AO-100 Dual Material Setup

by sjkelly, published

AO-100 Dual Material Setup by sjkelly Aug 16, 2012
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AO-100 Dual Material Setup by sjkelly is licensed under the GNU - GPL license.

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For the past 3 weeks we have been working on improving and expanding the capabilities of the AO-100 from Aleph Objects.
We noticed a few areas that could be improved. After loosing the Z axis alignment a few times, we started experiencing really bad wobble. Like really really bad. I think this is from flexing the x ends too far, but even after loosening and realigning we still experienced it. We found brass bushings and designed a mount so that the end of the bushing is at the same height as the nozzle. I remembered from a comment on http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:4740 how keeping the bushings at the same level as the nozzle would ensure the nozzle can rotate, but not translate, therefore reducing wobble. We also used nophead's coupler from http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:9622. In hind sight I would have printed the one from the Mendel90.

Next task was to add support for dual materials. Our original plan was to use two eMinebea motors (http://store.trinitylabs.com/trinitylabs-micro-extruder-gearhead-motor-and-options/). Since the consensus on their functionality is mixed, we went with a mirrored jonas'-greg's-wade. We designed a simple carriage with two fans and the extruders rotated. Using slic3r 0.8.4 and dob71's Marlin fork (https://github.com/dob71/Marlin) we were able to get dual materials working pretty well. Our original hope was to use PVA and ABS. There is very little data available about printing with PVA, so we were surprised (and a little frustrated :P) to find out PVA and ABS do not stick together. We are currently looking into other options such as PLA/ABS and ABS/PEO. If you have anymore info about sacrificial support for ABS, please let me know!

Edit: I forgot the SCAD's for the x carriage and lower x bushing. will upload tomorrow.

I would like to give a big thanks to Mill-Max Mfg for letting me open source this work. On that note, if you are interested in more info about our setup, please find me on IRC (sjkelly) or email me. Don't contact Mill-Max, they make really nice electronic headers and things(made in the USA!), not RepRaps... :D


You will need to mirror the Aleph Objects spool mount and the Greg's Wade reloaded. I have included the mirrored and repaired files from Netfabb. Print one of the X carriage. Assemble like the other extruder. Use shimmy_shim_shim to adjust the vertical heights of the nozzles so they are even. We printed at 0.2mm height with .25mm nozzle and were able to get really close to even. We then print the nozzle_align.gcode (written for 0.25mm nozzles, so scale up the e values for large nozzles). We measure, reflash firmware, print, and repeat until perfect in X and Y alignment. We like to print http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:4360 to calibrate our support. We are using red ABS and black ABS in the picture. Our alignment is good so there is no sag.

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Hello, I'm testing your setup and it works nicely. I just posted a fan mount (see under your thing's derivatives) to rotate the fans by 90° as I needed them for extruder cooling.

I'm using Slic3r 0.9.4-dev which includes a dead-simple workflow for multimaterial printing (see https://github.com/alexrj/Slic3r/wiki/Multiple-extruders)https://github.com/alexrj/Slic... and stock Marlin_v1 firmware - no need to use Marlin forks anymore as the main branch contains everything we need now.


That is awesome! Thanks again for all your work. I will be sure to check it out.

Hi, we have done a new version of the X clamp inspired by your upgrade. It is available here:


It will be a standard part in the AO-101 when that is ready. It uses the existing pillow block and doesn't require new vitamins.



Any reason that you chose to go with a 12mm hole and different brass bushing instead of sticking with the 16mm hole so standard Self centering bushings could be used?

We had those brass bushing on hand. It is easy to enlarge the hole. I think the main issue isn't the type of bushings; the igus are fine. The main issue is the location.

I've had trouble getting ABS and PVA to play well together too. However, I've had some success with PVA and PLA: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:12342http://www.thingiverse.com/thi...

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