RepRapPro Tricolor Mendel Fan Mount

by hlx_mr, published

RepRapPro Tricolor Mendel Fan Mount by hlx_mr Apr 17, 2013
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Fan mount for 40mm fans for the new RepRap Tricolor X-Carriage
Should improve print quality on small parts.

Warning: Mount is somewhat long, so check clearance for all axis


Fit 6 M3 nuts
Screw on fan
Screw into extruder slot (on the X-carriage), opposite of the target extruder

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I find most of the air going out backwards from the fan. Is this normal? Unfortunately I do not get enough air flow towards the nozzle in order for the fan to make a difference when e.g. printing overhangs.

Nice design otherwise though, the nuts traps fitted perfectly.

Hi Ploks

Sorry for the late responce.
The airflow coming from the nozzle is not massive, but has been sufficient for my purposes. I am a bit surprissed that you describe air going backwards from the fan. This may seem trivial, but have you checked that the orientation of the fan and the wiring is correct?

I've double checked :) Would not be the first time I put something backwards. I was also surprised that so much air went out backwards, it was definitely blowing more backwards than forwards. I have two 120 mm fans blowing on the whole bed so maybe that is why I did not see any additional effect from the small directed flow.

Just finished printing the fan duct. A great upgrade from the one I was previously using. Thank you!!!
With that said, there is a slight issue with the model. The two slots provided for the M3 nuts are definitely too small. They measured out to be 4.85mm while an M3 nut measures in at 5.5mm. I had to use my Dremel and some hot glue to get the fasteners to fit and stay.

Thanks for the heads-up. There is indeed a problem in the design file. Will give an update soon.

updated today

If you have a SCAD file for this thing, would you mind sharing? I'm looking to remix the 'fan duct' into one I can mount onto the left side of the hotend on my RepRap. Wanted to see if two fan ducts work better than one. I may also need to upgrade my fans to push a little more CFM. My current fan only pushes 4.83 CFM.

The design was made with Autodesk Inventor. The design file (.ipt) is already available. If you are a university student you can get a free Pro version. Otherwise I am afraid I can not help you with this one.

The photo shows the fan mount on a lower Z level than the actual nozzle. Is that an illusion or is it real? As I understand the nozzle should be very close to the printing surface so isn't this very bad?

Hi mihalisgr
It's an illusion. The fan is a tiny bit higher then the nozzle. The RepRapPro Mendel actually allows for small variations in extruder height (in order to be able to level up the three nozzles), so you might have to slighlty vary my design for your porpuses.

Thanks for the reply, I will print and mount it tonight then, thanks for the design too

I printed one of these out, hooked it up to a 40mm fan, wired everything and it all works. Unfortunately, it seems that the amount of air this blows on the print is insufficient to cool as it's printing (even with fan output set to 100% in repetier-host.

I'm particularly having trouble printing PLA out and was hoping this would allow me to remove the large oscillating fan that's currently pointed at my printer. What fan are you using? I purchased this model from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Noctua-40x10mm-A-Series-Bearing-Premium/dp/B009NQLT0M/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1367806041&sr=8-3&keywords=40mm+fanhttp://www.amazon.com/Noctua-4...

Hi Kabong

I use a Revoltec Air Guard. The draft that reaches the nozzle is indeed rather weak, but I do not know how to optimise the airflow. (The x-carriage design makes this rather hard.) Bigger server grade fans might give a better result.

When doing small prints, I have the slicer spend at least 20s on each layer. I'm currently doing a series of tabletop miniatures (pictures will be up in a couple of days). These print just fine considering the 0.5mm nozzle.

Thanks for the reply. I ordered two new fans to try: 40mmx40x20mm and 40mmx40mmx28mm, both of which should at least double the CFM of the fan I'm using now. Can you share a bit more detail about your print setup? I'm particularly interested in material used, print bed, print bed settings (temperature if glass) and hot end settings.

I'm printing .25 layer height on a glass bed at varying temperatures (I've tried everything from 50C to 80C) and at varying hotend temperatures (180C to 210C). The only thing that really has made a difference was putting a stand up oscillating fan directly in front of the printer and running it on a low speed. The active cooling vs. no-cooling test that I did with the oscillating fan was kind of shocking in terms of what it did for quality of print: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kabong/8682407344/in/set-72157633284730332http://www.flickr.com/photos/k...

I would be very interested to read how these fans perform...

My print settings are as follows:

capton bed at 60C
(glass is good, but with capton I have had no warping at all, temperature doesn't realy matter for print quality as long as it sticks)

0.5 noozle printing 0.2 or 0.3 layer height at 200C for the first layer and 180C for the rest

(0.2 only for artistic objects, infill doesnt work properly then, x-y-resolution isn't acutally that different due to width-over-height limitations (upgrading to smaller noozle soon))

material is white 1.75mm PLA from mexhibit

Skeinforge as slicer (slow as hell, but slic3r didnt deliver nice results for me): I'm actually doing quite a bit of trickery here: cooling with minimum step speed, hop combined with retraction,... (I'm happy to send you my settings of required)

See here for an example of print quality for small prints. (http://www.thingiverse.com/make:37747)http://www.thingiverse.com/mak...

Dire Rat 28mm miniature
by hlx_mr

I printed this out - thanks for sharing it! The M3 nuts fit perfectly in the recesses so it must be the right size, however the bolt hole pattern for the fan isn't square, which means I can't attach my 40mm fan.

Any ideas what went wrong?

Hi ajayre

I checked the stl and also uploaded the original Inventor design file. The holes should be 32mm apart and 4mm of the outer edges. This is indeed the case in the stl and fits my 40mm revoltec fan just fine. Maybe you have a problem with your x-y-step calibration. Let me know what caused your problem, once you are sure.

Yes, I think you are right!

Hi ajayre

I checked the stl and also uploaded the original Inventor design file. The centers of the holes should be 32 mm apart and 4 mm from the outer edges, which is the case in the stl. This fits my revoltec 40mm fan just fine. Maybe you have a problem with the x-y-step calibation. Let me know what caused the problem, once you worked it out.

Greetings hlx_mr