DKDGWi 3DPDK 3D Printer

by DarkDragonWing, published

DKDGWi 3DPDK 3D Printer by DarkDragonWing Feb 17, 2017
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These parts have been upgraded:
They will need 2x eBay Amazon 8x12x3.5mm Metal Shielded Bearing MR128-ZZ (for Z lead screw top mounts)

You may need to use super glue to glue around the bearings to make them stay.

These parts have been upgraded:
They will need 2x eBay Amazon GE4E 4x12x5mm Spherical Bearing

You may need to use super glue to glue around the bearings to make them stay.

This part has been upgraded, and it needs 25% support:
DKDGWi 3DPDK Cable Carrier X Carriage 1.stl

This part has been upgraded to be stronger:
DKDGWi 3DPDK Cable Carrier X Carriage 2.stl

This part has been upgraded to be stronger:


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DKDGWi 3DPDK 3D Printer


  • Big build volume 210x270x225mm (XYZ).
  • Auto mesh leveling.
  • Babystepping, adjust Z height in real time while printing.
  • Can adjust Z offset accordingly to Babystepping and select store memory in LCD.
  • Has easy cable carrier system.


  • Needs a clip that only clamps 4mm or less into the bed to get that 210mm in X.

Watch assembling videos here:
DIY Fix | Mackey's 3D Printer Modify 2
DIY Fix | Mackey's 3D Printer Modify 3

Designed to be printed at 0.2mm layer height.

Z Axis Frame Assembly has to be changed from 165mm to 155mm.

Highly recommend ABS for printer parts.
How to print ABS:

  1. You have to make a box for the printer, and inside the box should be about 60C.
  2. Prepare the bed. Mix 100g of acetone with 1m of 1.75mm ABS filament to make ABS juice.
  3. Use Foam Poly Brush to apply a thin film of ABS juice to the bed.
  4. You are ready to print ABS.
  5. Avoid ABS shrinkage. After the print is done, don't open your printer's box yet, leave the print to cool down inside until the bed is at about 50C or less. After the bed is at 50C or less, remove the print, and there you have it!

Fill Density 5% for:

Fill Density 25% for all other parts.

Parts that need brim:

Parts that need 15% support:

Part that needs 25% support:
DKDGWi 3DPDK Cable Carrier X Carriage 1.stl

Parts that need duplication:
2x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Y_Axis_Belt_Idler_Washer.stl
2x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Y_Axis_Belt_Idler_Pulley.stl
36x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Cable_Carrier_X_Carriage_01_02_03_05_06.stl
23x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Cable_Carrier_X_Carriage_2.stl
4x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Cable_Carrier_X_Carriage_04.stl
18x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Cable_Carrier_Bed_01_02_03.stl
16x DKDGWi_3DPDK_Cable_Carrier_Bed_2.stl


  • Use "DKDGWi_3DPDK_X_Carriage_1mm_Gap_Gauge.stl" to set a gap between the nozzle and the proximity sensor.
  • Use some foam from the foam brush for the dust filter.
  • Sensor wiring from top to bottom: BLACK - BLUE - BROWN
  • Make sure the countersinks on the bed are good so the screws won't be pushing the glass up causing uneven bed.

Printer info:
E-Steps: 94.4962144
Width: 210
Depth: 270
Height: 225
Firmware: Marlin RC8

Required Item(s):

Pick one 3D printer to start off with:
1x eBay Amazon HICTOP 3D Printer Aluminum Frame 24V
1x eBay GearBest Athorbot A01 3D Printer Aluminum Frame 24V

1x eBay Amazon LJ18A3-8-Z/BX Proximity Sensor 8mm DC 6-36V NPN NO
1x eBay Amazon 2S JST-XH Connector Adapter Plug
2x eBay Amazon Timing Belt Tensioner Spring
1x eBay Amazon V6 Heat Sink
1x eBay Amazon V6 Throat 4.1mm Through
1x eBay Amazon Extruder 0.4mm Nozzle 1.75mm
1x eBay Amazon V6 Fan Case
3x eBay Amazon 30mm x 10mm 24V Fan
2x eBay Amazon 2p Spring Connector
1x eBay Amazon PTFE Teflon Tube 2MM ID 4MM OD For 1.75MM Filament
1x eBay Amazon M3 x 8mm Set Screw for locking Teflon tube
1x Menards 3/32" T x 10" W x 12" L Clear Glass Sheet
1x eBay Amazon 10mm Kapton Tape
1x eBay Amazon Aluminum Y Carriage Anodized Plate Upgrade V2
1x eBay Amazon SC8UU 8mm Linear Ball Bearing
4x eBay Amazon M3 Thumb Nut
2x eBay Amazon Brass T8 Anti-Backlash Spring Loaded
8x eBay Amazon M3 x 12mm Nut & bolt (for Brass T8 Anti-Backlash Spring Loaded)
2x eBay Amazon 8x12x3.5mm Metal Shielded Bearing MR128-ZZ (for Z lead screw top mounts)
2x eBay Amazon GE4E 4x12x5mm Spherical Bearing

4x eBay Amazon Linear Bearings LM8UU 8MM
4x eBay Amazon Build Platform Glass Retainer
7x eBay Amazon JST Plug Pair

eBay Amazon Loctite Nut & Bolt Threadlocker 242 BLUE
Harbor Freight 4 Pc Adjustable Wrench Set
Harbor Freight 5 in. Curved Jaw Locking Pliers
Harbor Freight 4.8 Volt 1/4 in. Cordless Screwdriver Kit
Harbor Freight 36 Pc 3 in. Screwdriver Bit Set
Harbor Freight Glass Cutter
eBay Amazon J-B Weld 33106 0.2 oz. Superweld Super Glue, Clear

Arduino for editing/updating firmware
Cura 15.04.6 for coding 3D parts
FreeCAD for designing 3D parts

More Photos

Other info:


  • Problem: If your HICTOP printer is making random weird moves and shutting down when using SD card, it means that part of the LCD screen is touching the metal piece that is touching the Y step motor. If you have the old LCD screen that is all metal, you will have this problem. For your information, HICTOP now provides the metal cover that comes with plastic nuts to separate the LCD screen and the metal cover to fix this problem.
  • Solution: Remove the LCD screen from the printer frame and put it aside. Avoid the LCD ribbon wires touching the step motor wires.

Main Board

  • Problem: From April 2017, HICTOP now has a built-in SD card reader on the main board. Thus, the SD card reader on the LCD is no longer usable.
  • Solution: Buy eBay Amazon MKS Base V1.5 3D Printer Controller Board to replace it.

Loud Converter

  • If your converter's fan is making a loud noise, simply replace the fan with a new one here eBay Amazon 24V 60x60x15mm Fan.

Uneven Bed ABS

  • Problem: If you experience uneven bed when printing ABS out of nowhere, in this case the proximity sensor's temperature matters. If the sensor is cool during the preheat, given that the X carriage is 100mm or more above the bed, when the sensor is doing G29 or probing the bed, the cool sensor will get warmer and warmer throughout the bed and the sensor will give out inaccurate numbers as its temperature changes.
  • Solution: Do Auto Home, and then preheat ABS. In this case the sensor should be about 15mm above the bed and getting warmed up by the bed's temperature. Once the sensor starts to prob the bed, its temperature shouldn't change wildly and it should give out accurate numbers.

PLA Clogging Nozzle, Heat Creep

  • Problem: PLA keeps clogging at the throat even with new nozzle and new throat.
  • Solution 1: Don't use these fan ducts, only use them when printing ABS:
  • Solution 2: If it's still clogging, check the heat sink cooling fan, you may need to replace it.
  • Solution 3: If it's still clogging, try blowing cool air through the printer.
  • Solution 4: If it's still clogging, try printing at lower temperature like 200C or 190C.
  • Solution 5: If it's still clogging, throw away your filament, and buy a better quality filament.

Proximity sensor

  • Problem: Proximity sensor wire(s) get broken inside. After a while these wires do get broken especially around the extruder flexing (the first curve).
  • Problem: It might even be serious like it would actually blow up your main board.
  • Solution: Buy new proximity sensor.

Heat drops randomly

  • Problem: Heat drops and the printer stops.
  • Solution: Check the heat sensor wires, they might be broken inside somewhere.

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Kuhn Mackey - I double checked the plug on the control board and it is correct. Interesting that when I contact the x limit switch slowly I can still grind the stepper, but travel in the opposite direction is disabled. I also get an "Endstops X" message on the LCD. I installed my limit switch in the same orientation as your photos. Any ideas?

Also feel free to add photos on here so we can take a look at how your plugs are plugged in. It would be helpful.

Here are two photos of my board and cable connectors. Checked everywhere and all seems correct. Also sent an M43 command to the board and it does register the limit switch function. It just responds in the wrong (reversed) way. I have been using this machine successfully for several months. Wonder if I should just try reloading your firmware?

I see. Yes, try the firmware again. If it's still not working, you can try edit/reverse the switch in the firmware.

Change these in Configuration.h

// Mechanical endstop with COM to ground and NC to Signal uses "false" here (most common setup).
define X_MIN_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Y_MIN_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Z_MIN_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define X_MAX_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Y_MAX_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Z_MAX_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Z_MIN_PROBE_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi

// Mechanical endstop with COM to ground and NC to Signal uses "false" here (most common setup).
define X_MIN_ENDSTOP_INVERTING false // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Y_MIN_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Z_MIN_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define X_MAX_ENDSTOP_INVERTING false // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Y_MAX_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Z_MAX_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi
define Z_MIN_PROBE_ENDSTOP_INVERTING true // set to true to invert the logic of the endstop. // DKDGWi

k, I reloaded my old firmware and I still had the problem. There must be something wrong in my wiring.

I still had the problem after reloading your firmware. I made the changes you describe above and I still have the problem, only now the stepper will only move in the negative direction (moving the cross head towards the stepper). It will not move in the positive direction, before or after the end stop is triggered. I'm going to reload my old firmware the see if the problem persists.

I see. Yes, the default firmware is already good then. I agree, must be an electrical problem, bad switch or bad connection somewhere.

  1. Check the X stepper motor plug on the main board.
  2. Check X stepper motor plug on the motor. There is a slight chance that this is where some wires got switched. Look in the photos for reference.

thanks, I will double check. I thought I kept close track of what goes where, but I guess anything is possible ;-) One other question: I noticed that the clip you designed for the plug to the bed heater cable does not seem to fit my printer. Did Hictop change their design?

I believe they changed it. You will have to trim it or tape it up.

Hello! I just finished printing and installing all of these great upgrades. I am very happy with the quality of the build - thanks for your great work! I am having a small glitch I was wondering if you could help me with: after loading the firmware I found that my x axis limit switch is being "ignored" by the printer. The cross carriage just happily crashes into the z axis bearing holder and the stepper does not stop. I checked the function of the limit switch and it is still good. The y axis limit switch is behaving normally. What should I check next?

Make sure to plug the X switch on the right place on the main board.

Hello i have noticed my mesh level is working in reverse. Closing the tolerance on the tight side and opening the tolerance on the loose side. Using the test bed stl. Have you ran into this?

You mean the bed is uneven? One side is perfect and the other side is too low? You can use Kapton tape to tape under the too low side (under the glass). Tape until the glass is high enough to equal to the other side.

No. If you watch the z screws adjust for mesh level during the print, they are moving the wrong way. Where the bed is high it moves the nozzle closer and where the bed is low it moves the nozzel away. It should be opposite

Sorry, I didn't check back. Is it fine now? I'm still convinced that if you use Kapton tape, it would fix your problem. Tape under the glass "where the bed is low" and see how it goes.

Just wondering if you have a x carriage design for a bowden extruder?

Hi. No, I don't have one for bowden setup.

If I make these parts in PLA, do I need to increase the fill density?

yes, I understand - thanks for all of your good work!

No need to, but then you can't print ABS because the temp will melt all the PLA parts.

Sorry to bother you again. Can you do me a favor if you have the time? I want to know the total length of the printer (including cable chain) at min and max position on the Y-axis.

No problem. That would be 26.5 inches.

How do you have your sensor wired using 24v? Do you have a step-down transformer to regulate power to 12v before using the resistor method or is the load enough to get the voltage low enough that it doesn't burn out the z-axis port? I'm asking because I'm currently stuck at this point and don't wan to ruin the board by applying too much power to the terminal.

I use proximity sensor. It has 3 wires. I just connect it just like that, no need for anything else. The sensor can be used with 6-36V.

I've looked at the schematics for the board and the input voltage for the sensor. The input voltage is 6-36vdc but the particular part you're pulling voltage from is 5vdc. How are you getting it to work? I've metered it several times. I work and have a degree in automation and everything I know in life is telling either that sensor is incredibly unreliable, if it's running at all.

I don't mean to sound standoffish, I'm impressed it works and was wondering if you were pulling power from elsewhere.

No problem. It works just like that. Just make sure to get the one with blue back cover. I bought the one with brown back cover once, it didn't work on aluminum, that one only detects magnet.

That's the sensor I have. I tried for giggles to just hoom it up like yours and dud. I jumped it out on my psu and it worked so my sensor is good. You just won the sensor lottery lol.

I have a step-down transformer coming in the mail that can attach to the extrusions so I'll get it working, come Hell or high water.

Hey guys, I don't have the metal L bracket for the Y Motor mount. Any good STL's out there? Having a hard time finding one.


hi,thanckyou for this because by this I have printed v8 engine

Do you have the raw file for the sensor adapter part. I am going to use the BLtough sensor for the bed leveling and would need to modified the part for that sensor. This would make it easer to modify the part, I will be using Fusion.
Thanks, Luis

I use FreeCAD. I uploaded the raw file there, first file, I will delete it after you got it. You can export it to anything you want. Cheers

Started printing the parts today :)

Awesome! Glad to hear!

Great job!!! I am thinking in modifying my HICTOP printer using you modification. What type threaded rods did you printer came with? My printer is about one year old and its time to upgrade.
Again, great WORK :)

Thank you! Those are M8295mm(031in11.61in) screw rods. Cheers

please could you upload the old fan system because i got all the old fans then you did the update and i now have the big fans and no where to use them

Hi. Sorry, this one is much better. You could sell those ones or keep them for future use.

I have recently done many of your mods, and then uploaded your firmware. In the bed leveling, it was going off the bed to the right and not far enough to the left. I had to make some changes to make it work. You might want to check it out.

You will also have to upgrade the DKDGWi_HICTOP_3DPDK_Z_Lead_Screw_Carriage_R and DKDGWi_HICTOP_3DPDK_Z_Lead_Screw_Carriage_L.

Yes, I have done all of your modifications. The only ones I have not done are the cable chains.

It looks like you extended the Z height? What rods and such did you buy if so? Thank you for all of your hard work. I really appreciate you sharing this with everyone.

Nevermind, I see what was done now. I just was not seeing the new mounts for the Z motors.

Anyone not wanting to cut their own glass, I visited my local lumberyard/hardware store and they cut me the exact size piece for $2.33 each. I had them do 3 (so I can take one off let it cool while starting the next print).

Ok I must be doing some thing wrong I update the software and upload it to the printer then I try to to a auto home and it then test the first point on board front left then it starts going to the middle point but it then goes all the way to the right and then off the edge I will try again to reload the software but do you have any ideas where I'm going wrong
Just to confirm that you are plugging the the sensor in to the same port on the board as the old green one that was on the back yes

As I'm trying to make my printer like your one

His config is offset by 43 in the y and i think maybe 25 in the x due to his mounting and homing position. i got it working yesterday and had to make a few changes due to this , i suggest turning down the probing speed until you get it correct i also altered the bi-liner grid position to suit my needs still need to make a few changes to make it correct but at least its working , if you need a copy of the configuration.h file let me know

Hi. Did you figure it out?

no would you think the upgrade parts would be ok in pla as having trouble with abs at the moment
on the stock printer

Yes, PLA would be good for PLA printing. I used to use PLA too, and tried my best to print ABS parts from it. If you have an enclosure for the printer, make sure to keep the inside from getting too hot.

no enclosure yet just trying to do your upgrades but just knot having much luck I've been through so many sensor I've lost count just to see the glass looks like the only one that sees glass is a ljc18a-h-z/bx and works on 5v

For the stock one, it will not see through glass since the detection is only 4mm. The one I use has the detection distance of 8mm. If you are using all stock setup, I would suggest not to use any modification. If your printer is originally not AUTO BED LEVELING, I would guess that it won't work with a proximity sensor unless you do some changes in the firmware.

how can i set the home position back to normal

You will need a stock firmware to do that. Update your board with stock firmware.

Hi I have the 3dp08 Hictop 3d printer does it have different software i dont have some of the options on my lcd screen that you have. or are you using a different software thanks

Hi. Yes, you can update your board by using the firmware included in the Thing Files. Watch the video on how to update the firmware. Cheers

Hey bud, would it be possible to get the X Carriage file as well please. Want to go over to bowden system,
Trying to remove as much weight as possible from the X axis, :)



btw, i have done all other mods, cable chains, spool holder etc etc, and they are great. Could i add a little note, I made a custom double bearing holder for the Y axis, (i had alignment issues, and warping, so had to brace my bed, hence custom bearing holders)
Not only does the double bearing holder keep both bearings in perfect alignment, it reduces a little weight from the Y axis :) . just printing out a LM8LUU holder for it now.
I will however be upgrading to an aluminum bed soon, so i will have to remake those bearing holders back to a more stock shape, but could give you those files once done to include in your already awesome package?

hi , have you thought about a filament runout sensor upgrade
as I'm new to printing and i leave my printer running whilst I'm at work and it would be great to not have prints ruined because the filament had runout

Hi. I'm sure you can add one and turn on the option in the firmware. I usually keep track on the print weight and weigh the spool before printing. I'll keep it in mind to try to add one. Cheers

Hi, thanks for the file. it may take me a while to modify as i havent used a cad package for many years. thanks again.

Hi, Thanks for all the work on the hictop 3dp.
Would it be possible to have the CAD file for the X carriage so i could have a bowden out to a ED3 Titan instead of the extruder on the top of the X carriage.

Hi. I will upload the file for you right now. I will take it off after you got it. Cheers

Is there a specific version of Arduino that I should use? I have heard that version 1.6.0 works the best.

Not sure. I just use the one that came with the printer.

how did you get the bed sensor to work as I cant get my one to work because the input is only 5v and it is not enough to power the sensor correct

If your sensor has a brown back cover, it will not work. Make sure to buy the one with blue back cover. Also make sure it is NO NPN 8mm.

my sensor is a lj18a3-8-z/bx it has a blue tip and a blue back part with the red led in it but dose not work

Check the connections. Try to put a metal piece in front of it to test it. Do you have the same printer as mine?

Yes same printer 3dp12
Did you do something in the software to make it work

I purchased this printer recently. Would you be able to design a dual extruder for this printer?

Hi. I'm not sure if I will have time to make one, but I will keep it in mind.

i brought the same printer because you made it look so good
could you upload your old sensor bracket as I'm very new to 3d printing and want to do upgrades bit by bit
plus i noticed that your bed levelling dose about 20plus points and my one only dose 9
also could you also upload the grid print you used to check the bed level

Hi. Yes, I will add them to the Thing Files now.

thanks very much
is there any info on the 20point plus leverling points your printer dose

No problem. Yes, this is the one. There is a firmware in Thing Files that you can download. Watch the video for a full instruction.

can i add,

you dont need to cut the servo lead.

one of these works as an extension,


a simple jst-xh balance charge lead normally used for charging lipo batteries :)

Thank you very much DarkDragonWing :) It looks like you've made some really nice changes and upgrades!
A few of my components have came in today and I've begun printing some parts out!

I'll be keeping my eyes out for your new video and pass questions this way if I get lost haha!
Your help and your design is fantastic!

Very excited to start the mods

How do the fans mount to the X-Axis?

I'm making a video of it right now. I'll give you the link to it once it's done.

Hello!!! I love this build! I'm hoping to do the modifications with my printer using your files. Is that okay? Is there a way I could contact you for any assembly questions?

Hi. I'm glad you like it. Yes, You can use them. You can message me here.

And still the fundamental flaws ! Gee !
The cables are well guided, better then the rest.