As long as u don't profit from it, please share, and adapt as u see fit.
This printer is designed especially for students.
No 3D printer in the world is so portable, it fits in a laptop-bag,
and can be build under 300€. The most expensive parts are: rails, extruder parts, electronics board & power supply.
this printer can be assembled out of wood, plastic or metal, but i originally tried to design it so every part would be 3D printable.
Except for the linear axles, a threaded rod, 4 stepper motors, some screws, bolts, washers, wiring, and electronics, i succeeded.
Maybe an idea for ESA/NASA ... takes up less space & weight on the way up :-p
Work in progress:
- I plan to use an Android smartphone of some sorts in the future too communicate and control the printer. It would also go on the back, in clips that pivot, facing backwards, and fold open until its next to the printer facing forward. that would allow for a 50-70€ stand-alone, wireless, 3G enabled, schoolworthy 3D printer Host.
Android apps are easyly build, managed and learned, and a smartphone has usb to communicate with the printers Arduino-based electronics board. So why not.
"If u can imagine it, u can make it"
If this reaches 100 LIKES, i'll crowdfund it. So please SHARE.*
Special thankx to
for redrawing & printing the gears of the bed lift.
UPDATE as of 27/03/2015, Foldie has no sideplates anymore.
the benefits of our new design eliminated the sideplates.
Instead, foldie has now a Foldie-worthy foldable constuction at her sexy bottom sides, wich locks her firmly into place when opened.
Her brandnew designed, multi-diameter spool holders,
are the magnetic-locking crown on the design.
take a look at her drawings, next week we'll post some new edition pics.
UPDATE as of 19/08/2015
In order 2 improve stability while printing, Foldie's extruder motor goes on the back from now on (like ultimaker, reprap,...). the extruder motor movements on top proved too rough for a lightweight plastic frame.
Last but not least:
Foldie is COMPLETELY* printed in BIODEGRADABLE PLA.
Please only use ABS if necessary.
Think Green ;) i don't want my Thing to pollute the planet any further. on the contrary. i spent several months! researching suppliers eco footprint, calculating power usage and what not. Please carry on the trend.
UPDATE as of 19/01/2016
Several boards are being tested now the frame is sturdy & ready.
Power supplies are considered and tested.
Nylon support for heated beds is being tested.
Inquiries have been made for a sheet metal alu model.
As soon as the board satisfies me, i'll show a vid of Foldie printing...
UPDATE 21/03/2017 It seems to be a point of anoyment, to manually re-calibrate the bed, each time, after foldie has been mobile. So i thought of a solution, what woke me up mid-night, only to discover online, i wasn't the first;
The hotend is mounted on a slightly flexible mount, which presses upwards, when touching the bed, closing the Z-endstop right above it, what, in turn, allows for non-capacitive, low-cost, multi-point, printbed calibration, each time after a power up, after the print-command is given.
The bed has gotten aluminium u-profile bed support.
This to account for the slight flexibility in printable polymers, wich would be nefast for a bed-support.
some axle rails are replaced with Igus products, in order to win space, reduce weight, and reduce cost.
Yaxle glides on HIWIN
Xaxle glides on IGUS
Zaxle glides on IGUS
In the last update we stated that the Z would have IGUS rails. It won't.
the directional torque of the horizontal bed on the vertical slide proved too much for smooth movement. It has been re-equipped with the Rods and LMUU06's bearings.
The actual update; the transmission of the CoreXY is done by fishing silk.
Not a nylon infused belt. they were heavy, wide, and their resistance when bending and stretching had effect on the small operating space. The fishing silk is relatively cheap, (less then toothed belts/mtr) UnBeLieVeaBle Strong, doesnt stretch, in comparison too belts, is relatively naturally produced in mothfarms, biodegradable, and commonly available. Also, it withstands time when not in operation. The silk on our prototype was my dad's. He taught me too look for answers too problems in nature. He's not here anymore, but his 30 yr old fishing silk, is still as good as new. And does wonders. Thnx dad. And thank you moth's.
The silk does not slip around the motor's pulleys because they are 3d printed in TPU (flex filament).
UPDATE 12th of april 2018
Happy like a kid on christmasmorning. Our Printed Foldie exceeds all expectations.
Fast, extremely accurate, 0.05mm on x&y!! and as stable as an I3.
Vid coming soon, I'm not a cameraman, it appears...
We will revise the most expensive parts, like the controller board, in the hopes of bringing you a more affordable, capable, 1board solution for any 3D printer.
Our goal here is to create the next "RAMPS" along with Foldie. In the same pricerange, but on a single board.
UPDATE 2nd of may 2018
Currently looking at the new controller design,
So far it is a 32bit controller board, similar to the Duet range.
This because we appriciate the cost effectiveness of this pocessor architecture, in comparison to the 8bit 2560 architecture.
Main diffrence is has basic USB connectivity and an phone/app or PC/host to control it and expandability for BT or WiFi connectivity, where the existing DuetWiFi UI takes over and allows for simultaneously controlling printer, and surfing for printables.
It eliminates the cost and config of the whole LCD Display story too.
The second main point is that is is a single-extruder board. This mainly out of financial considerations. But also cause there is no competent, compact, affordable, and legit single-extruder starter board out there. (chinese usb drivers and closed source designs dont count in my book, & dual boards are too thick to still fit in a laptopbag)
When starting with 3D Printing, its gonna take a whole lot of time before you mastered enough experience to even try dual color anyway. The fact is that it takes a lot of understanding of the technology to print dualcolor succesfully. So, making a controller board more expensive by adding multiple extruder-components on the board, seemed costly for no good reason. Expansions allow it tho. Foldie isnt really intended for DC printing anyway. That doesnt mean that there aint no idea too make that a reality. There is an empty space for another extruder motor on the back, and expansionPins on the board for a reason. Its just costly in time to work out this 'better system' then the current ones. The trick would be in the printhead and the slicer. As for the minimalist functionality, the board does have more then enough expansionpins. As with most boards, we didnt wanted to deprive makers from any hacking option.
Also, the board is supposed to be a cost effective single board replacement for the RAMPS family, adding options that are perfectly accomodated by existing boards would be redundant, and make the board fall out of the financial capacity range of our main public: students..
The board will have the ability to be powered by the 12 to 24v range.
It also has the ability to make use of a separate 5v Power supply. This to avoid the damage of the voltage stabilizing chip on the stepper driver when emergency stop(reset) is hit.
In the time that it takes to finish the board into an endproduct,
We are setting up the website; foldie3d.com
We are aquiring all media. Photosessions, video, and editing is harder then it looks :s
Printed files are made ready(uploaded, described, equipped with pics, and printing info)
The assembly manual for the printer is being made.
UPDATE 11 June 2018
Previous update stated the controllerboard would have onboard wireless capability;BT
This has been revised to an Optional BT module, again, to keep costs down.
Initially we intended for smartphones too control the printer over USB, immediately adding WiFi/BT/3Ginternet capability.
So adding wireless to our board,
-is again, costly for no good reason,
-still optional by adding modules on the expansions
-And redundant, cause its big brother board has all that and more.
UPDATE 11 june 2018
I just noticed, i never mentioned Foldie has a magnetic quick release extruder assembly.
I'll post some pics later, but it enables the printer too remove its printhead before folding up, and one can change extruder heads in about 30 sec flat. No more pliers, cramped positions, and messing around to change a nozzle, or fix a clog.
*mag-struder-assembly pics uploaded. Let it be noted that the tiny fan will be replaced by directional 4040 fans. The extruder assembly holds 12! small, round magnets, wich make sure the extruder doesnt backslash.
UPDATE 5th of sep 2018
While the 32bit controller board makes us work weekends,
A small donation allowed us to quickly but succesfully test a more cost effective part solution.
A huge thanks to minotaur85 for that!
-LM6UU's are replaced with PTFE(teflon) coated bushings.
-they are more cost effective
-LM*UU's balls travell inside the bearing in an oval motion, and each change of ball switch gave irregularities and make the Z less accurate. 0.2 heights were reasonable with LM6UU bearings, anything less resulted in uneven layer heights, because of the "jumping" of the balls in the bearing..
-the bushings are smaller then LM6UU linear bearings,
-the bushings are lighter, 6.5gr(LM6UU) against 2.8gr(x2 for each side)reducing total weight with 7.4gr. again,
-they allow sliding Z motion, accurate up to 0.05mm. On a frikkin 3dprinted frame printer. To be honest, even i, the maker, didnt expect awesome results like this.
I printed a gear for a watch in 4layer heights of 0.05, and at its thinnest point, the caliper said 0.2mm. If that moment would have been caught by a 4K cam, you could have seen the unbelief on my face, me taking of the caliper, and closing it to check if its properly set to "0", measuring it again, seeing me think for a moment, and then smile like a kid on christmasmorning. And i'll be sharing that joy with you soon.
Normally the controller should have been in prototype fase now.
But, we figured out a way to make it more cost effective(cheaper) without really loosing capabilities. In short,i made some 'luxuries' optional, in the form of expansion modules.Ex.1) Like the heatbed. on our size bed, its absolutely retardedly redundant to have a heated bed when u have sanded surface borosilicate printbed and a simple gluestick. Ex.2) since we have an app that can control the printer over usb and a wireless expansion module, with existing Duet UI, We've left open the Display connector. We don't have to buy/assemble them on the board, wich makes the endprice lower, but the holes are still there, so any expansion in that direction, is still availeable.
RAMPS boards were popular for exactly this reason. But they have serious toddler-issues. Research them. search for RAMPS+melting :) ....
Then you'll know why i found it nececcary to bring a new standard.
RAMPS require 2560 arduino boards to work. Its a dual board setup, too thick to still fit in a laptopbag. A 2560 is also an 8-bit board. This means, it has a highway of 8 lanes to the processor. Where our board has a 32lane- highway to the processor, because, since the RAMPS, a lot of baby-issues have been adressed, and it became clear, that IF a 3D Printer ever wanted to function professionally; (an Expandeable, RAMPS-like-board), it should be built on 32bit architecture foundations.
Our processor is an M4Cortex, derived from the ones in Arduino Due boards, but is a little faster, has ONBOARD USB, eliminating USB to serialchips like FTDI CH340 CP2102, further lowering price. And to top it off, it's a little cheaper then the original Ardu Due processor.
All foldie parts are printable on 200x200mm beds, but to save time on assembly(and too streamline our production), i've added an edition, where the Bottom, Back, and Top are three individual part files, printable on 280x280mm beds. It transforms 11 seperate files into 3 single files. But the requirement is a printer with at least a 280x280mm bed. Pré-Printed frames, manufactured by us or partners will consist out of this three-part-frames. They are essentially merged Single files, so there is no diffrence between the versions, except for the weight(extra screws/nuts for the singlepart version) and assembly time.
our board development has some delay.
Tony Lock from Thinkprint3D and Esher3D,
thinks it is ok to string customers along for over 4 months!!
"if u want something done right, you gotta do it yourself"
"i am greatful for all those who refused to help me, because of them, i did it myself.
So i set out to design a trifold of boards myself.
All aimed at beginners, some with expansions, for developpers, tinkerers, and hackers.
the smarter the architecture, the more expansions they will have.
one on the AtMega328 , one on 2560 architecture, and one on a 32bit processor.
-just after printing the wholeprinter in an uniform color, i got an idea to update the extruder assembly with more effective cooling containing more affordable parts.
my update enables:
-sheet alu design opposed too a CNC machined design=cheaper(about 9€/10$)
-replacing the Alu heatsink+404010 continuous extruder cooling fan with a much smaller and more affordable, single 252507 fan.
The sheet metal design enables a COLD-END-approach, not seen, or rivalled, since the Ultimaker series.
But some extensive research uncovered some Heat Resistant options that now enable the whole approach.
it requires a mold to make the HeatBlocker tho.
The point of the whole update was
-lesser amount of parts=success
-lower cost =success
-more effective ColdEnd=untested.
-universally apliccable heatblock to keep heat down, IN the hotend heater block= untested.
Any donations contributing to the prototypes of this approach are greatly appreciated!
Simply cuz ordering low amounts of custom parts, is expensive!
- need one small metal,CNCmilled, baking mold for molding, baking, and testing the heatblock.
- need one tiny sheet metal(1.5mm thick) design, cut and bended, to upgrade the hotend assembly.
Contributing can be done by:
Buying me a warm choco, warm meal, or pair of socks
Donating via Paypal
donating via Paypal
*We plan to use https://www.gofundme.com as crowdfundplatform because others have too limited payment solutions for students.
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