand cut my wood if it would bring it down past $75.

Its actually really cheap. Small-run assembled PCBs are pricey.

Just ordered a filament extriuder and was wondering where can I get the 2 PCB's so i can build this.

I don't wish to buy a kit, all i need is the pcb's, why can't you sell them as a pair kit??

the design files for the PCBs are on here if you want to get them made yourself.

Any idea when a kit or at least the boards will be available from filiatruder?

I'm only waiting on assembled electronics, which will probably come in late december. In the meantime I'm hand soldering about a dozen sets to try and get some early kits up, hopefully next week.

Sorry, been busy with Christmas. I am interested in getting a kit if possible. What is the price?

hi guy!
could you upload the circuit schematics ,please?

There are Eagle schematic and board files there (.sch and .brd) and also PDFs of the top copper, bottom copper, and silk screen.

One more question, the bom for the control board includes a mosfet and a voltage regulator. Which one goes where? I see two silkscreened images, on labeled M1. Does the Mosfet go on M1 and the regulator on the unmarked location?

That is correct, the regulator goes on the side near the two capacitors. When you put the hall effect sensor on, the writing should face the edge of the board. Then bend it down so the plain side faces up.

Anyone know an online source (or Houston, TX one for that matter) where I can get the parts laser cut? I have put a laser cutter on my wish list, but I don't see that appearing anytime soon. Help would be appreciated.

There is a hackerspace in Houston, http://txrxlabs.org/http://txrxlabs.org/ which has a laser cutter. Maybe they will do it for you. The material is white HDF, about 6.9mm thick.

Super cool. But I don't see a DXF or other 2-D file anywhere for the base that you drilled into. Was that manually done? It looks laser-cut. Have access to one at school and some scrap material, I'd love to prep everything.

Forgot those. DXF and CorelDraw uploaded.

Thanks! You super-rock.

PDFs are up. I did the silkscreen layer separate, because I'm not sure that it wouldn't overlap any of the copper. If you are doing toner transfer, you can apply it in toner after the copper is etched. I also replaced the BOM, the one I posted before was for a previous version and had a lot of unnecessary parts.

nice product so have you got pcb in pdf file ,please?

Thanks Ian! Boards ordered. I have 3 of each board coming. I only need one. Anyone interested in the extras?

hi datasmasher i 'm looking for a nice double side pcb filawinder .so if you have only 1 to buy send me your price and post price
i'm living in the south of france

I'm not getting any errors with the zips as downloaded. What is it telling you?

I have tried submitting the file packs to OSH Park, but I get an error each time I get past to the order option. Anyone else seeing this?

This looks much simpler that the original model. Any idea on the cost of a kit?

Exactly what Julia said. Very nice Ian!

Excellent! Makes filament-making much more appealing.

Very nice - well done